You’ve probably heard your mother tell you to eat or drink something to make sure you have strong bones. And having strong bones is super important because our skeletal system for kid holds up our body and allows us to move. But what do you know about your bones for kids? Kids of all ages will be amazed by this simple vinegar experiment bending bones! This human body project for kids is perfect for preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, and 6th graders too.
What are bones made of
Our bodies are made up of 206 bones. Each of these bones is an important part of the skeletal system for kids as it allows us to move and protect our organs. While calcium is the largest thing that makes up our bones, it is just one of the things our bones need. To have strong bones you need to:
- Calcium – to constantly be replenishing old bones cells to keep our bones strong
- Eat lots of vegetables loaded with vitamins and minerals
- Perform strength training to help maintain and grow new bone
- Eat enough protein as it makes up 50% of our bones
- Get plenty of vitamin D and vitamin K to help with absorbing calecium
- Avoid very low-calorie diets that can lower bone density
- Maintain a healthy weight to not damage bones,
- Ensure appropriate levels of magnesium / zinc / omega 3 fats.
While we don’t dive into all the things your bones do need, this bending bones experiment allows elementary age students form preschoolers, kindergartners, grade 1, grade 2, grade 3, grade 4, grade 5, and grade 6 to see what happens when we take away calcium from a bone. Calcium makes up 65% of your bones. In this simple what bones made of we will explore what would happen if we don’t have enought calcium to have strong bones for our human skeleton for kids.
Bones for kids
For this project you need the following ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen:
- cooked chicken bones, washed
- white vinegar
- seltzer (optional to show sustance the bubbles, but doesn’t bend bones)
Don’t throw out that bone from your whole rotisserie chicken! Wash the 2 big bones from chicken drumsticks for this bone experiment for kids. Put one of the bones covered in seltzer. Put the other bone completely covered in white vinegar. Make sure to put a label in front so you know which one is which.
Leave the experiment alone for 48 hours.
Note: The seltzer jar is optional as it really doesn’t impact this strong bones demonstration. The seltzer jar will bubble and kids wil be convinced this is the bone that will do somethingb, but it is just for comparison.
Skeletal system for kids
Now rinse the bones and see what has changed. If the bones is still not pliable. Put it in a fresh dish of vinegar for another 48 hours. You are dissolving the calcium from the bone and just like humans, this chicken may have more or less calcium in their bone. If it is still not bendable at this point try one last time to put it in fresh vinegar for additional 24 hours.
Kids will be amazed that the bone will bend without splitting in half. Ask them what would happen if we didn’t have enough calcium in our bones?
Human skeleton for kids
So what happened in our human body experiment? Vinegar is a mild acid, but it is strong enough to dissolve away calcium in bones. Once the calcium is dissolved, there is nothing to keep the bone hard so all that is left is the soft bone tissue. This demonstration is a greaty way for kids to understand the importance of eating calcium.
Bending Bones Experiment
Take this a step farther with older kids by mixing up the experiment with trying different types of vinegar, different lengs of time in the vinegar, smaller sized bones, etc.
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