This month for the 12 Months of Montessori series, we are concentrating on biology. Little Bee and I decided to study about our amazing bodies. In this hands-on unit study, we learned about our external body parts, various skin colors, skeletal structure, and body systems. Please enjoy this Montessori human anatomy introduction with toddlers and preschoolers.
Body Parts Matching Game
Little Bee enjoys learning by playing matching games. These body part printables are from the “Every Star is Different” blog. These printables include pictures of the external body parts and also include body actions. I introduced the cards to Little Bee by reading the name of each body part to him. He didn’t need me to demonstrate the matching game part because he had already figured it out and began matching the cards on his own. Another way to learn about the human body is to understand how the body works. One way the body works is by performing actions. I introduced the cards to Little Bee by reading the names of each action. Then he examined the photo and proceeded to perform the action in the photo.
A wonderful book for hand actions is called, “Hands Can.” We love to read this book and Little Bee will follow along by performing the actions with his hands.
Naming the External Parts of the Body
These simple body part printables are another way to learn the names for the body parts with a younger child. I also included a wooden mannequin to incorporate a 3-D image with these cards. I read the name of the body part to Little Bee and then he pointed to the correct part on the cards and also on the wooden mannequin. Little Bee also enjoys naming and pointing to the parts on his own body.
We also used these External Parts of the Body three-part cards as a guide while forming the different parts of a human being with play dough. We formed the body in the following order – head, ears, torso, arms, hands, legs, and feet. I named each body part as we formed them into existence.
Little Bee and I used these wonderful play dough mats with flesh toned play dough to form our own human replicas. I presented three different skin tones to my child and taught him that God loves all the colors of human beings.
I presented a model of a skeleton to my toddler with a child life-sized floor skeleton puzzle, and child-sized skeleton three-part cards with a focus on the ribs. I talked to my toddler about the skeleton and how a skeleton is a part of our body located under our skin and muscles. I pointed to the ribs on the cards and then we touched our ribs on our own bodies as well.
Little Bee really enjoyed examining and bending the arms/legs on the 3-D skeleton model I gave him to explore. This is the perfect time of year (Halloween) to find a 3-D skeleton model at an affordable price. I bought this skeleton at Michael’s craft store last year. This skeleton model matched up nicely with our 3-part cards and also our skeletal figure from the Melissa & Doug magnetic human body puzzle.
A child is able to retain more information by being able to use their hands while learning. I absolutely love these photos (below) of Little Bee examining and trying to relate to the skeleton.
I introduced the body systems to Little Bee with this wonderful Melissa & Doug Magnetic Human Body puzzle and also with a fold-out coloring book. We briefly talked about each system of the body and I pointed out a few main features. The puzzle includes: the skeletal system, muscles, nerves, organs, skin, and external anatomy for both a boy and girl. Little Bee enjoyed examining each part of the body and attaching it to the magnetic skeleton.
Here is a fun and creative DIY human body foldable book for your child to color, cut out, and then glue onto paper. It is a simple “stick” like drawing of each part of the human body, which is lovely for a young child to begin understanding the layers of the body.
12 Months of Montessori Series – BIOLOGY