Movement across membranes teaching resources

Worksheets and lesson ideas to challenge students aged 11 to 16 to think hard about active transport, osmosis and diffusion (GCSE and Key Stage 3)

How do substances such as glucose, carbon dioxide and water get into cells? Cell transport is a fantastic area of biology that links together lots of different concepts, requiring synoptic thinking e.g. active transport requires an understanding of respiration, protein structure and concentration gradients. Start by asking students what substances move into and out of cells and then think about the problems that the cell must overcome. The membrane is made of lipid but water and oil do not mix so how does osmosis take place? Glucose is a massive molecule so how can it diffuse across a membrane made from tightly packed hydrocarbon chains?


  1. Active transport
  2. Diffusion 
  3. Osmosis