What do you think your body would be like without bones? It’d be all wobbly like jelly. The skeleton acts like scaffolding holding up our soft tissues. This collection of skeleton activities is great for learning about the structure and function of the skeleton and how to maintain healthy bones!
Skeleton Activities for Kids
Did you know the Human skeleton is made up of more than 200 bones?
What are the function of the skeleton?
- It supports the body.
- It protects delicate organs, for example the ribcage protect the lungs and heart and the skull protects the brain.
- It helps the body move, along with muscles. Muscles are attached to bones, when muscles contract and relax the bones move.
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 for bone health
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
- 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?
Bone Activities for little people
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, and bought modroc 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.
More science ideas for little ones
Try these fun doctor role play ideas. Including making a stethoscope.
Have a go at one of my human body science ideas for preschoolers.
Skeleton Activities for Primary School
Make models of the spine ( some edible ) and use paper to find out how strong bones are!
Another idea is to make a bendy bone. To so this you just need to soak a chicken bone in vinegar for a few days.
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.
Key Stage 3
Human Organ Systemsw
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.
Last Updated on June 25, 2021 by Emma Vanstone
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.