Sunday, April 15, 2012

Teaching Anatomy "From Head to Toe"


I realized part way through the year that one of my children's grasp of anatomy was deficient.  Even though I had taught him anatomy before, four years ago, he could really use a refresher.  One of the products I was given the opportunity to review was AIMS "From Head to Toe" anatomy curriculum.

PhotobucketThis curriculum is specifically geared to students in grades 5-9.  I am using it with my 6th grader, as well as my 8th grader and 4th graders.  The information contained within the curriculum is superb.  It is not a simplified curriculum that I feel you see more often than not unless you are working through a high school anatomy course.  There are definitely concepts that are beyond the young elementary level.  It is not too difficult, however, that my 4th grader cannot understand it.  The method of learning the information is a bit different than I am used to.  Small books are created for each lesson.  I print out the pages for the lesson which are then folded in half and in half again.  These pages are then put together to form a small book which are held together by rubber bands.

The books are easy for the student to use and different from the worksheets that are the norm.  There are some worksheets included in the curriculum, but they are used to supplement the books that are made.

The book also contains a number of experiments to understand the functioning of various systems of the human body.  For example, to understand how the lungs work, there is an experiment which uses a 2-L bottle, two straws, and two balloons.  Also throughout the book, the students make a model of the human body.  There are data-collecting experiments, too.

It is evident that the creators of "From Head to Toe" spent a lot of time developing a curriculum that would be very interesting to the student.  It is full of very creative experiments, well-illustrated books, and hands-on projects that continue the learning beyond the book.

The curriculum is guided by Project 2061 Benchmarks and NRC Standards. At the beginning of each new topic, there are key questions, learning goals, a material list, background information, and management guidelines for preparing for the lesson.  The procedure is also explained.  At the end of the lesson, whether the model is continued or an experiment is completed, there are questions provided to connect learning.

AIMS Educational Foundation can be found at  "From Head to Toe" is located under the Books and Activities link and then under Activity Books.  AIMS offers this activity book as a downloadable ebook in PDF format for $24.95.  The hard copy (in paperback) is also $24.95 and contains a CD with all of the printables for each lesson so you don't need to try to position the book on your copier.

I encourage anyone interested in enhancing their child's learning to peruse the AIMS website.  There are so many wonderful products that integrate math and science.  There are books about electricity, space, building with LEGOs, anatomy, earth, and a variety of math topics.

AIMS can be reached at PO Box 8120, Fresno, CA, 93747.  Their toll-free number is 1-888-733-2467.  If you have a particular question, you can fill out an online form at

DISCLAIMER:  I received this product free of charge in order to use it and provide a honest review.

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