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2.1: Planning

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12

Key Ideas

  • Complex animals, such as humans, depend on the blood to transport food, water, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and wastes to and from the body cells.
  • Blood is made up of cells and plasma. Blood diseases compromise the efficiency of the blood delivery system.
  • The lymphatic system is a network of vessels and lymph nodes. Its function is to recycle fluids that leak out of blood vessels back to the circulatory system.


In this section students make a model of the heart and circulatory system that serves as an introduction to the unit. The model can be used as a reference throughout the unit. The need of body cells for delivery of nutrients, water, and oxygen, and the removal of wastes and carbon dioxide is compared to a house in need of a delivery system, with necessities supplied and wastes removed by pipelines, cables, and trucks. This section also explores the ways in which an efficient blood delivery system can be compromised by diseases.



build a model of the heart showing the two pump pathway.

explain the importance of blood circulation.

create a model representing the composition of blood.

describe some effects of blood diseases on homeostasis.

give an example of how the lymphatic system works with the circulatory system to maintain homeostasis.


anemia, antibodies, blood, blood platelets, bone marrow, circulatory system, edema, fibrinogen, gene, heart, hemoglobin, hemophilia, homeostasis, hormones, leukemia, lymph, lymph nodes, lymphatic system, mononucleosis, organ, nucleus, phagocytes, phagocytosis, plasma, red blood cells, respiratory system, sickle-cell anemia, thoracic duct, vessel, white blood cells

Student Materials

Activity 1-1: Pathway of Blood through Your Body

  • Activity Report

Per team

  • Paper cups (4); Straw; Glue; Paper towels; Colored pencils, pens, or paint (blue and red); Tape; Balloon (white); Colored thread (blue and red); Colored yarn (blue and red, 2 pieces 20cm each); Lima beans (3 or 4); Scissors; Ruler (metric)

Activity 1-2: Composition of Blood

Per team

  • Activity Report
  • 2 Beakers, 1,000ml, or clear plastic containers; 3 Containers, one of which is at least 500ml in capacity; Red beans, dried (800); White beans, dried, about twice the size of the red beans (10); Split peas, dried, about half the size of the red beans (75); Salt; Yellow food coloring; Raw egg; Water; Small pieces of paper towel; 2 Graduated cylinders, 25 or 50ml and 500ml

Teacher Materials

Activity 1-1: Pathway of Blood through Your Body

  • Activity Report Answer Key
  • Since your students will be working with glue, you may want to provide paper or plastic to protect the table tops.
  • Charts and other visuals showing the heart and circulation of blood
  • Illustrations of blood vessels

Activity 1-2: Composition of Blood

  • Activity Report Answer Key
  • Charts and other visuals showing the composition and characteristics of blood
  • Resources relating to blood diseases and disorders

Advance Preparation

See Activities 1-1 and 1-2 in the Student Edition.

Activity 1-1: Pathway of Blood through Your Body

  • Ask students to collect large paper cups, straws, red and blue colored pencils, yarn and thread, and lima beans.
  • Construct a model for reference.

Activity 1-2: Composition of Blood

  • Assemble small bags or other containers filled with correct numbers of beans and peas needed for each group.
  • Construct a model for reference.

Interdisciplinary Connections

Art Drawing the pathway of blood through the body can also be done as an art project.

Math Students use data for the composition of blood to construct graphs.

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