Body Systems – a biology unit

Body systems is a biology unit requiring no specific prerequisite knowledge. Reference is made to cells but the unit does not assume knowledge of cell structure or function. Suitable for ages 11-14.


Introduction guides students into the topic with recent news about how boa constrictors kill their prey.

Lesson 1 describes the path of food through the digestive tract, explains the main functions of the various parts and distinguishes between physical and chemical digestion.

Lesson 2 describes the functions of the main parts of the respiratory system, explores how we breathe via an interactive simulation and explains how gas exchange occurs.

Lesson 3 explains the roles of the blood, blood vessels and heart in the working of the circulatory system, and how this system relates to digestion and respiration.

Lesson 4 compares and contrasts human body systems with those of sponges, grasshoppers and sharks. Students learn how bodily needs can be met in different ways.

Lesson 5 examines thermoregulation in various species, exploring how animals use evaporation and insulation to regulate their temperatures, and how important surface area is for exchanging or preserving heat.

Science and society profiles a respiratory therapist, and as a societal issue we consider the new trend of nicotine vaping.