Menu
K–12 Health Education That Works!

Lessons

Read tips for using the PowerPoints and other teacher resources

1

Lesson 1: Being Healthy in Many Ways

In this lesson, students examine what it means to be healthy, with a focus on mental/emotional health. They discuss the qualities of an emotionally healthy person and why emotional health is important. After discussing ways young people learn how to do things, the teacher introduces the idea of role models and shares a story about an emotionally healthy role model. Then students consider the people in their lives who exemplify positive emotional health and examine the traits of their role models that they would like to emulate.

2

Lesson 2: Expressing Feelings in Healthy Ways

This lesson helps students think about healthy ways to express different kinds of feelings, including those that may be troublesome or uncomfortable to experience. Students read some descriptions of different emotional expressions and guess what feeling is being represented. They discuss how feelings influence behavior and why it is important to be aware of their own feelings as well as sensitive to the feelings of others. They brainstorm ways to express feelings in healthy ways, including feelings of anger or frustration, and list trusted adults they can talk to when they are experiencing strong or troublesome emotions.

3

Lesson 3: Getting Along with Family

In this lesson, students consider the ways their families support them and how they can contribute, in turn, to their families. They explore how families help each other and draw pictures of their families. They read some stories about third graders and their families and the teacher guides a discussion to help them think about the benefits of healthy family relationships, pro-social behaviors that contribute to happy, healthy families and what it means to be a responsible family member. They take home a family sheet to help them talk about what they value about their families and how family members can help each other.

4

Lesson 4: Getting Along with Friends

In this lesson, students consider what it means to be a friend and the ways friends can support each other and help each other be healthy. They discuss the qualities that make a good friend, the benefits of friendship and how friends show each other they care. They read about expressing care and concern, respecting boundaries and being a good listener, then practice these friendship communication skills through some simple roleplays.

5

Lesson 5: Valuing Self and Others

In this lesson, students learn how valuing oneself and others contributes to good emotional health. Students consider the benefits of living in a world where people are different and unique. They define the concept of respect and consider how liking and respecting yourself makes it easier to get along with and respect others. Then they work in small groups to identify things they value about themselves and their classmates using a series of questions. They take home a family sheet to help them talk with their parents or guardians about respecting differences.

6

Lesson 6: Avoiding Germs to Stay Healthy

This lesson helps students practice behaviors that will help prevent infectious diseases such as colds and flu. Students share symptoms they have experienced when sick, then read about how germs can be passed from person to person. They brainstorm things they can do to avoid infectious illness, and practice healthy actions they can take to prevent the spread of germs, including handwashing and covering sneezes and coughs. They also discuss the importance of asking for help and telling an adult then they don’t feel well.

7

Lesson 7: Helping Everyone Avoid Germs

This lesson introduces the concept of advocating to help others stay healthy. Students review what they know about how infectious illnesses spread and talk about why it’s important to avoid germs and keep from passing germs to others. They are introduced to some basic steps for advocacy. Then they work in pairs to choose one of the ways to prevent infectious disease and create a poster to tell other kids how to practice this healthy behavior to help avoid germs.

8

Lesson 8: Using Medicines in Safe Ways

Students identify symptoms or signals the body sends when a person is sick. They define medicine and learn the difference between prescription and over-the-counter medicines. They complete a chart as they discuss how to use medicines in ways that help, and ways to use medicines that can hurt or be dangerous because the medicine is being used in wrong or unsafe ways. They discuss the benefits medicines offer when used correctly and identify risks of using medicines improperly. They complete an activity sheet to review what they have learned and take home a family sheet to help them discuss family rules for using medicines safely.

9

Lesson 9: Being Safety Smart

This lesson helps students consider the idea of being safe. Students complete an activity sheet to define what being safe means to them, then consider a series of questions around safety. They discuss how kids may often take risks because they believe that nothing bad will happen to them, and learn about the importance of thinking about safety ahead of time. They read about some of the ways kids can be hurt and review basic safety rules that can help keep them safe in a variety of everyday situations.

10

Lesson 10: Teaching Others to Be Safety Smart

This lesson introduces the idea of being a safety ambassador to help others be safe. Students review some basic steps for advocacy. Then they work in teams to research an area of safety, using a fact sheet, and create presentations on safety rules for their assigned topics, including pedestrian and passenger safety; bicycle/skating safety; and being safe around water, fire and guns.

11

Lesson 11: Safety-Smart Presentations

In this lesson, student teams present their safety campaigns to the class. They review the steps to being a safety ambassador: choosing to be safe, thinking ahead and helping others. During the presentations, students complete an activity sheet to personalize the learning by listing the safety rule for each topic that is most important for them to follow. They receive certificates to celebrate their role of helping others be safe.

12

Lesson 12: Setting My Goal to Be Safety Smart

In this lesson, students set a goal to be safety smart. They complete a self-assessment of their safety behaviors to identify areas in which they can improve. They learn three questions to help them set a goal, then complete an activity sheet to set a specific goal around one of the safety smart areas they have studied, identify benefits of meeting this safety goal and monitor their progress toward the goal.

13

Lesson 13: Assessing Situations and Making Safe Choices

This lesson helps students assess situations for safety and make safe choices. After discussing what it means to feel safe and comfortable, students learn four questions they can ask themselves to check out situations, people and places. They identify some safe places and situations and contrast these to situations that can make them feel uncomfortable or unsafe. They consider steps they can take to feel safe again, including asking for help from adults. The teacher models how to use the questions to assess a situation and make a decision about what to do. Then students work in small groups to practice using the questions they’ve learned to assess some sample situations and make safe decisions. They take home a family sheet to help them discuss how to make safe choices with their parents or guardians.

14

Lesson 14: Bullying: Myths and Facts

In this lesson, students examine myths and facts about bullying. They explore the kinds of actions, words and behaviors that constitute bullying and summarize key concepts. They read about myths people may believe about bullying and discuss why these myths are false. They consider why bullying is harmful not just to the person being bullied. The teacher reviews school policies on consequences of bullying and how to report it, then helps students consider the difference between tattling and reporting. Students complete an activity sheet to review facts about bullying and take home a family sheet to help them discuss bullying at school with their parents or guardians.

15

Lesson 15: Preventing and Reporting Bullying

This lesson reinforces the importance of preventing and reporting bullying. Students learn a simple process for asking an adult for help with bullying and practice in pairs. Then they design signs for a Safety Ambassadors’ campaign to help others at school understand that bullying is wrong and the importance of reporting it.

16

Lesson 16: Dealing with Inappropriate Touch

In this lesson, students learn what to do if they are ever touched inappropriately. After defining the word problem, they identify caring adults they could go to for help with problems. They learn that there are different kinds of touch and contrast safe touches with two types of touch that can be problems: unsafe and secret touches (sexual abuse). The teacher emphasizes that children are never at fault if they receive unsafe or secret touches. Students learn and practice how to respond to secret touches. Then they complete an activity sheet that helps them review what to do if they experience an unsafe or secret touch.

17

Lesson 17: My Healthy Food Choices

This lesson teaches guidelines for making healthy food choices. After solving a riddle, students explore the importance of eating, identify body signals of hunger and fullness, and list benefits of healthy eating. They learn “healthy foods rules” that will help them choose foods that are fresh, crunchy and chewy and avoid foods with a lot of sugar, salt or fat. They identify foods they like that fit these criteria, then write or illustrate healthy food choices for a day’s worth of meals based on the rules they have learned.

18

Lesson 18: Water and Other Healthy Drink Choices

This lesson reviews the importance of drinking water for health. Students read about and discuss the reasons the body needs water to be healthy. They are presented with pictures of different beverages and analyze which are healthy choices that meet the healthy foods rule of not being too sugary sweet. They complete an activity sheet by reading a story about a third grader, explaining when and why it would be important for her to drink water during the day, and assessing their own water drinking habits.

19

Lesson 19: Eat Breakfast Every Day

This lesson teaches the importance of eating a healthy breakfast. Students read a story that illustrates the effect of eating breakfast on a third grader’s feelings and school performance. They compare and contrast how they feel when they eat breakfast versus when they don’t. They review and apply the healthy foods rules to identify examples of healthy breakfast food choices, and discuss why the body needs breakfast. The teacher posts a classroom banner to remind students to eat a healthy breakfast each day.

20

Lesson 20: Eat 5 a Day

This lesson reviews the concept of eating 5 fruits and vegetables a day for good health. Students answer some riddles to identify fruits and vegetables as healthy food choices and guess the names of some common fruits and vegetables. They review the meaning of 5 a day and discuss why eating fruits and vegetables is a healthy choice. They complete an activity sheet to identify their favorite fruits and vegetables and take home a family sheet to discuss eating 5 a day with their parents or guardians.

21

Lesson 21: Food Choices and Influences

In this lesson, students analyze influences on their food choices. They illustrate their favorite meal and then consider the reasons they like to eat these foods, including family and peer influences, advertising and local availability. They describe their favorite meal to a partner and compare their reasons for eating the foods they chose.

22

Lesson 22: My Goal to Eat Healthy

In this lesson, students set a goal to choose healthy foods and drinks throughout the day. They learn some simple steps for setting a goal, and review the healthy foods rules to remind them how to make healthy food and beverage choices. Students complete a goal-setting activity sheet, then keep a food diary for the week and review their choices each day. They analyze their results to identify which behaviors to continue and which to change to eat healthier.

23

Lesson 23: Move More, Sit Less

This lesson helps students understand the importance of being physically active. Students learn how much physical activity third graders need each day, and are introduced to some “let’s move rules” that will help them choose activities that contribute to good health and fitness. They discuss the benefits of physical activity and then complete a self-assessment to review their typical daily physical activity and the times when they are sedentary. They analyze the results and identify activities that would help them move more and sit less.

24

Lesson 24: My Goal to Move More

In this activity, students apply the goal-setting steps to a goal to increase their daily physical activity. They review how to set a goal and complete a goal-setting activity sheet. They keep an activity diary for the week and analyze the results to help them identify times and places when they could move more and sit less. They create badges and take home a mini-poster to remind them of their goal. They also take home a family sheet to help them discuss ways to get enough physical activity with their parents or guardians.

25

Lesson 25: Tobacco and Alcohol Are Dangerous Drugs

In this lesson, students learn important facts about tobacco and alcohol. After brainstorming what they already know about these two drugs, students read an article and compare key facts to what they think they know. Then they participate in an interview game to explain how tobacco, secondhand smoke and alcohol hurt the body, list benefits of being tobacco and alcohol free, and identify people who can help them stay drug free.

26

Lesson 26: Choosing to Be Tobacco and Alcohol Free

This lesson helps students make the personal choice to be tobacco free. Students review questions to ask themselves when making a decision. They work through an example modeled by the teacher, and then complete an activity sheet to practice making a healthy choice in relation to alcohol use.

27

Lesson 27: The Pressure Cooker

In this lesson, students learn about the pressure to use tobacco and alcohol. The metaphor of a pressure cooker helps them consider how pressure looks, sounds and feels. Students brainstorm what people might say and do to pressure them to use tobacco, alcohol or other drugs and the feelings this can cause. They review the dangers of tobacco and alcohol use and talk about how healthy friends won’t pressure them to do something that could hurt them.

28

Lesson 28: Where Does Pressure Come From?

This lesson continues the exploration of tobacco and alcohol pressures. Students learn that there are different influences on the choice to use tobacco, alcohol or other drugs, and consider how pressure can be external or internal. They discuss the influence of peers, advertising, and internal pressures such as curiosity or believing drug use will feel or make them look a certain way. Then they work in pairs to analyze how each of these influences could put pressure on young people to use tobacco or alcohol. They review benefits of being tobacco and alcohol free, and take home a family sheet to help them discuss staying away from tobacco and alcohol with their parents or guardians.

29

Lesson 29: Turning Off the Pressure

This lesson introduces refusal skills for resisting pressure to use tobacco or alcohol. Students brainstorm ways to turn off pressure, including knowing the facts and believing in their drug-free choice. They are coached through a practice session to help them say NO to pressure with their thoughts, words and actions. They review and share their reasons for avoiding tobacco and alcohol use; practice words they can use to say NO clearly and firmly; and demonstrate body language to reinforce the NO message. They discuss how they may need to say NO to pressure more than once, then make and wear badges to demonstrate and share what they’ve learned about resisting pressure.