Learn about bones

What do you think your body would be like without bones? It’d be all wobbly like jelly.

Let’s learn about bones

Did you know the Human skeleton is made up of more than 200 bones?

Our skeleton has thee main functions:

It supports the body.

It protects organs, for example the ribcage protect the lungs and heart and the skull protects the brain.

It helps the body move, along with muscles.

Can you bend your fingers and feel the finger joins with your other hand?

Muscles help our bones move. If you bend your arm and clench your fist, can you see the shape of the muscle in your upper arm?

How to make sure you have healthy bones

Eat the right foods

Bones need two key nutrients to stay healthy: Calcium and  Vitamin D.

We take in calcium through our diet, good sources of calcium include:

  • Milk, cheese and other dairy products
  • Spinach
  • Sardines
  • Nuts
  • Leafy green vegetables
  • Fortified cereals

Vitamin D helps our bodies absorb calcium, Vitamin D is mostly made under the skin in reaction to sunlight, but is also found in foods such as eggs and oily fish.


Exercise helps make bones stronger by increasing bone density, as well as improving muscle strength, and coordination.

Did you know bone density keeps increasing into the mid 20s?

Doctor Role Play

As a fun way to learn about bones we set up a doctor role play area.

I printed out some X-rays from here, and bought some modrock to make plaster casts inspired by The Imagination Tree. See Anna’s post for full instructions.


We talked about how X-rays are needed to see whether bones are fractured or not and how a plaster cast is used to hold broken bones correctly in place until they are healed.

An X-Ray is a type of radiation which passes straight through the human body. Dense areas such as bone show up lighter than softer areas.

My girls loved putting the casts on their dolls and it led to some great independent role play as they discussed how to make an arm sling for one doll and a wheelchair for another.



I made an easy light box, using a string of battery powered lights in a plastic box for us to view X-rays on which added another fun angle to our play, and really helped my girls visualise the inside of their hands and feet.



Related posts

More bone activities

Learn about your body

Doctor Role Play Ideas

Suitable for:

Key Stage 1 Science

Animals, including Humans

Identify name, draw and label basic parts of the Human Body.

Describe the importance for humans of exercise, eating the right amounts of different types of food, and hygiene.

Early Years Foundation Stage

Physical Development → Health and self-care → ELG

  • Children know the importance for good health of physical exercise, and a healthy diet, and talk about ways to keep healthy and safe. They manage their own basic hygiene and personal needs successfully, including dressing and going to the toilet independently.

activity ideas for learning about bones


There is one comment

  1. Margie

    Nice post. I didn’t know that sardines had calcium. That’s a good one, definitely learned something today.I thought that calcium was mostly in cheeses and milk.

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