Arteries, veins & capillaries (Edexcel A-level Biology)

This fully-resourced lesson explores how the structure of arteries, veins and capillaries relates to their functions. The engaging and detailed PowerPoint and accompanying resources have been designed to cover point 1.3 of the Pearson Edexcel A-level Biology A (Salters Nuffield) specification.

This lesson has been written to build on any prior knowledge from GCSE or earlier in this topic to enable students to fully understand why a particular type of blood vessel has particular features. Students will be able to make the connection between the narrow lumen and elastic tissue in the walls of arteries and the need to maintain the high pressure of the blood. A quick version of the GUESS WHO game is used to introduce smooth muscle and collagen in the tunica media and externa and again the reason for their presence is explored and explained. Moving forwards, the lesson considers the structure of the veins and students are challenged to explain how the differences to those observed in arteries is due to the lower blood pressure found in these vessels. The final part of the lesson looks at the role of the capillaries in exchange. Links are made to diffusion to ensure that students can explain how the red blood cells pressing against the endothelium results in a short diffusion distance.

It is estimated that it will take about 2 hours of allocated A-level Biology teaching time to cover the detail included in this lesson

Save for later
  • Structure-and-function-of-arteries--veins-and-capillaries.pptx
  • The-structure-of-an-artery-in-relation-to-the-function.docx
  • The-structure-of-a-vein-in-relation-to-the-function.docx

About this resource


Created: Nov 13, 2019

pptx, 2 MB


docx, 169 KB


docx, 13 KB


Report a problem

Tes Paid Licence

How can I re-use this?