GO IN DEPTH

All Systems Go!

Materials

  • An All Systems Go! activity sheet for each student
  • An apple or other healthy snack
  • Pencils or pens
  • Computers with Internet access
All Systems Go!

Launch Tool

Kids are aware of many parts of the body—organs, bones, blood, etc. Through this online interactive activity, kids learn about the concept of separate body parts working together to build a body system. A system is a collection of things and processes (and often people) that interact to perform some function. Help your kids explore the inside of the human body with this activity.


Background

You might not give much thought to how your body operates throughout the day. For instance, 206 bones make up the skeletal system that holds us up. Tendons, ligaments, and muscles are part of the muscular system that helps us move around. Body systems, including the digestive, skeletal, respiratory, circulatory, and nervous systems work together. For instance, your stomach, part of the digestive system, sends messages to your brain, part of the nervous system, when your body is hungry. Respiratory and circulatory systems work together to deliver oxygen and nutrients to the entire body. There are different systems within the human body and these systems work independently and together to form a functioning human body.


Activity Instructions

Set-Up

Hold up an apple or snack. Ask your group: “If I were to eat this, what body parts would I use?” (There are several body parts that could be used: teeth and jaw muscles for biting and chewing; the throat and esophagus for swallowing; and the stomach for breaking down the food. You may want to write these on a blackboard.)

Now ask: “If you have the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and small and large intestines working together, what do all of those body parts make up?” (They make up the digestive system.) “What would happen if say, the esophagus were not there?” (What you want kids to realize through discussion is that parts make up a system, and work together for the system to function. If you take a part away, the system would not work to its full potential or at all.)

Now, students can play the All Systems Go! interactive to see if they can correctly place body parts in the appropriate system.

Activity

Give each student an All Systems Go! activity sheet and a pencil and point them toward the student web page. The activity sheet will provide kids with the URL to access the interactive.

They will do an online interactive that instructs them to construct the following:

  • The digestive system: esophagus, stomach, small intestine, and large intestine
  • The skeletal system: skull, rib cage, pelvis, and femur
  • The respiratory and circulatory systems: arteries and veins, heart, trachea, and lungs
  • The nervous system: spinal chord, brain, nerve net, eyes, nose, and ears

As kids move through the activity, ask them if they can think of other body parts not pictured in the game that might be included in each system. After they've completed the activity, they can answer the questions on their student sheet and, if there's time, you can discuss the answers as a group.


Related Activities


All Systems Go!

Launch Activity

Even when you’re just sitting still, your body is still at work. You breathe around the clock. Your heart pumps blood. Bones protect your organs. And that brain of yours is helping it all happen by sending and receiving messages to and from the rest of your body. All these parts of your body are classified into systems, based on their function. In this activity, you will play a computer game to figure out which body parts work together.


Student Activity Sheet

Download Student Activity Sheet

Online Resources

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Afterschool Resource Details

Grades Themes Type
AAAS Thinkfinity