Oy. Teachers, we are in the final stretch. Can I get a hallelujah? No? You’re too tired to “hallelujah”? I feel you.
But the show must go on. In science, we are currently learning about the digestive system. I don’t remember where I got this activity, but it is always a hit. It takes a little bit of prep work beforehand, but it’s so much fun.
Put the candy of your choice inside a Ziploc bag. Put that Ziploc bag (or bags) inside a larger grocery bag. I used reusable ones, so they don’t get torn. You’ll see why that’s important in a moment. Fill the grocery bag with balls of paper (or any kind of unnecessary scraps). Put that bag inside a larger trash bag. You’ve got yourself a Russian nesting doll situation. Then inside the trash bag you can continue to put balls of paper or whatever inside. Tie it up.
Students are assigned major parts of the digestive system:
I make them wear big labels with their body part written across it because I’m a horrible person who likes to see kids with “rectum” necklaces.
The students who are molars are instructed to come up and start tearing apart the “food”. It’s always a coveted role.
My saliva students then get to come up and use a spray bottle to spray everything down. We talk about how the molars provide mechanical digestion and the saliva is chemical.
The pancreas gets to come up and continue the “wash and breakdown” with pancreatic juices.
Next up, small intestine.
The small intestine is instructed to dig through the “food” and find the “nutrients”.
The small intestine passes the “nutrients” to the blood, and the blood distributes it to the rest of the body aka the class. (I don’t have any pictures of this chaos.)
The large intestine then comes and soaks up all the water.
Then the rectum gets rid of all the waste.
It’s a very memorable activity without a lot of effort. Give it a whirl and let me know how it goes. Or just try your best to survive the next month and a half. We’ve got this.