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Types of Joints: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Lindsy Frazer

Dr. Frazer has taught several college level Science courses and has a master's degree in Human Biology and a PhD in Library and Information Science.

Did you know you have joints in your mouth? In this lesson, you will learn what joints are, learn how they help the body move and see examples of the different types. So, let's get moving!

What are Joints?

Turn your head. Now bend your knee. When we move the parts of our bodies like this, we usually give all the credit to our muscles. Muscles do help you to move, but raising your hand or flicking your wrist would not be possible without your joints. In fact, without joints our skeletons would not be able to move at all.

Joints are the places in your body where two bones meet. They give our skeleton flexibility.

Types of Joints

Think about how your shoulder moves. You can make an entire circle with your arm. Other parts of our bodies do not move as much. Joints are categorized by how much they can move. Some joints do not move at all, while others, like our shoulder, have a wide range of motion.

Fibrous Joints

Did you know you have joints in your mouth? Each tooth is attached to our jaw by a fibrous joint. Fibrous joints are sometimes called immovable joints because they do not move. At a fibrous joint, two bones are held together tightly by fibrous, or string-like, tissues.

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These joints are found in places in our body where we do not want our bones to move. Think about your teeth again. After we lose our baby teeth, we sure don't want our permanent teeth to move!

Cartilaginous Joints

When we stretch our back our backbone, or spine, moves just a little. This little bit of movement gives our body some flexibility, but still lets our spine protect all of the delicate nerves that run through it.

The bones in our spine are connected by cartilaginous joints, a type of joint that only allows a little movement. At cartilaginous joints, bones are connect by cartilage, a semi-flexible tissue.

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Synovial Joints

If you spill water on the floor what happens? It becomes very slippery because the water makes it easy for your foot to glide across the floor. Synovial joints have a slippery fluid in them that help your bones glide past each other (just like your foot when you step in water) so that they can move freely.

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While there are several types of synovial joints, they all have one thing in common - they allow a wide range of motion. Let's look at some of them:

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