• Greg Landry

Molar Mass of Glucose & How Students Learn

Updated: May 16, 2019

© Greg Landry 2019. For permission to reprint in blogs, newsletters, web sites, etc. please contact Greg Landry.

As you teach science, use what one of my pedagogy professors called "stringing" and repetition to help students learn new information. They are separate strategies that often overlap and are powerful tools that enhance a student's ability to learn and retain.

Many of my Chemistry and Biology students are tired of hearing about glucose or the molar mass of glucose. It's one of the many pegs I use for stringing - tying new information to information students already know. This achieves two critical components of effective learning - repetition and using known information to introduce new information. As an aside, repetition is a pet peeve of mine, critically important, and a topic for another article.

Glucose is a central bio-molecule in all of plant, animal, and human life. I often joke with my students that they should walk around the house repeating "C6H12O6" which is the molecular formula for glucose. Glucose is front and center in cellular respiration (production of ATP), photsynthesis, and many biochemical reactions. It has to be maintained in homeostasis in human blood and it's stored as larger glycogen molecules in the liver and muscles. The molar mass of glucose is 180 grams and is the sum of the masses of the elements that make it up. It's a great peg for many topics in Chemistry and Biology.

As you teach science, look for pegs that you can come back to often as you string new information to known information. The association with known concepts / information helps students to more easily grasp and retain new information and also serves as repetition - two vital parts of effective learning.