I’m getting the baby ready for bed and Rainbow is being a monkey, bouncing around and generally being a nuisance. I make an offhand comment along the lines of, “Be careful or you’ll break your head.”
She tells me, “I can’t break! I’m made of wood.” I look over to see that by her expression she is dead serious. It occurs to me that while she knows all about her exterior parts, we’ve never really covered the interior bits.
I tell her that she is not made of wood. She insists that “People, all people, are made of wood.”
“My head is made of wood. It’s hard, see?” She says while knocking twice on her head. Okay Pinocchio.
So I try and explain to her that she is made of skin, and blood, muscle and bones. After I’m done putting the baby to bed we head to the computer for an anatomy lesson. I show her some skeletons, some x-rays, and a couple of videos I found. While looking at a picture of a skeleton she exclaims, “Oh look we DO have hearts inside us!” while pointing out the the pelvic bone.
|Photo Credit: biologycorner|
When I’m showing her a skull she notes the teeth and asks if they are bone as well, because they are hard, like wood. She asks about her finger and toe nails. I push the whole calcium is good for you, drink your milk to grow healthy teeth and bones thing.
She then goes off on a ramble to tell me that “The other day when we were at the park there were sticks everywhere. Hard sticks. Made of wood. And long and skinny. And lying around on the ground everywhere. Just like bones.” Right. Creepy.
I know what I really need to do is head down to the library and find a decent kids’ book on anatomy. Searching online for “teach preschooler body parts” just gets me a bunch of articles on sex ed. And not to be morbid, but searching “toddler bones” or “preschooler skeleton” is NOT turning up the info I’m looking for. Once I figured out the keywords I needed were “skeletal system” there are lots of great pages out there, choke full of info. It’s just that it’s all targeted at an older audience. I don’t want to try and teach her the names of all the bones in her body. At this point I just want her to get the concept.
If you’re interested, here’s a few of the better resources I found:
I’m also thinking of picking up this cool wooden puzzle that breaks the body into five layers.
If anyone can recommend a good book or website about anatomy that is targeted at preschoolers I’d love to hear about it!