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A Children's Guide to the Human Body

The Skeleton
Your skeleton gives your body shape with 206 different bones. Your skeleton also helps protect your organs such as the brain, heart and lungs. Your skeleton works with your muscles and so sometimes this is called the musculo-skeletal system. Muscles are connected to your bones by tendons and bones are connected to each other by ligaments. The places where your different bones are connected are called joints. Muscles that make bones move are connected to two different bones; for example when you bend your arm at the elbow or your leg at the knee. Some of your bones make blood cells in the marrow. Your bones store minerals such as calcium and phosphorus.

The human skeleton is separated in two parts. One part is the axial skeleton. The axial skeleton includes the skull, sternum, ribs, and vertebral column. The other part is called the appendicle skeleton and includes your arms and legs, shoulders and pelvic bones.

There are four types of bones in your body. They are long bones, short bones, flat bones, and irregular bones. These bones are made of two kinds of tissue. They are compact or dense bone, and spongy bone.

Muscles
Bones need muscles to make them move. Your muscles make your arms, eyes, tongue, legs, and everything in your body move. They help you chew food, stand, walk, sit, run, and play.
You have more than 600 muscles in your body and they are made out of stretchy cells and fibers.

Circulatory
Your heart is a muscle that pumps blood through your circulatory system. The blood gets oxygen from your lungs and takes it to all parts of the body.

Respiratory
Your lungs help your body breathe and get oxygen. Air comes in through your nose and sometimes your mouth. The air is sucked down your trachea and bronchial tubes, and into both of your lungs. Your lungs can hold about the same amount of air that is in a basketball. Your lungs help you push out carbon dioxide when you exhale.

The muscle that helps lungs do all this work is called a diaphragm. The diaphragm pushes air out of the lungs and expands to get air in like balloons.

Nervous System
The brain is the main control center for what your body does and what you think. Your brain runs your body by sending and receiving message from all over your body. Some of these messages go through the spinal cord moving fast. This is called your nervous system. Nerves are what help you feel temperature, pain, and make you ticklish.

Digestive System
Your digestive system helps your body grow and gives you energy by turning food and drinks into tiny molecules of nutrients. The nutrients are then delivered to area of your body by cells in your blood. When you eat a sandwich digestion breaks down it down into the smallest parts. Your digestive tract includes your mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum, and anus. Two other digestive organs are your liver and pancreas.

Endocrine System
Your endocrine system is made up of hormones and glands. These are the chemical messengers that send information and instructions between cells. Your glands are made up of groups of cells. These cells produce and give off chemicals like sweat.

Excretory System
Excretion is like throwing things away in the trash. Your body has wastes to throw away such as carbon dioxide, water, salt, and uric acid. The organs of the excretory system include your lungs for removing carbon dioxide, your liver, your skin, and your kidneys.

Ears
Your ears have several parts. The outer ear catches sound waves, or vibrations, and they travel in the auditory canal to your eardrum. Your eardrum vibrates and sends these sounds to three tiny bones in the middle ear. These are called ossicles and they amplify the sound and send the sound waves to the inner ear. The inner ear changes the sounds or vibrations into messages your brain can understand.

Eyes
Your eyes are like cameras that take in light and create pictures. Your cornea is a small clear cover over the eye that works like a lens. The retina at the back of the eye produces an image.
The place where the light enters your eye is the iris. The iris opens and closes which makes your pupil get bigger or smaller. The pupil is the center of the eye where light passes through.

Learn More Resources:

Bartleby.com edition of Gray’s Anatomy http://www.bartleby.com/107/
This website features 1,247 vibrant graphics from the classic 1918 publication. The subject index has 13,000 entries from A-Z.

Anatomy for Kids http://homeschooling.gomilpitas.com/explore/anatomy.htm
Information and more resources for learning about the human body.

Apples for the Teacher http://www.apples4theteacher.com
A fun and educational website for kids.

Cells Alive http://www.cellsalive.com/
This site has video and images of living cells and organisms for education and medical research from over thirty years.

ELS http://www.eslflow.com/humanbodylessonplans.html
ESL teaching materials for the human body

FAQ Kids http://www.faqkids.com/
Free online project for educating children about science, the human body, outer space and more.

Inner Body http://www.innerbody.com/htm/body.html
Human anatomy graphics online.

Kidnetic http://www.kidnetic.com
Kidnetic is a cool site safe for kids games and cool stuff about how your body works, how eating right and playing helps you play better and feel good. Resources for kids, parents, and educators.

Kids Biology http://www.kidsbiology.com/human_biology/index.php
Free children’s learning network.

Kids Connect http://www.kidskonnect.com/subject-index/31-health/337-human-body.html
Extensive information and resources for teaching kids about the human body.

Kids Health http://kidshealth.org/kid/

Kids Info http://www.kidinfo.com/health/human_body.html
This is a comprehensive website for learning about the human body.

Kids Know It http://www.kidsknowit.com/
Free educational resource with interactive learning modules.

Learning Games for Kids http://www.learninggamesforkids.com/health_games_body_parts.html
Heads, shoulders, knees and toes games for kids that teach the parts of the body.

Neuroscience for Kids http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/neurok.html
This site was created for students and teachers to learn about the nervous system. Includes experiments, activities, and games about the brain, spinal cord, neurons and the senses.

The Virtual Body http://www.medtropolis.com/VBody.asp
Awesome virtual body tours.

Yucky http://yucky.discovery.com/teachercenter/pg000064.htm Teaching guide for the human body.

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