P3 and P4 Topic

Functions of the Digestive System

This science revision note aims to help your child

– Choose the relevant functions of the digestive system.

– understand what is a fair test.

 

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Question

The diagram below shows the human digestive system. Substance P found in part X of the digestive system helps in the digestion process.

a) Other than breaking down some food into simpler substances, state another function of substance P.

STEP 1: Recall

Identify the keywords in the questions:

  • Human digestive system
  • Another function

STEP 2: What Science topics are tested?

  1. Recognise the different parts of the digestive system and their functions.

Let us focus on the relevant parts of the digestive system to answer the question.

  • Mouth: Produces saliva that breaks down some food into simpler substances. Saliva also softens the food, making it easier to swallow.
  • Stomach: A muscular bag that contracts and relaxes, churning the food and mixing it with the digestive juices. Some digestion takes place here.
  • Small intestine: Produces digestive juices to digest the food into simpler substances. Digestion is completed here, and the digested food is absorbed into the bloodstream.

Watch this video:

Step 3: Piecing your answer together

(a) Other than breaking down some food into simpler substances, state another function of substance P.

Answer:

Substance P is the saliva. The saliva softens the food and makes it easy to swallow.

 

 

(b) Explain what happens to the digested food at part Y of the human digestive system.

STEP 1: Recall

Identify the keywords in the questions:

  • Part Y
  • Digested food

 

STEP 2: What Science topics are tested?

Refer to part (a)

 

Step 3: Piecing your answer together

(b) Explain what happens to the digested food at part Y of the human digestive system.

Answer:

Part Y is the small intestine. The digested food would be absorbed into the bloodstream.

 

Wrong answer: The food is digested in the small intestine.

Teachers’ comments: The question has stated the “digested food”. We have to begin our explanation of what happens to the digested food. You have to choose the relevant function of the small intestine.

 

 

(c) Hannah conducted an experiment as shown below. She wanted to find out if the amount of digestive juices affects the time taken for food to be digested.

 

Based on the table above, which two set-ups should she use to conduct a fair test?

 

STEP 1: Recall

Identify the keywords in the questions:

  • Fair test
  • Aim of experiment

What makes a fair test?

A fair test is one with only one changed variable.

 

STEP 2: What Science topics are tested?

Understand what makes a fair test:

    • A fair test can only have one changed variable.
    • What is a changed variable? A variable that is changed by the person conducting the experiment. This can be found in the aim.

The aim of the experiment as stated in the questions is to find out if the amount of digested juices affects the time taken for food to be digested. Based on the aim, the only changed variable should be the amount of digested food. The other variables should remain the same.

 

Refer to the video:

Step 3: Piecing your answer together

(c) Based on the table above, which two set-ups should she use to conduct a fair test?

Answer:

Set-ups X and Z

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