Skeletons are really some of the first images of anatomy that we see as children, especially around Halloween. So this is a great jumping off point for us. What is a skeleton and what is the backbone? I found this great idea to help answer these questions and decided to get started! All you need is a foam swimming noodle and some thick elastics for tying back hair into a pony tail. You cut the noodle into sections a couple of inches thick. And you’ll need a piece of rope to be the spinal cord.
Tie a knot at the bottom of your piece of rope or spinal cord.
Start stringing your vertebra (foam sections) and discs (thick rubber bands) alternately.
Having anatomy books close at hand helped my munchkin visualize what we were doing. This gave us a chance to talk about patterns, shapes and the functions of these parts.
Putting these pieces of spine on the cord was also great for C’s fine motor skill development. This is a quick and easy project that brought our backbone to life in just 15 minutes which was perfect for the 3-year-old attention span!
P.S. Tomorrow, we’ll explore great books to read on this topic and how the spine can help us keep track of our reading accomplishments!