When it comes to teaching primary school pupils about the respiratory system I have found that the integration of a number of ICT tools can really enhance the teaching and learning within the classroom.
Strand Unit: Human Life -> Human Life Processes Objective: become aware of and investigate breathing, appreciate the need for oxygen from the air and understand the structure and function of nose, windpipe and lungs.
Other subjects: Maths -> Data -> Representing and interpreting data
I base my own lessons on the excellent lesson plans on the lungs and heart provided by theScience Museum of Minnesota. The first lesson that I undertake with the pupils is to get them to measure their own respiratory rate (Lesson Plan). During this lesson I get the pupils to complete various exercises in the classroom and then record their respiratory rates on thishandout.
Pupils’ Respiratory Rates
Each pupil’s respiratory rate is also entered in a spreadsheet on the class computer and displayed on the IWB. Using spreadsheet software allows for numerous charts to be displayed on the IWB. This allows the pupils to compare and analyse data easily. It is possible to get a free spreadsheet package at openoffice.org. I find that when pupils are working with real mathematical data, which they have created and collected themselves, it enriches their learning.
Pie Chart created using spreadsheet software
Column Chart created using spreadsheet software