Thursday, May 6, 2010

Human Body - Bones and Lungs

After a very unproductive week last week, we continued on with our study of the human body this week. Lexy's curiosity about the human body continues to grow. She asks to read the body books over and over and asks many questions. This week, we focused primarily on the bones and lungs.


We began our study by forming people out of playdough. We talked about how our bodies would be like our playdough people if we didn't have skeletons.

Josiah concentrated very hard on trying to form a person!

This was Lexy's little person. It turned out cute!

Here, we discovered that our playdough people could not stand up without a skeleton. Lexy described them as "floppy."

Next, she used a magnifying glass to observe chicken bones. She observed that the bones were hard, they had white "sticky stuff" on the top, and there were dents in the top. She learned that the white "stuff" was cartilage, the dent would've been where a joint was, and bones are hard because of calcium.

We did an experiment to see what would happen if the calcium was taken out of the bones. This experiment came out of "Play and Find out about the Human Body." First, she tried to break the bones and discovered that they were too hard to break. We filled a jar with vinegar and placed the bones in the jar. Each day, we take the bones out to see how they are changing. The bones have been in the vinegar for two days and are quite a bit softer. By day 7, they should easily break. The vinegar removes the calcium from the bones.

Notice, she didn't like the smell of vinegar!

Our favorite book for learning about bones was "The Skeleton Inside You" by Philip Balestrino. Lexy enjoyed it and asked to read it several times throughout the week. It also clearly explained the lessons that I was wanting to teach about bones in a way that a preschooler could understand. We also looked through other skeleton books mainly just to look at the pictures.
Lessons learned about bones:
1. There are 206 bones in the human body
2. We move and bend because of joints
3. All of our bones together form our skeleton
4. Bones are hard because of calcium
5. We get calcium from green leafy vegetables and milk
6. Some bones protect organs
7. Bones can break
It just so happened that during the week we were studying lungs, Sid the Science Kid had an episode on Lungs...perfect! Lexy enjoyed watching the episode and asked questions throughout it.
We started our study by watching our chests rise and fall as we took deep breaths. We also used brown lunch bags to breathe into. As she watched the bag fill up, I asked her what it was filling up with. She was confused by the question.

Then, she used her lungs to blow bubbles in water. The harder she blew, the bigger the bubbles got.

The, she tried to blow up a balloon, but was unsuccessful.

Lessons learned about lungs:
1. We breathe air into our lungs to take in oxygen
2. The air we blow out is the bad air that our bodies do not need
3. Our lungs are protected by our ribs (bones)
4. When we exercise we breathe faster to take in more oxygen
To see what we did in our study on the heart and the five senses click here. The book list that we've used is also listed there.


Rebecca said...

These are great activities! Ill have to bookmark this post for the future.

Raising a Happy Child said...

Awesome unit. We are planning to do bones this week too, since Anna seems to be over her fear of anything to do with skeletons. She read the easy reader "Bones" this week, and we will also read "A Skeleton inside you". By the way - your bone will not break. It will become "a rubber bone". You could tie it in the knot and then leave it outside where it will absorb CO2 from air and will harden again. A very popular experiment for older kids :)

sbswtp said...

I love the lung activities! Great job :)

KJ said...

Wow! What a great week! I came from the Homeschool Creations link up!

Discovering Montessori said...

I love the playdoh people. You have some very creative experiments here.

Ticia said...

Things have finally settled down enough for me to comment. I love your units. Did the bone end up breaking after 7 days?

Post a Comment