Here is a cool visual in which students can visually see how their blood is being pumped through their heart. You need:
- beaker or wide mouth jar
- large balloon**
- 2 flexible drinking straws
- wooden skewer
- large pan or sink
Once you fill the jar half way with water and cut the neck off the balloon (save this) you can stretch the other half of the balloon (the tighter the better) over the top of the jar. Next make two holes, on the opposite sides of the jar, and place one straw in each hole. On the left straw place the neck of the balloon. Place the whole jar into a pan to catch “pumped” water.
Effectively the students will be making a pump that moved water from the jar to the straw and into the pan when blown into the other straw. The cut end of the balloon acts like a valve and stops the water from going back down the straw, acting like an arteries.
This helps students visually see how one of the four chamber of the heart pumps. Students can take the “valve” off of the straw and notice that the water will come out of the straw because without it there is nothing to regulate the blood flow similar to your heart.