To start our day together we lap booked our way through the memory work like always, then we moved into talking about the digestive system. We started with the mouth and esophagus and took this opportunity to specifically talk about choking and give a mini tutorial on how to spot someone choking. It was a good topic to start with and we even had our own certified instructor present for today, doing a hands on demonstration of the Heimlich maneuver for the kids.
The next concept we introduced was peristalsis. We talked about what it was and then the kids did a demonstration, using a knee high and a tennis ball. They squeezed the ball through the hose to get the concept.
We were then on to build our model of the digestive system.
The esophagus is a straw, stomach a balloon, liver a sponge (after all, isn't it though?), large intestine a pantyhose with cotton balls in it and yarn for the small intestine.
Then came the disgusting fun! The kids did a digestive system simulation. The results were interesting. Our one little guy in the group almost vomited (which totally surprised me - I expected a possible girl or two) and the faces they all made were priceless! It was messy, gross fun and I'm certain they can all tell you how the digestive system works now! I don't think they will ever forget!
To start with, I gave them all sandwich bread and peanut butter with knives. I told them to make a peanut butter sandwich. Then I handed them each a bowl and told them to put the sandwich in the bowl (which was simulating their mouth) and then take their knife and begin to cut it into pieces (simulating their teeth). Then they were given a small amount of water (simulating saliva) to pour into their bowl. Next they were given some milk (after all, eating peanut butter sandwiches gets sticky and you need a drink of milk with it -don't you?)! After it was good and mashed up with the fork, they transferred it into baggies (simulating their stomach). They were then given some soda (simulating digestive juices) and they sealed their baggie and squished and squashed away at their baggies working the: bread, peanut butter, water, and coke, into a nice chum.
Then their bags were cut in the corner and they were told to squeeze out the baggie contents into a knee high (simulating the small intestine).
As they worked at getting that chum down the knee high they begin to have liquid come out of their hose, so they were given paper towels (simulating their villi) to absorb the "nutrients" of their sandwich and milk.
When they got to the bottom of the knee high they were told to flip it over because they were now entering the large intestine and they began to work the small intestine's digested food, down the other way on the knee high, until it came out the end (top) of the knee high and that was the "poop". We jokingly analyzed whether their transit time was too "quick" and they ended up with diarrhea. Moms always analyze poop don't they? haha I was thankful that we weren't given a live demonstration of vomit by our little buddy, as he stepped outside for some fresh air about this point in the demonstration. It was a little bit gross and the smells were not pretty. Great demonstration though! Truly effective and should cure any kid from eating PBJ for a while. LOL
These were some of the funny faces I was able to catch as they did this demonstration. It's one they won't soon forget!
To end our day of fun we had to make whoopee whistles (and hopefully make up for almost making my little buddy vomit)! So I took straws and balloons, having the kids tape the balloon onto the straw. Then the kids cut the end of the balloon off, about half way up. Then they blew into the straw and it made a less than lady like noise, which delighted our little boy in the group! All was well then.
To end our silliness we made teeth with apples and nuts or marshmallows - the kids did too - haha.
It was a Wonderful Wednesday! So blessed to share it with such great friends!