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Learn about how your amazing body works and how you can stay healthy!

Let’s get started with an overview of how your body works!


Our skeletal system holds us up so we don’t flop around like jellyfish. The human body has 206 bones and each one is important. Watch the video to learn all about your super skeleton! 




We can feel our bones, but we can’t see them unless we are looking at a special picture called an X-Ray. Use Q-Tips as bones to create your own X-Ray pictures!

Mix up a batch of black play dough, or lay the Q-tips out on dark paper or even a table. 

Use the chart to the left as your guide for placing the Q-tips. Or draw the major bones on paper or the sidewalk. Just the major ones thought, you don’t need to draw all 206 bones! Can you name them while you draw?


Muscles provide the tug on the bones needed to bend, straighten, and move. There are around 650 skeletal muscles in the human body.


  • Muscle makes up around half of the total human body weight.
  • Muscle tissue is also around 15% denser than fat tissue.
  • Cardiac muscle is an involuntary muscle. It is only found in the heart and is responsible for keeping the heart pumping.
  • The strongest muscles in relation to the job they have to do is the external muscles of the eye which are large and about 100 times stronger than they need to be in relation to the small size and weight of the eyeball.
  • The tongue has 8 muscles, so is technically not the strongest muscle in the body.
  • Muscle memory is created by practicing an action over and over again. Our muscles fine tune themselves, becoming more precise and exact in what they do. So practice is very important when learning a sport!!


Look at the chart above to learn the names of a few of your major muscles. Then play a game of Simon Says to help you memorize their names. You might say “Simon says to point to the hamstrings” or “Simon says flex your biceps.” Make a more difficult challenge by saying “Simon says use your quadriceps and hamstrings.” What activities can you come up with?

Now let someone else be Simon and give the instructions and see if you remember all the muscle names!


An organ is a group of tissues in a living organism that has a specific form and function. We have a lot of organs that work together to keep us alive. Your skin is the biggest organ of your body, and it’s an external organ because it’s located on the outside of the body. Other organs include your brain, lungs, heart, liver, stomach, intestines, and kidneys, and they’re called internal organs because they’re located on the inside of your body. Take a minute to learn about your body organs by reading below and watching the video.

  • Brain – Perhaps the most important organ in our body is the brain. It is here where we think, feel emotions, make decisions, and control the rest of the body. The brain is protected by a thick skull and fluid.
  • Lungs – Lungs bring oxygen into our blood stream.
  • Heart – The heart is considered by many to be the center of life. Having a healthy heart helps to keep the rest of the organs and body healthy as well.
  • Liver – The liver performs all sorts of vital functions in our bodies from helping us to break down food in digestion to ridding our bodies of toxins.
  • Stomach – The stomach holds our food when we first eat it and secretes enzymes that help to break down our food before it goes to the small intestine.
  • Intestines – You have small and large intestines that absorb most ingested food and water and excrete solid waste material.
  • Kidneys – The kidneys help to keep our bodies clean from toxins and other waste products. Without our kidneys our blood would quickly become poisoned.



Grab some sidewalk chalk and have someone in your family trace around your body on the sidewalk. Can you draw your internal organs inside the outline of your body where they are according to the chart? Try to include them all!

If you have a printer, you can print the organ templates from UM Mott’s Children’s Hospital to draw exactly the right shape.



Measure your lung capacity with a balloon and measuring tape. If you don’t have a measuring tape, substitute yarn and a ruler!


Your heart is an organ that pumps blood throughout your body. It is largely made up of a type of muscle tissue called cardiac muscle. This muscle contracts when your heart beats, allowing blood to pump through your body. 


Find out how fast your heart is beating by taking your own pulse! Your heart rate, or pulse, is the number of times your heart beats per minute. Watch this video to learn more.


Now take your own pulse. First find how fast your heart beats when you are watching a video. Now, step away from the computer and exercise. You can run, jump, skip, dance or do calisthenics such as jumping jacks, push ups, squats. When you get tired, stop and take your pulse again to see how it changed. Was it faster or slower?


Many internal organs make up your digestive system, including your stomach, intestines, and liver. Learn the names for the parts of your digestive system, then try some hands-on science from UM to learn more!




We all know that exercise is important for us. Watch this video and move along with it to learn about why exercise is so important.



You can help yourself and your loved ones stay healthy by washing your hands often, especially during these key times when you are likely to get and spread germs:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage
  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, you should also clean hands after you have been in a public place and touched an item or surface that may be frequently touched by other people, such as door handles, tables and shopping carts.

Watch this video to learn the importance of using soap when you wash your hands! You might even want to recreate the experiment for some extra fun.

Make hand washing fun by repeating this song twice while you wash!

If you’re happy and you know it, wash your hands!

If you’re happy and you know it, wash your hands!

If you’re happy and you know it, soap and water surely shows it,

If you’re happy and you know it, wash your hands!


Find out by doing this UM experiment with bread and resealable bags!


Can you name the common instruments used by physicians to make sure you’re healthy? Make a guess, then check your answer!

Stethoscope to listen to your heart.

Otoscope to examine your eyes, ears, and nose.

Sphygmomanometer to check your blood pressure.

Reflex Hammer to test your reflexes.

Thermometer to check your body’s temperature.


Write a story where you wake up inside the body of a medical school professor, standing in front of a large room of new medical students. As a young person who is supposed to teach this class, how might you help doctors better understand and help younger people? 

Click the button below to get started. Read Shel Silverstein’s poem Sick for symptom ideas!


SICK by Shel Silverstein

“I cannot go to school today!”

Said little Peggy Ann McKay

“I have the measles and the mumps

A gash, a rash, and purple bumps

My mouth is wet, my throat is dry

I’m going blind in my right eye


My tonsils are as big as rocks

I’ve counted sixteen chicken pox

And there’s one more, that’s seventeen

And don’t you think my face looks green?


My leg is cut, my eyes are blue

It might be instamatic flu

I cough and sneeze and gasp and choke

I’m sure that my left leg is broke


My hip hurts when I move my chin

My belly button’s caving in

My back is wrenched, my ankle’s sprained

My ‘pendix pains each time it rains


My nose is cold, my toes are numb

I have a sliver in my thumb

My neck is stiff, my spine is weak

I hardly whisper when I speak

My tongue is filling up my mouth


I think my hair is falling out

My elbow’s bent, my spine ain’t straight

My temperature is 108

My brain is shrunk, I cannot hear

There’s a hole inside my ear

I have a hangnail, and my heart is… what?


What’s that? What’s that you say?

You say today is Saturday? Ha-ha

G’bye, I’m goin’ out to play”


Visit our Grossology webpage to learn more about the grosser part of body science.

Check out books from the library or on Hoopla!