10 Terrific Human Body and Anatomy Websites for Kids
Kids, teens and college students will find learning human anatomy a breeze with these websites, games, and free apps exploring the mystery and genius of the human body. The human body interactives that are available online give students a phenomenal view into human anatomy.
These sites transform textbook illustrations of the skeleton, organs, and body systems into simulations of live processes. And they are revolutionizing how kids learn human anatomy.
There are dozens of free anatomy interactives and games for kids. Here I describe ten of the best websites where students can explore the human body. They range from simplified games for elementary kids to sophisticated interactives of all body systems for high school and college students.
The Human Body eBook for Grades 3-5
A class of children from a Colchester, Vermont elementary school put the Human Body eBook together. Read-along passages are highlighted as kids learn basic body organs, the skeletal system, and their function.
This is a great activity idea for upper-grade elementary students. Have your students put together an eBook of anatomy concepts they need to know at their grade level. Perhaps combine it with a project where they make their own model of the human body, illustrated in the video below.
Body Parts and Functions for Grades 3-5
In Body Parts, from e-Learning for Kids, children get a tour of the human body with a guide who shows them the functions of each system.
Included systems are:
- bones, joints and muscles
- the senses
- the brain
- the heart and blood
- lungs and diaphragm
- stomach and intestines
The guide on this site narrates as you touch the explained body part and the accompanying text matches the narration. A brief quiz at the end has a question corresponding to each explained body system.
Interactive Anatomy Learning Tools Grades 3-5
The Children's University of Manchester has several interactive learning tools for kids to learn about the brain, teeth, skeleton, and digestive system.
- Brain and Senses illustrates how the senses work and the parts of the brain responsible for processing each of the senses, personality, and movement.
- Body and Medicines guides kids through an exploration of the skeleton, bones, and digestive system. Kids will also learn about the tests and instruments used to diagnose illnesses and the drugs used to treat them. There's also a section that illustrates how kids can distinguish good drugs from bad drugs.
- Teeth and Eating explores the uses and structure of teeth, types of teeth, and a timeline of the age at which each type of tooth grows in. This is followed by proper teeth and mouth hygiene and healthy foods for teeth.
Bone Biology for Grades 5-8
Bone Biology for Kids was created by Dr. Susan Ott at the University of Washington to help middle school students understand bone structures and composition.
Dr. Ott offers detailed, well-illustrated explanations of the types of cells that make up bones and an A-Z glossary of terms related to bone biology. Students will learn about bone diseases and fractures, what makes bones strong, and how to strengthen bones.
After reading all about bones and looking through the microscope slides, play Bone Quiz Yahtzee, an interactive game on the facts explained on the website. (The game only works in some browsers, such as Internet Explorer.)
My Recommended Anatomy Book for Children
This first guide to human anatomy is wonderfully illustrated for young children and very helpful for curious kids. My elementary students have all been fascinated by what goes on under our skin, and this DK reference does a terrific job of explaining and illustrating human anatomy in terms that even a first grader can understand.
Blood Typing for Grades 6-12
The Blood Typing Game is based on discoveries by Nobel prize winner Karl Landsteiner in 1901. Students read illustrated passages to learn about blood groups, blood typing, and blood transfusions. Then they're ready to play the game.
You have to help three victims of a car accident in urgent need of blood transfusions. Take a blood sample, test it using the blood typing kit, then select the correct blood type and rh factor for the transfusion. If you choose the right one, the patient survives. Pick the wrong one, and they're dead!
Other popular human anatomy and biology games on NobelPrize.org include:
Human Body Explorer Videos for Grades 6-12
The Discovery Channel's Human Body: Pushing the Limits series offers more than a dozen three-minute video segments showing the human anatomy in action beneath the skin. The website also provides more in-depth explorations of sight, strength, sensation, and brain power.
Students can then use the Human Body Explorer interactive to put together pieces of the eye, see how much strain our bodies handle in everyday activities, and view the central, peripheral, and autonomous nervous systems. The culminating activity is the "Brain Power" interactive quiz and picture-matching game.
Explore the Human Body for Grades 3-12
Explore the Human Body, from National Geographic, takes you on a journey through the brain, heart, digestive system, lungs, and skin. This website has the best simulations of these body systems at work.
While the extensive written material is more appropriate for high school students, teachers can use the animations for anatomy studies with young children as well.
For instance, the "Feed the System" simulation illustrates:
- how different types of foods are processed by the digestive system as they are consumed
- the anatomy and pumping action of the heart
- how the lungs function and what happens in the lungs of a person with asthma
- what parts of the brain are stimulated by different sensations
- what happens inside the skin as it ages
Mapping Memory in 3D for Grades 9-12
Mapping Memory in 3D, from National Geographic, is all about brain anatomy. Simulations help students to see what happens in the brain to process visual information, auditory information, motions, and sensations.
It also helps students visualize how thought and reason are processed by working memory. Students learn how the brain makes memories, stores them, and how it forgets information as it ages. Included is a progressive simulation of what happens in a brain damaged by Alzheimer's Disease.
Interactive Anatomy Tutorials for High School and College
J. Crimando's interactive anatomy tutorials do an excellent job of identifying body components for all the major body systems. The tutorials and quizzes encompass 11 systems:
These are particularly helpful to high school students taking AP physiology or anatomy courses.
Human Anatomy App for iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch
Kids in grades 8-12 can learn the basics of major body systems with the Human Anatomy app for iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch. Labeled diagrams display the skeletal, muscular, digestive, nervous, endocrine, and reproductive systems.
Tap on a body part to learn more about its function, then go to the quiz section to label body parts.
More Anatomy Resources for Kids
- Anatomy Flash Cards for Children | Android - Google Play
Basic flash card app to help children preK-2 identify parts of the body. Intended for very young children only.
- Human Parts of the Body for Kids & Students
Listing of 40 lessons, interactives, and apps to help K-12 students learn the workings of human anatomy.