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Define Homeostasis

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Did you know that even when you’re fast asleep your body is still using energy? 

 

 Image of a boy sleeping

 

 

Even when you're fast asleep, dreaming of not having to wake up early for school, the body uses so much energy! That's because it has to keep a constant internal environment.

This process of keeping things the same is called homeostasis.  

A series of automatic control systems ensures that the body maintains a constant temperature, steady levels of water and balanced blood sugar levels.

Homeostasis allows the body’s cells to work at their optimum -  meaning at their best conditions.

The conditions of the environment are always changing. Our body has to respond to these changes, but at the same time ensure that certain internal conditions don't vary too much, otherwise, damage could be caused.

 

Image of types of homeostasis

 

 

One example is temperature. Environmental temperature is constantly changing - part of the day can be very hot, the next very cold. Even slight changes in body temperature can have a major effect on health. If body temperature falls too low, reactions become too slow for cells to survive; too high, and the body’s enzymes are at risk of denaturing. Our organs, such as the heart, liver and kidneys, are maintained at 37°C. This is the core body temperature and our body has to maintain these temperatures. This is done by negative feedback. 

Negative feedback is how the body maintains normal levels. If the level of something rises, control systems will come into place to reduce levels again, and if the level of something falls, control systems will raise it again.

Negative feedback can be summarised in the flow diagram below: 

 

Image of negative feedback loop

 

In the following activity, you will define homeostasis. 

Steve and John are trying to define homeostasis for a question in their science homework.

 

What is homeostasis?

Homeostasis is the changes that occur internally

Homeostasis is the maintenance of a constant internal environment

Homeostasis is maintaining external conditions

Why is homeostasis important for the human body?  

Homeostasis is the changes that occur internally

Homeostasis is the maintenance of a constant internal environment

Homeostasis is maintaining external conditions

Homeostasis is used by the body for many different processes.

 

Which of these are examples of processes controlled by homeostasis?

Heart rate

Temperature

Nerve impulse transmission

Blood glucose concentration

There are two main systems involved in homeostasis.

 

What are the names of these two systems?

Circulatory system

Nervous system

Endocrine system

Immune system

The image below shows the negative feedback cycle in homeostasis.

 

What is X?

 

Image of negative feedback fill in

Body doesn't respond to change

Body activates mechanisms to correct change

Body responds to one change at a time

An example of negative feedback is regulating body temperature.


Describe how body temperature is regulated.

Body doesn't respond to change

Body activates mechanisms to correct change

Body responds to one change at a time

 

The graph below shows the body regulating its temperature over time. 

 

What is the body's optimum temperature?

 

Image of graph showing regulation of body temperature

37.1°C

37°C

36.6°C

Eating too many chocolate bars can leave too much sugar in our blood.

 

What is the name for the process that regulates a constant level of sugar in the blood?

 

Image of chocolate

 

Negative feedback

Positive feedback

Neutral feedback

The graph below shows the body regulating its temperature over time.

 

 Describe how the graph is showing negative feedback.

 

Image of graph showing regulation of body temperature

The temperature of the body has to remain below 37°C

The temperature of the body is low at 36.6°C and continues to rise to 37°C

The body tries to maintain a temperature of 37°C which is the body's optimum temperature

The body doesn't need a specific temperature to function

The sentences below describe homeostasis.

 

Place these sentences in order.

  • Question 1

Steve and John are trying to define homeostasis for a question in their science homework.

 

What is homeostasis?

CORRECT ANSWER
Homeostasis is the maintenance of a constant internal environment
EDDIE SAYS
Did you know the definition or did you make a lucky guess?! Homeostasis is all to do with internal conditions and keeping them constant. Beware of any answers that mention external conditions!
  • Question 2

Why is homeostasis important for the human body?  

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Did you get all the blanks filled in correctly? Were you caught out by that important word in the second blank - optimum? The environment is always changing, so our body needs to work hard to keep conditions the same and at their best. When conditions are at their best for a particular cell in the body, it means that they are optimum conditions for that cell or enzyme to be working.
  • Question 3

Homeostasis is used by the body for many different processes.

 

Which of these are examples of processes controlled by homeostasis?

CORRECT ANSWER
Temperature
Blood glucose concentration
EDDIE SAYS
Our body is a very complicated machine, and many processes are happening without us even being aware of them. Temperature regulation and the concentration of glucose in the blood are the most common examples of homeostasis.
  • Question 4

There are two main systems involved in homeostasis.

 

What are the names of these two systems?

CORRECT ANSWER
Nervous system
Endocrine system
EDDIE SAYS
This was a tricky question, so well done if you got this one correct. The nervous system is important for homeostasis - receptors on neurones will pick up stimuli and pass the message to the central nervous system, which will cause effectors to produce a response to return conditions to their optimum state. The endocrine system is also vital - it is the system that controls the different hormones in your body, like insulin for example.
  • Question 5

The image below shows the negative feedback cycle in homeostasis.

 

What is X?

 

Image of negative feedback fill in

CORRECT ANSWER
Body activates mechanisms to correct change
EDDIE SAYS
Negative feedback is used to maintain a constant internal environment. When a change is detected that upsets the body's natural balance, a response is made that activates mechanisms to correct this and restore things to their optimum level.
  • Question 6

An example of negative feedback is regulating body temperature.


Describe how body temperature is regulated.

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
You can imagine negative feedback as wrapping you up with lots of warm layers on a cold winter's day and then feeling too hot and taking the layers off! All with the aim of keeping us at a comfortable temperature. The important thing to remember is the optimum temperature of the human body. It is 37°C !
  • Question 7

 

The graph below shows the body regulating its temperature over time. 

 

What is the body's optimum temperature?

 

Image of graph showing regulation of body temperature

CORRECT ANSWER
37°C
EDDIE SAYS
Did you get a little confused by the graph? The lowest temperature shown on the graph is 36.6 and the temperature slowly rises until it reaches a temperature of 37.1 before falling to 37 degrees. The temperature begins to fall once it has reached 37.1 because this is too hot for the body. Once it reaches 37 degrees, it stops falling. This is because 37°C is the optimum temperature for the body's processes and reactions.
  • Question 8

Eating too many chocolate bars can leave too much sugar in our blood.

 

What is the name for the process that regulates a constant level of sugar in the blood?

 

Image of chocolate

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Negative feedback
EDDIE SAYS
Negative feedback is the control system in our body that raises or decreases levels of things like blood sugar levels, to return them to normal. It's a continuous process.
  • Question 9

The graph below shows the body regulating its temperature over time.

 

 Describe how the graph is showing negative feedback.

 

Image of graph showing regulation of body temperature

CORRECT ANSWER
The temperature of the body is low at 36.6°C and continues to rise to 37°C
The body tries to maintain a temperature of 37°C which is the body's optimum temperature
EDDIE SAYS
37°C is the optimum temperature for the body's processes and reactions - negative feedback ensures this temperature is maintained.
  • Question 10

The sentences below describe homeostasis.

 

Place these sentences in order.

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
How did you do? If you found this hard, why not have a few tries at this activity to consolidate your knowledge of homeostasis and negative feedback. You've completed another activity - you're flying through these!
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