Thursday, February 26, 2015

Brain and Nervous System Study~ 7 Resources and Activities /wwrw

We're wrapping up our central nervous system/brain study and
 I'd love to share some of the highlights of our  unit. 
I don't use a science "spine" or text in general, as I've found none that appeal to me,
 over the ten years that we've been homeschooling. 
Either I'm waaaaaay too picky or
science textbook  publishers leave a tremendous amount to be desired?
Actually, it's  a little of both!
So  enjoy a peek into our recent science unit...
perhaps you'll find a resource that grabs you...
maybe you can even share one of your own in the combox for  all who stop by!
We'd all appreciate if you did so!

~ 1 ~

The Brain~ by  Seymour Simon 
What a fantastic journey our the human brain! 

Simon is pretty much our favorite non fiction author and
I'm sure you have a  plethora of his books on your shelves too.
Just terrific fun and loads of facts.
We'd read about a  few areas of the brain  in Seymour Simon's  book and then 
moved on to the following website.........>

~ 2 ~

Inner Body 
This interactive website is simply perfect for ongoing investigation of the
brain and nervous system study.
Of course in depth activities around all the body systems can be found here too
and we're anticipating returning when we study
the digestive and muscular systems over the next few months.
Go check it out..but I want you.....
it's addicting and an hour, minimally, will pass before you know it.....!

~ 3 ~

The Dover Human Anatomy Coloring Book
 plus the resource, below in 4,were The Best
books we could have used for our brain/nervous system study,
In particular the Anatomy Coloring Book is beautiful
 for its simple yet detailed description of neurons, each part and function.

This resource has been one of a few that have proven 
invaluable for not only our nervous system/brain study,
but also our recent  skeletal system unit.
The content is rather extensive, but why not introduce some weighty concepts?
Our kids are capable of soooooo much more than we assume.
If they internalize the basics, great and if they learn even more in depth info, even better.

~ 4 ~
The Human Body
100 Reproducible Activities for Grades 5-8

Unlike the  anatomy coloring book, above, the pages in this resource are minimally detailed
 and wonderful  for culminating a lesson and even for testing:

Yep, I'm the queen of drill and kill. so while the unit was undoubtedly fun, 
my son had to know all the parts and functions of the brain, nervous system and neurons.
This good old fashioned fill-in-the-blank book helped a lot.
We also used  flash cards before his unit test.

~ 5 ~

To intro or review any topic, we love the science guy.

~ 6 ~

~Create a Clay Brain~
My son's super crafty and enjoys developing his own creations,
whether for "fun," or to correlate with a topic of study.
We started with a lump of clay from this 25 pound package that I bought on amazon.
It's the  Amaco brand of air dry, moist clay and even though it's  a massive box,
it only cost about $18. 
We go through craft supplies like crazy; so it's perfect for us.

My son just created away, using a few of the books described above to guide him.


If you don't have those titles on hand and you'd still like to sculpt a brain,
you can also use this diagram from WebMD too.

I ordered this brain cross section model
but it has yet to arrive and I can NOT wait to
use and enjoy it with my son.
Looks pretty cool doesn't it?

~ 7 ~

Nervous System Sugar Cookies
Eating the nervous system?
Sounds kinda gross...but really,
" drawing" the central nervous system in icing was tons of fun and reinforcement!
Here's what we used--
this page from The Human Body as a guideline,
icing,  food color, sugar cookie dough.

Just bake, decorate and enjoy!

I'm happy to linkwith Jessica'sWhat We're Reading Wednesdayand 
Please visit Kelly and Jessica for tons of wonderful posts!

Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious tim 
here at my home on the web!

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Until next time,


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  1. Ah, I remember loving all those books back when I was home schooled (my parents taught me and my siblings at home all the way through high school!). :)

  2. What a fun post. It brought me right back to my college neuroscience class! My then-boyfriend now-husband gave me such a hard time about 'coloring for class' when we would have these complex coloring pages but it really helped me to be able to identify different parts of the brain. I love the hands on and multifaceted learning you have incorporated here. I am going to put this post in a link from one of my posts on the teenage/tween brain. Thanks for sharing! Coming to you from CWBN on FB- MaryRuth

    1. Aw, thanks for inc this in that post of yours..what a lovely honor......
      So great of you to stop by and leave such a kind comment!! I really appreciate that!

      Yes I do love the hands on-- they learn SO much more by being interactive, right! Who would've thought that the coloring book would have such an impact...but it's prefect!

      Thanks for visiting!

  3. Hey Chris! Thanks for sharing. We are studying the human body next year and have started to collect ideas. These are great. I had a few in my amazon wishlist. Now I know they are good picks.

    1. Well, great! It's always good to get a sneak peek into a title you're considering! I'm happy this may have helped a bit!

      Thanks for stopping by, my friend! Hope all is well!!

  4. Great stuff. My kid is still too little to learn about this, but I have a friend who will be interested in this, her son is all about human body and brain! I will forward her this :)

  5. Hey Chris,

    Thanks so much for the great resources! This is awesome!

  6. Great ideas we are doing the human body this year too...have you looked into science explorer book...I am using that but like you I create my own science curriculum. I will be looking into some of the resources you listed

    1. No I've not heard of that series, Anne Marie! Thx for sharing!

      I've been loving your anatomy posts! You guys are so creative in your HSyou!!~~

      Thanks for visiting!

  7. We are looking at anatomy and physiology next year too and this is very helpful! Thanks, Chris!

    1. Well, that's awesome, Jessica!! I hope perhaps one or two of these is helpful for you!!

      Thanks for visiting!

  8. Hi, visiting from #HSBAT. What a great list of resources! I love that there is a coloring book for Human Anatomy, how fun! Thanks for sharing :)

    1. Hi there~ Thanks for visiting...I know I love the anatomy coloring's perfect!



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