Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Systems of the Body Unit Study

We've been studying the systems of the body for the last month or so and instead of teaching them all myself, I thought it would be better to have each student pick a system that they wanted to teach the rest of us about.

Mr. 8 yo (year old) picked the digestive system - a great one for boys, or so I thought!
Ms. 10 yo picked the respiratory system
Ms. 13 yo picked the skeletal system
Ms. 14 yo picked the muscular system
Ms. 16 yo picked the integumentary (skin) system and
I picked the cardiac and circulatory systems.

We began by going to the library to find some books and movies on each of our systems. Everyone then spent the next few weeks (we only do this twice a week) pouring over their books and deciding what they wanted us to learn and how they wanted us to learn it.

Last week, the presentations began. Ms. 13 yo and Ms 14 yo did very nice presentations on their systems. They each had some written notes, some pictures to share with us as well as a movie and a game for the skeletal system. For the muscular system we ended with some stretching exercises that left us all feeling muscles we haven't felt in awhile.

This week we began with Ms. 10 yo who did a great job on her presentation about our lungs and how we breath. She even made up a game where we had to guess system related words that began with the letters that spell out RESPIRATORY. Let's just say she had to give us a few clues.

Next came Mr. 8yo and his digestive system. A few weeks ago he decided that this system was disgusting and he refused to look at any books that showed pictures of the various parts - you know, like the intestines or the liver. Maybe his 3 yo brother isn't too far off in calling him a "girly boy" :) (really, I'm just kidding!) Anyhow, he is the kind of kid that reads something once and has it memorized, so he was able to very accurately describe what happens to the food that we eat. He then entertained and educated us by reading the book "The Quest to Digest", complete with different character voices and everything! It was highly entertaining.

Today, Ms. 16 yo will give us her POWER POINT presentation on the skin. Should be good and it will definitely show us all up! Last night she had the nerve to ask me if I had been working on my presentation (which I conveniently saved for last to give me more time!) Of course I have been working on it! It just won't be as flashy as hers. Fortunately, I have a movie to fall back on!

Overall, it has been a very fun way to learn a lot about the different body systems. I know they have all learned a lot more than if I had spent the last four weeks teaching them! It always amazes me what they are capable of when I let them have a say in their learning.