How the Ear Works: Lesson for Kids - Parts & Facts

Instructor: Ryan Newton
Ears help us collect and process sounds. In this lesson, you will learn about the three sections of the ear, different parts of the ear, and how these parts help you to hear all of the sounds around you.

Sounds, Sounds, All Around

Did you hear that? Listen closely. Can you hear cars driving by, dogs barking, birds singing, or people laughing? There is so much sound all around you. Sometimes we don't even pay attention to all that we hear. But our ears do! Our ears help us to hear all of the sounds around us every single day!

Sections of the Ear

Your ears are the parts of your body that are in charge of collecting sounds and sending them to your brain so that you know what you are hearing. Your ears have three different sections: outer ear, middle ear, and inner ear. Each section has different parts that perform different jobs, and they work together to help you hear sounds.

The Outer Ear Collects Sound

The outer ear is also called the pinna. It is the part of the ear that you can scratch, pierce, flick, and rub. The outer ear's job is to collect sound waves that are traveling through the air. Think of it like a baseball mitt that catches a ball. After your outer ear catches the sound, the sound travels through the ear canal on its way to the middle ear. The canal is like a tunnel. This canal has earwax in it, and while you might think earwax is gross, it actually helps fight infections.

The Middle Ear Has Good Vibes

Sound waves travel through the ear canal into the middle ear, where they reach the eardrum. The eardrum is a thin piece of skin that vibrates when sound hits it. It's like a drum you play in band class! When the eardrum vibrates, it passes the vibrations along to three tiny bones. I bet you didn't know that the tiniest bones in your body are in your ear! That's right, these tiny bones are called ossicles, and they help sound continue on its journey to the inner ear.

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