Comparative Anatomy (7 of 8): Nervous System

Lesson Title: Comparative Anatomy (7 of 8): Nervous System
Academic Standards: HS-LS1-2; HS-LS1-3
Content Creator: Mrs. Wendy Martin
Level: High School
Duration: 30-40 min
  /  Comparative Anatomy (7 of 8): Nervous System

Objectives

  • Students will understand the function of the nervous system.
  • Students will learn the parts of the human nervous system.
  • Students will understand the difference between a nerve net, a ganglia, and a brain.
  • Students will handle and manipulate a brain.
  • Students will observe the nervous systems of the starfish, squid, dogfish, pig, and cat.
  • Students will learn which sense is most acute in each specimen.
  • Students will observe how cats see.
  • Students will witness an actual brain surgery.

Description

The nervous system is responsible for gathering information from the environment, processing and interpreting the stimulus, and then dictating a motor response to it. The human nervous system is divided into the central nervous system which consists of the brain and spinal cord and the peripheral nervous system which consists of nerves. In this comparative anatomy lesson, students will compare a human nervous system to that of the starfish, squid, dog shark, cat, and pig.Students will observe larger than life examples of each specimen. Students will also handle and manipulate the human brain while observing the variation seen in other animals.Class will also include a 2D video on nervous function and a virtual field trip into an operating room to observe a surgical brain procedure.

Sequence

  1. Show the video "How We Work" to introduce the nervous system.
  2. Discuss the function of the nervous system.
  3. Introduce the starfish nervous system. Focus on:
    1. the nerve ring and regenerative powers
    2. eyespots on the rays
    3. chemoreceptors on the skin
    4. sensory receptors on the tube feet
  4. Allow students to observe the starfish up close.
  5. Introduce the squid and focus on the eye
  6. Allow students to observe the squid up close.
  7. Introduce the dogfish and focus on the:
    1. lateral line system
    2. sense of smell
    3. electroreceptors on the snout
  8. Allow students to observe the dogfish up close.
  9. Show the video "Introduction to the Nervous System"
  10. Introduce the mammalian nervous system and focus on the:
    1. CNS vs PNS
    2. lobes of the cerebrum and their function
    3. the hypothalamus and its function
    4. the parts of the brain stem and their functions
    5. the cerebellum and its function
  11. Introduce the pig and focus on its smell, hearing, vision, and taste
  12. Allow students to observe the pig up close.
  13. Introduce the cat and focus on its small, night vision, whiskers, taste, and hearing.
  14. Allow students to observe the pig up close.
  15. Show the 360 video "How Animals See".
  16. Show the 360 video of neurons firing.
  17. Show the 360 "Brain Surgery Video".

Demonstratives & Media

Suggested Ancillary Support

Notes