Life Cycle - Human Biology (4B)
Lab 

   
OBJECTIVES:
  • Discovering how your pulse and heart rate are related.
  • Comparing the pulse of males and females. 
VOCABULARY:
  • arteries
  • blood pressure
  • pulse
MATERIALS:

Students measure their heart rate and graph the information.

BACKGROUND:

A pulse is created when the ventricles of the heart contract and force blood into the arteries.  Each beat of the heart makes an artery stretch thereby causing a pulse within the artery.  Blood in the arteries has a much higher pressure than the blood in the veins.  Therefore, blood found in the arteries moves much faster than blood found in the veins.  That is why it is so difficult  to stop an artery from bleeding and why so much blood is lost if an artery is cut.  

Blood pressure is a measure of the pressure of the blood on the walls of the arteries. The students should observe the mechanical heart found in the module so they can see a "pulse" in motion.

PROCEDURE:
  1. This lab has the students detecting their own pulse rates and calculating the number of beats per minute.  They will determine their pulse rates while standing still and after running.  Use the model of the heart to go over the different components of the heart (see Pre Lab).
      
  2. The purpose of this lab is to determine if boys and girls have a different pulse rates.  The students will have to determine the average of the class for both girls and boys and then compare this with the average pulse rate.  This lab may take a considerable longer time than most of the other labs, because you will have to tabulate each child's pulse rate.
       
  3. Reinforce the information given in the pre lab. 

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