1st grade 2nd grade 3rd grade 4th grade 5th grade 6th grade 7th Grade Challenge A Human Body Science

How do Muscles Work – Human Body Project for Kids

We’ve been learning about the human body for kids in anatomy this year. We started by making our human body project where kids could see the bones inside of them. Bones make sense because they can feel the hard  object when they press on their bodies. Next we added the organs which also made sense to them as they know food goes somewhere – the stomach. Next up is teaching them about muscles. While they can make a muscle, this concept is a little more abstract. So we did this fun muscular system for kids activity to help students learn how do muscles work. Try this quick human body project with preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th graders too.

We've been learning about the human body for kids in anatomy this year. We started by making our human body project where kids could see the bones inside of them. Bones make sense because they can feel the hard  object when they press on their bodies. Next we added the organs which also made sense to them as they know food goes somewhere - the stomach. Next up is teaching them about muscles. While they can make a muscle, this concept is a little more abstract. So we did this fun muscular system for kids activity to help students learn how do muscles work. Try this quick human body project with preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th graders too.

How do Muscles Work

As kids begin to learn about the muscular system for kids they will learn that they have over 600 muscles in their bodies! Mucles help with  many things from blinking, to lifting your plate, to making your heart beat to pump blood all throughout your body. There are 3 types of muscles including:

  • skeletal muscles – These muscles are attached to our bones or skeletal system to we can move. Typically these muscles have 2 opposing pairs such as the biceps and triceps on the front and back of the upper arm. We control when these muscles move.
  • smooth muscles – These muscles are in thin sheets and help move food along our digestive tract, bloof vessels, and more. These muscles move without us even having to think about them.
  • cardiac muscles – This muscle contracts and release our heart which gives us a heart beat, moves blood to nourish our bodies, and allows us to lie.

This activity helps children learn about voluntary skeletal muscles and how they work in pairs. THis is a VERY simple visual on how do muscles work to give young children a basic understanding. This easy human body project is perfect for preschoolers, kindergartners, grade 1, grade 2, grade 3, and grade 4 students.

muscle project for kids

Muscular System for Kids

To make this project you only need a few simple materials you probably already have on hand:

  • 3 long cardbaord tubes (like  from paper towels)
  • 2 long balloons (like from making balloon animals)
  • yarn, wire, or long twisty tie from garden staking
  • hole punch or scissors
  • mitten (for visualization)
  • sharpie or markers to label the bones

Start by trimming your cardboard tubes so you have one long one (uncut) and two equally long rolls that are a couple inches shorter than the main one.

cardboard tube activity

Human Body Project

Hole punch one end of each cardboard tube (or poke carefully with kitchen scissors). You need matching holes on each tube.

human arm model for kids

Slide yarn or wire through holes so that the smaller tubes sandwich the long roll as shown.

balloon activity for kids

Using two long narrow balloons, like are used to make balloon animals, blow them up about 1/3 of the way. We used red balloons so they would be more the color of muscle.  Press the air to the center of the balloon, leaving lots of unused balloon on either end.

Have your children lable the bones and muscles. You shoudl have the humerus as the long bone and the pair of bones from your wrist to your elbow are the radius and ulna. For the balloon muscles, you have the bicep muscle and behind your arm the tricep muscle. Remember how skeltal muscles tend to come in pairs?

Human Body Project

Human Body Science Experiments

Now tie each of the tricep muscle balloon to the end of the large humerus bone. Do NOT knot the balloon itself, but just tie the balloon to the roll loosely. You want the muscle to be able to stretch and contract for your visual. Repeat with the bicep msucle by tieing the one end at the same spot as the upper part of the humerus bone and the bottom of the bicep mucle to the spot where the radius and ulna come together and use the balloon to draw them even closer.

Human Body Muscles for Kids

Human Body Muscles for Kids

This is how your project should look. We added the glove to the end to help kids visualize this abstract model was indeed their arm!

Human Body Science Experiments

Muscles for Kids

Demonstarte how you can extend the model arm flat. What happens to the balloon? The muscle (balloon also) stretches and becomes flatter. when the arm does a curl up again the muscle contracts and the muscle (balloon) bulges.  Have kids try with their own arms and feel the bicep muscle extend and flatten. Now have them contarct their forearm and feel the bicep muscle bulge.

When the biceps contract the triceps will relax, this allows our arm to bend. When we want to straighten our arm back out, the biceps will relax and the triceps will contract. Muscle pairs allow us to move back and forth.

Finally, here are some fun facts about muscles for kids:

  • Did your mother ever tell you it takes more work to frown than to smile? She was right! It only takes 17 muscles to smile, but 43 muscles to frown.
  • Shivering is caused by hundreds of muscles contracting and relaxing all over your body. This motion produces heat to make you warmer.
  • Your longest muscle is called the sartorius. The Santorius runs from the hip to the knee and helps you bend at the knee.
  • Can you guess what the strongest muscle in the body is? Depending on how you measure…. the heart or the jaw. The heart works hard; it beats 3,600,000 times a year. The jaw is incredibly powerful and helps you chew; in fact the bite strength of an average man is between 117 to 265 pounds.
  • The smallest muscle is in your body is in the ear.  ear and is called the stapedius.
This fun hands-on human body for kids activity is such a fun way to learn about our amazing bodies! These free printable Human Body Playdough Mats are a fun way for kids of all ages to learn about what is inside our body. Children will make a play doh human body with these playdough mats to learn about our  bones, skeletal system, muscles, organs, play doh digestive system, and more! Use these playdough mats as part of a study of the human body for kids study with toddler, preschool, pre k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, and 3rd grade students. Kids will love that they can add the body parts to the free playdough mats making it a truly hands on science activity. ear-science-project skeletal system worksheet Kids will have fun learning about the skeletal system for kids with these fun, hands-on skeletal system project ideas for preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, and 6th graders. From Lego brick skeletal system activities and candy skeletal system, to Playdough skeletal system and skeletal system printables - we have lots of creative skeletal system project ideas.

Human Body for Kids

We continued exploring the five senses with these grade school and human body preschool activities:
  • Grab this free printable 5 senses preschool printables to explore the senses of sight, taste, sound, smell, and touch
  • Human Body human body playdough mats – lots of choices to learn about various systems of the body including simple for preschoolers, skeletal system, organs, muscles, nerves, and more!
  • Teach kids about human cells for kids with hands on activities, free printable reader, human cell worksheets, and more!
  • Human Body Printables makes a printable book that teaches students all about their heart, brain, muscles, cells, skin, bones, lungs, stomach, intestines, and bladder
  • 4 EPIC Skeletal System Project ideas for kids – using things like pasta, life saver gummies, lego, and more you can learn about the human body in a fun memorable way
  • Free Skeletal System Worksheets for Kids – everything you need to teach kids about their bodies!
  • Kids will love learning about the ear with this model of ear for school project

Learn about the Parts of the Brain for Kids with this fun brain activity for kids and handy brain worksheets! Children will learn about the functions of the brain for kids as part of our human body lesson. Use this brain project with elementary age students in first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, and 6th garde students. Simply print pdf file with brain diagram for kids and you are ready to play and learn with hands-on human body activities for kids! This fun, hands-on lungs for kids lesson will help you make a working lungs model for kids using a plastic bottle and balloon. This human body for kids project is great for kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, 6th garde, and 7th grade students. We will show you how to make a lung model that will help children understand how this important organ works with a human body activity for kids! If you are learning about the human body for kids you have probably explores the bones, muscles, and important organs like the heart, brain, and lungs. Now it's time to explore blood for kids! This hands-on activity and EASY blood model is a great visual of what makes up blood while being a silly blood activity for kids at the same time! Your preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grad, 4th grade, 5th grade, and 6th graders will love this human body activity for kids!

Learn about the human heart for kids with this fun lesson on the human body for kids! Kids will learn information, discover how to make a heart model out of playodugh and a working heart science project plus review what you've learned with our free printable heart labeling worksheets. These human body activities for kids are fun for elementary age kids in first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, 6th grade, and 7th graders too. Simply print pdf file with label the heart worksheet and you are raedy to learn about the heart for kids! eye science project for kids this outrageously FUN human body preschool project using free printables allows kids to learn about what is inside my body Have you ever stopped to marvel at your hands?  Your hands can pick up small objects, write with a pencil, paint beautiful pictures, and open a stubborn jar of pickles. Help children discover how do hands work with this fun, hands-on human body project. In this human body for kids activity children will make a working hand model for them to discover how do muscles work Try this human body muscles for kids lesson with preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th graders too.

We've been learning about the human body for kids in anatomy this year. We started by making our human body project where kids could see the bones inside of them. Bones make sense because they can feel the hard  object when they press on their bodies. Next we added the organs which also made sense to them as they know food goes somewhere - the stomach. Next up is teaching them about muscles. While they can make a muscle, this concept is a little more abstract. So we did this fun muscular system for kids activity to help students learn how do muscles work. Try this quick human body project with preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, first grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th graders too.

About the author

Beth Gorden

Beth Gorden is the creative multi-tasking creator of 123 Homeschool 4 Me. As a busy homeschooling mother of six, she strives to create hands-on learning activities and worksheets that kids will love to make learning FUN! She has created over 1 million pages of printables to help teach kids ABCs, science, English grammar, history, math, and so much more! Beth is also the creator of 2 additional sites with even more educational activities and FREE printables - www.kindergartenworksheetsandgames.com and www.preschoolplayandlearn.com

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