Pre-College Programs
SPARK - Science for Middle School

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Understanding the Human Body: An Exploration of Anatomy - Junior SPARK

This course is expected to run but has not yet been scheduled.

Course Description

Have you ever wondered how your body does all the things that it does?

Our bodies contain 206 bones and over 600 muscles, all coordinated by a central computer called the brain. In this course, you will learn how your body's components work as one, to keep you going everyday.

This exciting hands-on course will provide an opportunity to answer your questions about the human body. Hands-on dissection of various animal organs, using prepared human tissue slides, as well as models, we will investigate the skeletal, muscular, cardiovascular and nervous systems, and how they are all connected. We will learn more about of what happens inside a doctor’s office when we use a variety of medical devices including the stethoscope, Babinski hammer, sphygmomanometer, electrocardiogram and electromyogram to assess our vital body functions under various conditions.

Students who complete this course will become familiar with four of the human body’s systems. They will experience how to flap a freshly dissected chicken wing by manipulating the extensor and flexor muscles in the forearm of the wing. They will experience how to eject fluid from a sheep heart and dissect the heart. They will dissect a sheep brain and experience the inner workings of the cow eye. Students will become knowledgeable with the equipment to assess muscle force and heart activity on their lab partner under various physiologic conditions. They will carry out sensory experiments to further their understanding about the nervous system.

Students are middle school students with varying backgrounds. There are no specific prerequisites, but students should be strong in biology, critical thinking and data analysis. Students should be prepared for an intensive laboratory experience, which is based on dissection of various animal organs and the use of medical instruments including electromyogram and electrocardiogram. Students should have a willingness to participate in all class activities.

*This Junior SPARK course is designed for students, 12 years and older, who are currently in the 6th and 7th grades (entering 7th and 8th grades Fall 2014). Older students are encouraged to register for our Senior SPARK courses.