People are inherently curious creatures, but kids take curiosity to a whole new level. The average kid asks 288 questions per day! That is nuts! But yes, that sounds about right, because all of the questions can certainly make you feel a little nutty.
Luckily there is one subject that fascinates kids that I happen to know a little bit about: the human body. Even if you’re not an expert, there are so many fun and simple activities you can do with little ones to help teach the basics (and not-so-basic) of just what is going on under your skin.
This is perhaps my favorite of the bunch, and BONUS it’s pretty much free if you have a few basic supplies around. Simply have the kid lie down either on a piece of large paper (we love these rolls from Ikea) or outside on the driveway/sidewalk and draw their outline with crayons, markers, chalk, pencils, I think you get it. Now start adding in the anatomy together. Don’t worry if you’re not a Certified Medical Illustrator; hopefully you realize that the brain goes inside the head, and some squiggly lines inside an oval shape make a great brain. Just do your best! Or better yet, look up some basic anatomy online and learn something new today. You know you’ve always wondered what the spleen is anyway.
This nifty little magnetic puzzle set has four different anatomy levels: surface anatomy (skin), muscles, organs, and bones. The key cards come in a variety of different languages as well, so if you’re interested in learning anatomical terms in 8 other languages, you’re in luck! It also includes a pointer stick and hanging magnetic board, so little ones can play teacher and feel big and important.
You may not realize it, but there are many parts of your internal anatomy that can be seen under your skin. For instance, make a fist and check out those knuckles—it’s pretty easy to see the detailed shape of the distal ends of your metacarpals, er, the bones in your hands. If you’re lucky, you can even see the lines of the ligaments wrapping themselves over the bones. Cool, right? If you have an anatomy book, break it out with the child and look over your hands, feet, and head to start. See what muscles, bones, and ligaments you can see and feel.
My son enjoys Alphanatomy so much that he decided to write and illustrate his own new version. Not proud here at all, not at all. We especially enjoy the iPad version now available on iTunes. Check it out today!