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Lesson 2-Explore: Open wide! What's Inside?

(continued)

PROCEDURE

Activity 1: Mouth Trek

The purpose of this activity is to give students the opportunity to explore and describe the mouth as an environment and to describe the structures within the mouth.

1. Briefly review what students learned about the mouth in Lesson 1.

Review both the structures and the functions of the mouth that you listed on the chart paper.

2. Begin the activity by asking the students, "What does the inside of your mouth feel like?" and "How could you find out?" Tell students that today they will use their fingers to "take a trek" inside their own mouths and find out more about what is there. Provide tissues or paper towels for students to dry off their fingers, if necessary.

Make sure that students wash their hands with soap and water before they begin their "mouth trek."

boy feeling the inside of his mouth

National Science Education Standards iconContent Standard A:
Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry.

3. Instruct students to use an index finger to feel the inside of their mouths. Encourage them to describe what they feel. Use the board or flip chart paper to list their describing words. Remind students that this is what scientists do when they are exploring something new: they describe what they encounter. (Note: Save this chart for use in Lesson 4.)

What the inside of my mouth feels like: warm, wet, soft (cheeks, lips, roof of mouth - soft palate, tongue), hard (teeth, jaw, roof of mouth - hard palate), bumpy (teeth, tongue), slippery (gums, cheeks, tongue, floor of mouth), smooth (gums, lips, floor of mouth), rough (tongue).

4. Review the list by asking students to connect specific structures with their descriptive words. To remind the students of the structures of the mouth, display the chart The Parts of My Mouth from Lesson 1.

assessment iconAssessment:
To find out how well individual students understand this concept, you might provide them with two separate lists of the words, one from each chart—What the Inside of My Mouth Feels Like and The Parts of My Mouth. Ask students to draw lines connecting the characteristics (for example, hard) with the structures (for example, teeth, jaw, roof of the mouth).

You also can display a transparency of Master 2.1, The Parts of the Mouth, if you think it will help your students focus on specific structures. Prompt studies by asking questions such as these:

5. Focus the students on the general oral environment—warm and wet—by asking questions similar to these:

6. Ask students if they think there are structures in their mouths that they cannot see or feel. Remind students of the x-rays that some of them might have had at the dentist's office. Hold up Master 2.2, Mouth X-Ray, and point out the structures beneath the gums, such as the permanent teeth and bone.

Point out that one lower primary incisor is missing. The permanent teeth are developing underneath the primary teeth.

Scientists make observations using their senses, such as sight and touch. Technology is a useful tool to reveal what scientists' senses cannot. Dentists use x-rays such as the one on Master 2.2 to determine the presence of permanent teeth and the placement of those teeth with respect to primary teeth.

Activity 2: Cut, Tear, and Grind

The purpose of this activity is to focus students on the importance of teeth as well as the types of teeth and their functions.

1. Ask students to wash their hands. Then, remind them of the mouth trek they took during the previous activity. Direct them to take another mouth trek. This time, focus students on the shapes of their teeth by asking questions similar to these:

National Science Education Standards iconContent Standard A:
Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry.

As students compare and contrast their teeth, ask them why they think their teeth are different sizes and shapes.

2. Remind students what their teeth did when they ate the cracker in Lesson 1. (Optional: Distribute another cracker to students and ask them to pay attention to how their teeth help them eat the cracker.)

Focus students on the actions of first biting and then grinding or crushing the cracker. Ask them to describe which teeth do which action. Ask them again why they think their teeth are shaped differently. Encourage them to relate their answer to the job each tooth does in helping them eat food.

During this activity, focus mainly on the teeth; however, if students bring it up, review the role of saliva in making food soft and easy to swallow.

3. Tell students that incisors bite or cut into food. Help students find the incisors in their mouths.

Help them pay attention to where the incisors are located in their mouths. Talk about why their incisors might be at the front of the mouth rather than at the back.

Tell students that canine teeth tear food. Help students locate their canine teeth.

Help them pay attention to where the canines are located in their mouths. Talk about why their canine teeth might be toward the middle of the mouth rather than at the front or back.

National Science Education Standards iconContent Standard C:
The characteristics of organisms.

Tell students that molars crush and grind food. Ask students to find their molars.

Help them pay attention to where the molars are located in their mouths. Talk about why their molars might be in the back of the mouth rather than at the front.

4. Ask students to estimate how many teeth they have in their mouths.

Remind students that an estimate is an approximate calculation based on information they already have. In this activity, students have identified three kinds of teeth in their mouths. They can use their tongue to roughly count how many molars they have, how many canines they have, and how many incisors they have. Or, they can try to count how many teeth they have on the top and estimate that the total number of teeth in their mouth is double that number. Encourage students to estimate carefully, not just guess.

5. Ask for a student volunteer to come to the front of the room for an exact tooth count. Make sure your hands are clean and use a clean Popsicle stick to point to each tooth as you count it. Record on the board the number of teeth the student volunteer has. Based on the count of the volunteer's teeth, ask students to adjust their estimate from Step 4 if necessary.

Note any missing or extra teeth that the student volunteer has. Help students see that they can estimate the number of teeth they have based on the volunteer's tooth count and how their teeth match the volunteer's teeth. For example, if the volunteer is missing a front tooth and the student is not, the student would have one more tooth and would increase his or her tooth count by one.

6. Tell students that you would like them to confirm their tooth count at home, with help from their parents or guardians. Follow the steps for the take-home activity.

7. Allow time for students to complete the activity on the Web site about the structures in the mouth.

Web activity iconOpen the Web site in your browser. From the main page, click on Web Portion of Student Activities and choose either English, Español, or one of the accessible versions of the activities. The Student Activities window will open and the Exee Movie will play automatically. You can skip the animation by clicking the skip button. From the main menu in the Student Activities window, select Open Wide! What's Inside? Then click on Inside Your Mouth! from the next menu.

Take-home Activity: Tooth Record

Exee with a magnifying glassThis is the first of three take-home activities. The take-home activities are designed to engage children and their parents or guardians in oral health activities at home. One side of the page explains the procedure, and the other side contains important background information for the parent.

If you know of a situation in which a student will not be able to complete a take-home activity, offer to help that student complete the activity at school.

1. Introduce the activity to students and review the directions. Tell students to fill out the tooth record and bring it back to the next class.

2. Point out the Certificate of Completion and inform students you would like their parent or guardian to send the completed form back to the school. The parent and child should keep the activity pages at home.

3. Send 1 copy of Master 2.3, Take-home Activity 1: My Tooth Record, home with each student and wait for results.

Activity 3: Graphing and Record Keeping

The purpose of this activity is to reinforce graphing and record-keeping skills.

1. Give students time to view the segment on the Web site that describes the pattern of tooth loss and the development of permanent teeth. Help students recognize that primary teeth are important place holders for permanent teeth.

Web activity iconOpen the Web site in your browser. From the main page, click on Web Portion of Student Activities and choose either English, Español, or one of the accessible versions of the activities. The Student Activities window will open and the Exee Movie will play automatically. You can skip the animation by clicking the skip button. From the main menu in the Student Activities window, select Open Wide! What's Inside? Then click on How Teeth Grow from the next menu.

2. Tell students that the class is going to make a graph to represent the different tooth counts the students made when they did their take-home activity. Ask students to tell you why it is possible that not all students have the same number of teeth.

Loss of primary teeth is an exciting stage of development for primary students. Students will realize that they might have different numbers of teeth because they each might have lost a different number of primary teeth or have had a different number of permanent teeth erupt.

3. To begin, make the following data table on the board. If necessary, adjust the range of tooth counts to include all counts made by your students.

Tooth Counts
16 Teeth 17 Teeth 18 Teeth 19 Teeth 20 Teeth 21 Teeth 22 Teeth 23 Teeth 24 Teeth
                 
National Science Education Standards iconContent Standard A:
Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry.

4. Ask students to go up to the board and put a mark in the box below the number of teeth they counted in their mouth.

5. With the students' help, tally the number of students who put marks in each of the boxes. Record the number in the box with the marks.

6. On a large sheet of chart paper, make a bar graph representing the information from the data table. Title the graph How Many Teeth Do We Have?

sample bar graph

7. Help students interpret the graph by asking questions such as these:

assessment iconAssessment:
You can assess your students' ability to create and interpret bar graphs using one of these additional graphing exercises.

8. (Optional) Create additional class bar graphs that illustrate the number of students who have


young boy
Photo: Corel

9. (Optional) Keep a class chart or graph as students lose their primary teeth.

Extension Activity 1: Funny ABCs

The purpose of this activity is to explore and recognize the different mouth structures that help us speak.

1. Remind students that talking is one way they use their mouths. Introduce the idea that different parts of the mouth work together by trying the following activities:

Ask students to hold the end of their tongues between their fingers and to say the alphabet while they hold their tongue. Provide tissues or paper towels to dry off their fingers, if necessary.

girl holding the end of her tongueMake sure students wash their hands with soap and water before they touch anything inside their mouth.

Ask students to cover their teeth with their lips and say the alphabet.

2. Help students think about the structures in the mouth—in this case, the teeth and tongue—that help them make different sounds when they talk by asking questions such as these:

3. Explain to students that their lips, teeth, and tongue work together to make sounds when they talk. Tell them they will observe how the parts of their mouths help them talk by doing these things with a partner:

Extension Activity 2: Matching Game: The Parts of My Mouth

The purpose of this activity is to help students review the names of the structures in the oral cavity.

boy sticking out his tongue, girl smiling, molar and saliva

This activity makes an excellent center activity. Students can play the game in teams of two, three, or four, using either the Web site or sets of cards copied from Master 2.4, The Parts of My Mouth Game Cards. Make sure that students keep each set of the 20 game cards separate.

 

1. Review the structures in the mouth that students explored previously. Hold up pictures from Master 2.4, The Parts of My Mouth Game Cards, or have someone model the structure as you review the vocabulary. Students have learned the following structures:

2. Explain to students that they are about to play a matching game that is similar to the game Memory or Concentration. (Some students may have played a version of this game before.) The object of the game is to match as many pairs of cards as they can. Review the rules of the game, as follows:

Web activity iconWeb version: Open the Web site in your browser. From the main page, click on Web Portion of Student Activities and choose either English, Español, or one of the accessible versions of the activities. The Student Activities window will open and the Exee Movie will play automatically. You can skip the animation by clicking the skip button. From the main menu in the Student Activities window, select Open Wide! What's Inside? Then click on Matching Game from the next menu.

The pictures in the Matching Game will be in different positions for each play of the game.

assessment iconAssessment:
At the end of each lesson, there will be a wrap-up exercise during which students tell Exee what they have learned. You can collect students' journals after each lesson to assess their progress or wait until the end of the curriculum supplement to do a final assessment.

Card game version: Mix up the game cards and then lay each of the 20 cards face down in a separate space. One student turns over two cards in an attempt to find a match. (Encourage the student to name the part of the mouth pictured on each card as she or he turns it over.) If the two cards do not match, the student turns the cards face down in the same spot. If the cards match, then the student removes the matching cards and makes a pile of "matches." That student gets to take another turn until he or she does not make a match. The students take turns turning over two cards at a time to match the objects shown on the cards. The game continues until all cards have been matched and collected. The student with the most matches wins the game.

Exee writingWrap-up

Instruct students to use their Mouth Journals to write or draw about what they learned in this lesson. Help them decide what to include by suggesting that they answer the question, What would you tell Exee about the mouth now?



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