Skeletal System Song and Lesson Plans

Teachers can use a skeletal system song to help students learn science curriculum in a way that won't be easily forgotten.

By Barbara Moseley


Skeletal System With Music Lesson Plans

Sometimes you find great information in unlikely places, such as the television show "Hannah Montana." This would not be the first place I'd look for songs about science-related curriculum, but Miley Cyrus and her dad have one that can help students learn the names of the bones in the skeletal system. They wrote a perky song about the skeletal system called, “Everybody Knows the Bones.” This is not an easy song to learn, but the rewards could be great. I would suggest it for students in fourth through eighth grades.

You could also use the traditional folk song, “Dem Bones,” which most of us sang as children. This song is a good match for kindergarten through third grade. Another good introduction to this science topic for kindergarteners could be the song “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes.” This song gets the idea across that our body is connected and each part has its own name. Another less known song is called, “Bones” by Ron Brown. It lists several parts of the skeletal system.  All in all, songs that are short, simple, and catchy are the best for memorization. 

For a longer project, many students enjoy making up their own song.  You can pre-select a traditional folk song and give them a list of items they need to remember, for example, the skeletal system. In creating a new song, they will inadvertently learn the material with little to no pain. For a fun song choice, try changing the lyrics to “Bad to the Bone” by George Thorogood. In fact, I would love to hear it, so please send it to me. Maybe your class could be featured on Lesson Planet.

There are many ways to learn about the skeletal system including puzzles, games, art, and music. Having fun and making things enjoyable for the student and teacher is always best. Below are some suggested lesson plans about the skeletal system.

Skeletal System Activities And Lesson Plans: 

Body System: Students identify the major organs of the body, such as the heart, lungs, and brain and describe their primary function. This is an activity good for younger students.

Dem Bones: Students feel and draw the bones in their bodies. They compare their drawings to those of their peers. Students make a tent from a bed sheet. Supports needed to make the tent work are compared to the bones of their bodies.

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes:  Students gain a greater understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the muscular system, the skeletal system and connective tissue. 

It's All About Me:  Students examine the five major body systems (lesson found under first grade/science). They complete a Body Book, construct a paper skeleton, examine x-rays, view demonstrations of muscles, simulate the circulatory system, and conduct an experiment regarding the digestive system.

The Mozart Effect:  Students investigate the effect music has on short term memory. They graph on a spreadsheet how retaining knowledge in a biology classroom can be improved by performing experiments to music.


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Barbara Moseley