Friday, July 1, 2011

Studying (and Making) Our Own Skeleton

The human body is so cool. To kick off some lessons related to our anatomy, I thought we’d read up on bones. Our first book was “Bones” by Stephen Krensky. Even though it’s a step 2 Step Into Reading book, I read it to my son. This non-fiction book talked about bones at my son’s level and I was thrilled to have found it at our local library.

Afterwards, I gave my son a skeleton puzzle. (Well, that’s what I called it, anyway.) I downloaded these great bone cut-outs from The Crafty Crow website, then printed, cut out, and punched holes in them. All that was left to do was assemble. My son was up to the challenge.

Right away, he grabbed the skull and ribs (I reminded him what these bones were called) and he taped them together. Then he attached the pelvis with one of the brads I’d set out.

Now, he was stumped. Then I reminded him of what we’d learned in Krensky’s book: that the longest bones in our body are in our legs! That was just the hint he needed to push on. It wasn’t long before the whole skeleton was assembled.

When he asked me why we were using brads instead of tape to connect the bones, I reminded him about joints and showed him how we’d walk if we couldn’t bend our knees.

After our skeleton was complete, my son read Jo Cleland’s non-fiction book, “Why Do I Have Bones?” The repetitive phrases and simple words made this book ideal for my almost-six-year-old son to read on his own.

To wrap up our lesson on bones, we watched “The Skeleton Dance” on YouTube.

I wonder how long I’ll have “Dem Bones, dem bones, dem bones, dem dancing bones …” stuck in my head!

This is a great activity for young learners and the books we used were instrumental and age-appropriate for kindergarteners or first graders. They helped teach my son lots of fun facts about the human skeleton. A few hours after we'd completed the activity, I overheard my son tell his younger brother, "If we didn't have bones, we'd be blobs." HA!

Make your own skeleton by downloading Kate from Mini-Eco’s skeleton parts on The Crafty Crow here.


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  2. That is hysterical! I love how your little one asks such great questions! I wonder if there is a version of that song with the scientific name for the bones? I'd love to do this later in the year!

    Thank you for joining the Smart Summer Challenge!!!

  3. If you ever decide to change careers, I think you'd be a great teacher! And the skeleton is almost life size too--easy to make a true comparison.

  4. Okay I am LOVING your blog. I am going to homeschool my Little Bit and I so want to steal, err I mean borrow all of your fantastic ideas!

  5. What a fun project to be done around Halloween also! Thanks for linking up with us at The Sunday Showcase!