Theme: Circulatory System
Curricular Integration: This is a fourth grade science unit that focuses on the circulatory system. During this science unit students will develop an understanding of the heart and other major organs involved in the circulatory system. They will also learn how the circulatory system works, the concept of blood pressure, taking a pulse, as well as research the father of cardiovascular medicine, William Henry. In addition to this students will perform a short skit as well as create a museum-style tour of their class projects for younger grades.
Language Arts - Students will create the "K" section of a KWL chart to see what prior knowledge they have on the circulatory system.
Science - Students will view the video The Magic School Bus: Inside Ralphie and take notes. Then as a class will review the facts they learned from the movie.
- Students will complete the "W" section of the KWL chart. (What they "know")
- Students will then listen to a speaker from the American Heart Association who will explain how the circulatory system works.
- Students will then complete the "L" portion of their KWL chart (What they "learned" from the speaker).
- As a class read the story The Incredible Human Body by Esther Weiner.
- After discussing specific facts that are in the book students will then construct a mini-book entitled "Pump Power" which illustrates the parts and functions of the blood.
- Learn the song "My Body Symphony: The Inside Story of Your Whole Body". Or "The Circulatory Song".
- Compare the essential organs of the circulatory system to an orchestra. Students will then choose an instrument section to represent each organ.
Social Studies - Students will construct a map showing how to get through the circulatory system.
Language Arts - Students will use the library and the internet to research information on the father of the circulatory system, William Henry. Then they will write down his accomplishments on index cards and share and discuss with the class.
Math & Science - Compare squeezing a ball to the action of a heart. Students will get into teams of two and one person will squeeze the ball while the other will time. Students will then answer this question, "If your hear beats 70 times per minute, how many times does it beat in an hour?" Then as a class discuss how William Harvey could have used this activity to demonstrate the heart beating.
Language Arts & Health - Students will write a letter to their heart explaining what they will do to keep it healthy.
Art - Students will construct a model of a heart using clay.
Science - Students will use the library and the internet to research how the heart "pumps". They will then complete a Venn diagram comparing the heart pump to a bicycle pump.
Math - Students will learn how to take their pulse. Then they will participate in various physical activities that gets their heart pumping and chart their pulse after each activity. Then, as a class compare their results.
Science - Students will use a stethoscope to listen and compare their heartbeat before and after running.
Homework: Students will measure heart rate of family members.
Math - Students will take the results of their homework and investigate how age affects heart rate. They will then organize their information onto a bar graph.
Social Studies - Students will study different cultures and compare for longevity and rates of disease.
Language Arts & Health - Students will draw from their previous research and create a brochure about healthy living.
Art - Students will each be assigned a part of the circulatory system (heart ect.) then they will practice a short skit about how the circulatory system works for a later production for the younger grades.
Science - Students will go on a field trip to the local hospital.
- Students will invite students in the younger grades for a museum-style tour of their work throughout the circulatory system unit. Projects like their clay heart, healthy living brochure, mini books, ect.
- Students will then perform their short skit, sing the song they learned and read the letters they wrote to their hearts.