We’ve been learning all about the body; our most recent topic has been muscles and bones. It’s hard for kids to understand that there are things inside of them since they can’t see it. So, with the help of some simple ingredients we explored the most basic elements of the legs-bones, muscles, fat, and blood- in our kitchen, and ended the lesson with a tasty snack!
Premade pizza dough (skin)
Mozzarella cheese stick (bone)
Shredded cheddar cheese (fat)
Objective: (for 3-5 year olds)
Child will be able to identify skin, fat, bone, and blood.
Child will be able to briefly explain the function of:
Skin-helps us feel
Blood-sends oxygen and nutrients around our body
Bone-helps us stand up and makes blood
Muscles-helps us move
A note on objectives: these are variations on the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills and are likely very similar to objectives for prek in most states. The expectation is not that the child will master the objective after just one lesson, but rather that they are simply working towards mastery over time
Intro: Draw pictures and/or show poster or books showing the different parts of the body – specifically the muscles and bones. Have child feel flexed and nonflexed muscles. Touch boney parts of body like knuckles and ankles.
Cooking: Roll out pizza dough and cut into as many sections as you have Mozzarella bones. Spread with Marinara; sprinkle cheese; wrap salami around mozzarella; and roll up squeezing and pinching edges to make sure that the cheesy goodness doesn’t leak out during baking. Bake according to dough directions-possibly adding a few minutes to get the insides cooked through. Wait for them to cool completely before cutting or else it’ll all just ooze out.
Involving Kids: Name and explain the function of each body part as the child helps roll out the dough (skin), spread the Marinara (blood), sprinkle the cheesy (fat),and place the salami wrapped mozzarella on each shin bone. Encourage them to find the body parts on themselves. When they’re baked and cooled cut them open and compare the cross section to the picture of the shins bone.
I was actually shocked at how well this turned out and super proud when Maxwell presented daddy with a shin bone at dinner while informing him that fat helps keep us warm. Caution-if you eat too many of these “shin bones” you might get very very warm.