We decided to start off our Anatomy and Physiology Unit by jumping into the Skeletal System. There are TONS of really awesome ideas to cover this topic, but my only real goal for this unit was for Bristol to memorize a majority of the bones in her body.
We started out our first week just reading a few books that had information about the Skeletal System. We learned that kids have 300 bones and adults have 206 bones! That our skeletal system give our bodies their shape, they protect our organs, and they help us bend and move!
Usborne’s Big Book Of The Body…This book didn’t contain the proper terminology, but it did have some awesome facts and a large fold out skeleton that definitely had my daughter’s attention.
Usborne’s Look Inside Your Body
Cat In The Hat: Inside Your Outside!
I chose this Skeletal System Packet because it contained enough information to be challenging, but still appropriate for a 4 year old to have fun with. It also contained the proper terminology… (Instead of using “skull”, “thigh bone”, and “knee cap”… She learned “cranium”, “femur”, “patella”.) We started with the cranium and worked our way down the skeletal system memorizing the names of the bones. Since this packet doesn’t list every single bone, I had to add a few extras…Like when we hit the bones of the hand, I added carpals and metacarpals.
This packet also contained a larger printable skeleton, which I laminated and hung on our wall… It was really nice to be able to use dry erase markers on the laminated skeleton to distinguish smaller bones that she may not have recognized as quickly.
These were some of the hands on resources we used while we were studying the Skeletal System. I only gave Bristol a few pieces to memorize at a time. Once she had fluently memorized the pieces she had, I would give her a few more.
Janod Body Magnet Set… This is a really cool resource b/c it contains more than just the skeletal system, and it looks like an autopsy table. (Ha)
Learning Resources Magnetic Human Body… Forget the ABC magnets! We have a Human Skeleton on our fridge. This set is also reversable, and contains the Circulatory and Muscular System on the opposite side.
We definitely had to do the Magic School Bus: Journey Into The Human Body Kit…This kit came with other experiments, but we only did the two that went along with our bone study.
Experiment #1. (Pictured Below) What makes our bones stiff and strong?…In this experiment, Bristol had to soak chicken bones in test tubes of vinegar which essentially decalcified them making them rubbery and flexible.
Experiment #2. (Pictured Below) What is a ball and socket joint? …In this experiment, we took a dive into the world of joints. At first we explored our bodies and identified all of the parts that bend and move around! She noticed that her fingers bend, her elbow bends, her knees, her neck, her shoulder, etc… This was actually a really neat discussion to have with Bristol b/c she is so fascinated with building machines. She is familiar with needing different types of joints in a machine in order for all of the parts to move correctly. This experiment showed her how beautifully the bones fit and work together to form a movable point in our own bodies.
The Usborne Books that we explored earlier in our study also had fun little facts about joints that added some visuals to our discussion.
These were the Netflix shows that we watched to accompany our Skeletal System Study:
Sid The Science Kid: “How did my dog do that?”
Cat In The Hat: “Jiggly Bones”
Magic School Bus: “Flexes It’s Muscles”
While we were watching these, we busted out our Cheetos Bag Of Bones for a snack! This was the perfect time of year to study the Skeletal System b/c these delicious treats only come out once a year!
Apps we used to study the skeletal system:
TinyBop: The Human Body…This TinyBop App is beautifully designed, and contains all of the Body Systems we will be studying this year. The Skeletal System part of this app allows you to take apart and reassemble the skeleton system piece by piece! It lets you explore moving joints, and takes you inside the composition of a bone.
Finally, we live on the coast; so naturally we took a Bag Of Bones to the beach! This was so much fun, and totally freaked out everyone that walked by!
After we wrapped up our Skeletal System Unit, our KiwiCrate came in the mail… It just happened to be a “Body Box” which covered Human Anatomy. One of the Skeletal System experiments was making an X-Ray with “Glow Paper” and black wall clings in the shape of bones. Here’s how it turned out…
The KiwiCrate also came with a “Yummy Bones” experiment where we rolled out and baked dough in the shape of bones… The directions called for making like a”cheesy bread” type snack, but I thought it would be more appealing to use Cinnamon Roll dough for my picky eater.
***Picture Coming Soon***
Usborne also came out with a really cool book called This Is Not A Science Book. It had some really cool anatomy activities which included tracing out our hands, and drawing out our carpals, metacarpals, and phalanges. It also included a Skeleton Mobile but since we already had so many skeletons hanging around the house, we decided to hold off on that activity.
And that’s a wrap on our Skeletal System Unit…
With A Happy Heart, Brittany ❤