Category Archives: Digestion

Updated: Gas Exchange, Transport System, Digestive System

As the new school year starts, we’re launching right into the human body and its systems – always thinking about how structure relates to function and how homeostasis is maintained.

First up, 6.1 Digestion, 6.2 Transport System and 6.4 Gas Exchange. Visit each of the pages for resources, including animations, presentations and Crash Course Biology videos. My class, we’re flipping this content, so complete the Quia quizzes before class.

Digestion (Core) and Flip Thinking

Digestion – something you only want to go in one direction. But learning about digestion doesn’t have to go one way. As we are trying to reduce the burden of homework and to make any time spent working outside class as effective as possible, we’re going to try Flip Thinking.

Essentially, your homework takes place before class and you complete only the objective 1 command terms (the bits you don’t need me for). With that out of the way and a foundation in the language and diagrams of the topic, we can focus on the more complex items together.

Come to class with the objective 1 command terms completed in the Essential Biology for Digestion (Core). I have highlighted them in yellow. This should take no more than one of your study periods. If it takes longer, stop and let me know how far you got, as well as how effectively you were working.

Come to classes prepared with your laptop and don’t forget the resources we have available.

Here goes:

Further resources:

6.1 Digestion (Core) page

Essential Biology 6.1 Digestion (Core)

Key question: How many links can you make from Digestion to the others topics we have already studied in IB Biology?


I cannot take credit for this idea. Check out these resources:

If, however, you find that this helps or hinders your progress, be sure to let me know.

Enzymes (Core and AHL & C2)

Covering the core and AHL/ SL Option C content, here is a rundown of enzymes, from active sites to end-product inhibition. Again, there are lots of animation resources out there, many of which are used in the presentation – click on the shadowed images to go there.

Check out this article on the potential use of an enzyme in second-generation biofuels.

Enzyme Basics:

What is an enzyme? from Northland (the best one – including inhibitors, pathways and feedback inhibition)

How enzymes work from McGraw Hill

Enzyme basics from

A full collection of savable enzyme animations from Husam Medical

And John Giannini’s Enzyme collection is nice and clear.

Enzyme activity and kinetics

Nice virtual lab from

Enzyme kinetics from Wiley Interscience


Protein denaturation from McGraw Hill


Complete tutorial from Wiley Interscience

What is an enzyme? from Northland

Feedback (end product) inhibition from McGraw Hill

And here’s a quick run down on YouTube:

Digestion: Core and Higher Level

Here is the presentation for the Core section:

Class Notes to fill in here (pdf download – A3 size)

Some good links:

Click4Biology Digestion page.

Enzyme activity animations from McGraw Hill, Northland College and

A great animation/tuturial on digestion of different types of foods from

And an introduction to absorption(and villi):

And another one from YouTube.

Higher Level Content for the Further Human Physiology topic:

Class Notes to fill in are here (pdf file)

Some links:

Click4Biology Digestion FHP page

North Harris College animations collection

Gastric secretion animation from McGraw Hill

Digestion of lipids from ZeroBio

Heliobacter pylori and gastric pathology from Johns Hopkins

Absorption of Digested Foods:

Class Notes to fill in here (pdf download)

Villi structure from the University of Lanacaster and 3d4

Colorado State has animations for active transport.

Nutrition from has animations for passive transport, fat uptake, facilitated diffusion, endocytosis.

And, of course, here are JD and Turk to tell us about the diagnostic miracle of egestion:

Absorption of Digested Food Molecules

Download it here:  absorption-of-digested-foods.ppt

Virtual Fetal Pig dissection (digestive system) from Whitman

Zooming in – Intestine to epithelial cells (with comedy Lancashire accent) from UCLan’s Sonic Nursing project

Lots of digestion and absorption animations from

Absorption of monosaccharides (tutorial) from Colorado StateNew-Yorkers in search of poo-phoria (from

JD and Turk telling us how poo is used for diagnosis:

Digestion (Further Human Physiology) Linklist

Download it here: digestionfhp.ppt

Let’s start with the basics:

Simple Digestion animation by

And don’t forget the excellent review materials at Click4Biology.

Fetal pig digestive system virtual dissection from Whitman College

Control of digestive juice secretion:

Straight to the Point McGraw Hill (their page on types of glands is also very helpful)

Gastric acid production by parietal cells (advanced – look at ‘normal’ only) – John Hopkins

Another Gastric acid animation (over-detailed) PPIKnow Pharmacology website

Digestion of lipids:

Good animation from

Control of bile secretion (advanced) from

I’m still looking for animations for the other subtopics. If you find any, let me know!

Digestion: Quarter Pounder with Cheese to quarter-pounder with wheeze.

Good-quality graphics. Teaching idea: give the video to students and ask them to record or narrate their own descriptions to go along with the images. It’s got to be better than the soundtrack provided here, and should fit the subject guide more closely.

Here is a brilliantly simple animation that shows how Flash should be used:

Digestion Animation –  by

Next up, Robert Winston and a grisly stomach image – missing the lower intestines.

Finally, this one is nicely done: focuses on the enzymes of digestion and absorption through the villi.

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