PUBLISHED : Thursday, 01 March, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 01 March, 2007, 12:00am


Use these words to complete the sentences: vibrations, cochlea, connecting, vibrate, waves

1. The outer ear collects sound _____________________ which travel down the auditory canal and _____________________ the eardrum.

2. The middle ear has three bones and vibrations move these three bones (called the hammer, anvil and stirrup). They form a chain _____________ the inner face of the eardrum to a membrane called the oval window (covers opening to the inner ear).

3. The inner ear has two parts: the cochlea and the semicircular canals.

4. The ___________________ is a spiral passage that looks like a snail shell. It is filled with fluid, and the inner surface is lined with nerve endings. They are highly sensitive to _________________ of fluid.

A common saying

When people say 'It's like music to my ears', it means that they like what they have heard and it's good news


Hearing is a wondrous process

When sound waves reach the ear, they pass through outer ear and down the auditory canal to the eardrum.

The sound wave causes the eardrum to vibrate.

The vibrating eardrum causes the hammer, anvil and stirrup to vibrate in turn.

The stirrup is attached to the oval window of the cochlea.

The movement of the stirrup is transferred to the fluid of the cochlea.

The vibrations of the fluid stimulate the nerve endings that line the cochlea.

The nerve endings are part of the auditory nerve, which send the impulses to the brain.

And you hear sound!

What are the three bones in the middle ear? _____________


Cross Match

1. cochlea (kok-lee-uh)

2. auditory (aw-di-tawr-ee)

3. vibrate (vihy-breyt)

4. impulses

a. related to the sense of hearing, or to the organs of hearing

b. a spiral-shaped cavity forming a division of the internal ear in humans and in most other mammals

c. transmissions of signals along nerve fibres that produce a response in a tissue, such as a muscle or another nerve

d. to move rhythmically and steadily to and fro


Ears are an important part of all cultures, and symbolic references to ears can make a powerful statement.

What does 'to turn a deaf ear' mean?

Ear quotations

What do these quotes mean to you?

What a blessing it would be if we could open and shut our ears as easily as we open and shut our eyes - George Christoph Lichtenberg (1742 - 1799)


Be a good listener. Your ears will never get you in trouble - Frank Tyger


Men trust their ears less than their eyes - Herodotus (484 BC - 430 BC)



A. 1. waves, vibrate 2. connecting 4. cochlea, vibrations

B. hammer, anvil and stirrup

C. 1. b, 2. a, 3. d, 4. c

D. To turn a deaf ear means to ignore opinions or voices, to pretend that something does not exist.