Monday, September 17, 2012

Digestion continued

I have no idea what I did with my post, so I will do it AGAIN!

First, let me tell you about my wonderful, fabulous, amazing, one-of-a kind, parent volunteer, Mrs. F. I swear she can read my mind and do things before I even request them. Every time we have a new unit of study she makes these awesome shirts for us. The students bring in a plain T-shirt, I supply all the fabric paint, and she does all the magic. Viola!

Now on to Digestion...
Lesson 4:
Once again we began by reviewing the previous lessons and reading from our Science Resource book.
We then began our lesson by writing the question:
What happens to the bolus once it reaches our stomach?

Students were given 2 ziploc quart size baggies (an extra for reinforcement), some pieces of lettuce, a cracker, a piece of tostada, and some peanuts. They wrote and drew the contents of their stomachs in their science notebooks. They then had to take turns with their partner simulating the movement their stomach makes to churn up food with their fingers. The contents of the bag were dry--mechanical digestion. They drew what their stomach looked like after the churning.

We discussed what they observed:
-the lettuce is not easily broken down into smaller pieces
-the cracker and tostada are crumbled and in smaller parts
-the peanuts are pretty much whole
-it makes sense for food to last up to 4 hours in our stomach

For the second part-chemical digestion-students added about 1 tablespoon of water and 2 tablespoons of vinegar (to act like the gastric juices in our stomachs). Students once again churned away and then took notes on what they observed. It did look pretty gross and we had just finished having lunch.

Students once again had the opportunity to complete their science journal entries.

My students had a lot of fun. I could tell from all the oohs and aahhs. I am really glad they are learning, having fun and understanding very abstract concepts.

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These activities, like many of the ones before, came from great science teachers/bloggers I follow (Maureen at and Karen at and from Pinterest ideas.  Thanks to them for making science so much fun!

I hope I didn't leave anything out that I had on the one that disappeared. If I did or you need further information, leave me a comment below. We will now be moving on to the small intestine next and planning another gross, yet very fun activity I hope. Does any one have any other suggestions or ideas?

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