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Measuring Heart Rate with Your Own Stethoscope

Grade Range
4th
Group Size
2 students
Active Time
45 minutes
Total Time
45 minutes
Area of Science
Human Biology & Health
Key Concepts
Heart, Circulatory system
Learning Objectives
  • Understand the function of the heart and blood.
  • Relate heart rate to blood flow and pulse.
  • Measure and interpret how heart rates are affected by exercising.
making heart rate stethoscope

Overview

In this fun, hands-on lesson, students explore their heartbeats and learn about blood circulation. They will make their own stethoscopes, use them to measure their heart rates and investigate how heart rate is affected by exercise.

NGSS Alignment

This lesson helps students prepare for these Next Generation Science Standards Performance Expectations:
  • 4-LS1-1. Construct an argument that plants and animals have internal and external structures that function to support survival, growth, behavior, and reproduction.
This lesson focuses on these aspects of NGSS Three Dimensional Learning:

Science & Engineering Practices Disciplinary Core Ideas Crosscutting Concepts
Engaging in Argument from Evidence. Construct and/or support an argument with evidence, data, and/or a model.

Analyzing and Interpreting Data. Represent data in tables and/or various graphical displays to reveal patterns that indicate relationships.
LS1.A: Structure and Function. Plants and animals have both internal and external structures that serve various functions in growth, survival, behavior, and reproduction.
Cause and Effect. Cause and effect relationships are routinely identified, tested, and used to explain change.

Systems and System Models. A system is a group of related parts that make up a whole and can carry out functions its individual parts cannot.

Credits

Sabine De Brabandere, PhD, Science Buddies

Materials


Few materials are needed to make a stethoscope

For each group of two students:

  • Plastic funnel
  • A cardboard tube from a paper towel roll
  • A strip of duct tape or other strong tape
  • Scissors
  • Stopwatch or clock that counts seconds

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Grade Range
4th
Group Size
2 students
Active Time
45 minutes
Total Time
45 minutes
Area of Science
Human Biology & Health
Key Concepts
Heart, Circulatory system
Learning Objectives
  • Understand the function of the heart and blood.
  • Relate heart rate to blood flow and pulse.
  • Measure and interpret how heart rates are affected by exercising.

Class Materials
Related Lessons