Two weeks ago, we did Lesson 6: The Circulatory System. This was a popular lesson because of the experiments. Bean is still walking around using the improvised stethoscope we made in the MSB science kit.
*Bean read The Magic School Bus Has a Heart
*We have, but didn’t read, The Circulatory System (True Books)
All About the Blood and Heart: Human Body for Children
Bill Nye the Science Guy: Blood and Circulation
Bill Nye the Science Guy: Heart
The Magic School Bus Works Out
*Heart: we used a toilet paper tube to listen to our heartbeats (cheap and effective). First we counted how many times our hearts beat in one minute while resting. Then we did jumping jacks for 30 seconds and listened again. I also tried to get Bean to feel her pulse on her wrist and neck, but she was acting difficult and gave up before she even really tried.
*We did a repeat of the above experiment using the stethoscope we built that was included in the MSB science kit.
Last week, we covered Lesson 7: The Respiratory System. This lesson went over well as well because the experiments were fun.
*Again we had The Respiratory System (True Books) on our list to read, but didn’t read it.
Bill Nye the Science Guy: Respiration
We did three experiments to show how respiration works. The first one is the very simple, but very effective, extinguish a candle by cutting off its oxygen supply. Bean enjoyed that one, but I’m sure it’s because matches and fire were involved.
The other two experiments we did came from the MSB science kit. Both worked out, though one of them was a little bit of a bust. And I had to go out and buy two cheap 2 liter bottles of soda for them as soda is not something I buy. (One of my big complaints about the MSB science kits – a lot of the normal household objects are normal for our house).
*We cut the bottom off a bottle, hooked a balloon over the top – balloon dangling inside the bottle, and then taped a piece of latex to the open bottom of the bottle. Pulling down on the diaphragm (latex) showed how it helps the lungs (balloon) expand when you breathe.
*Next we filled the unadulterated bottle up to the brim with water and turned it upside down into a sink full of water. I shoved a plastic tube into the bottle so we could breathe into the bottle, thereby pushing out the water. The purpose is to show lung capacity. It works, but trying to get a 6 year old to take a “normal” breath is incredibly hard. My quibble with this experiment is the directions. Nowhere did it say you would have to refill the bottle after every breath. Not a bit thing, and something common sense can solve, but it is still something that should have been in there.