The Circulatory System in the Body

Contributor: Hannah Brooks. Lesson ID: 12574

Blood doesn't just travel around the veins for fun like a physiological water park; that blood makes pickups and deliveries on its travels. Pick up (and display) the pulse of this system's activities!


Life Science

learning style
Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!


What is all that blood doing as it is moving around inside your body?

The circulatory system moves blood, using the heart as a pump and the vessel system located throughout the body to distribute nutrients and oxygen.

We would not be able to survive without the circulatory system because it interacts with so many other body systems in important ways!

Before continuing, if you missed or need to review the first Related Lesson on the basics of the circulatory system in this Circulatory System series, go to the right-hand sidebar.

body systems

The circulatory system works closely with the lungs to provide oxygen to blood. Lungs are a part of the respiratory system, and use the air we breathe to dissolve oxygen for use in the body. Oxygen is added to the blood in the lungs, then pumped to the heart, where it is distributed to the entire body through the network of blood vessels.

As blood transports oxygen, it helps remove carbon dioxide and waste from cells. These waste products can be released by the excretory system. Kidneys regulate salts and waste products in the body, and excrete them through the bladder.

excretory system

The endocrine system, responsible for managing hormones, uses the circulatory system to provide hormones and other chemical signals to cells throughout the body. These chemicals help regulate processes in every system, like development of body hair during puberty and regulation of adrenaline during stressful situations.

The circulatory system is controlled by the nervous system and the brain, which sends electrical impulses to drive the cardiac cycle of contractions. Heartbeats are caused by a unique system of electrical impulses creating a rhythm. These impulses travel along nerves that conduct the signal from the brain to the heart.

nervous system

Humans could not survive without the heart and the circulatory system, but this important body system relies heavily on additional systems in the body to function. The respiratory system provides oxygen to blood, while the endocrine system uses blood to distribute hormones to cells. Blood helps the excretory system by removing waste and carbon dioxide that can be filtered and removed by the bladder. All of these body systems are interdependent, meaning they need one another to function and sustain life!

  • How are the circulatory and respiratory systems related?
  • How does the circulatory system help the excretory system function?
  • What do you think would happen to other human body systems if the circulatory system stopped functioning?

Discuss this with a parent or teacher before moving on.

In the Got It? section, you will complete a hands-on activity to test the relationship between body systems in your own body!

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