Smoking Lesson - Grades 2 and 3
Grade Levels: 2 - 3
- Students will identify some of the harmful effects of smoking cigarettes.
- Students will improve decision-making ability.
- Students will clarify personal values and attitudes
- Ask the children to define the word, "pollution." Webster's New Word Dictionary of the American Language gives this definition: "Pol-lu-tion: to make unclean, impure, or corrupt; desecrate; defile; contaminate; dirty."
- Discuss pollutants in the air in the outside environment. Use pictures from magazines and newspapers. Include the pollution caused by factory smoke, car exhausts, rocket launches, and smoke from someone else's burning cigarette.
- Talk about how pollution makes the air "dirty."
- Have the children complete the Pollution Outside the Body activity sheet.
- Explain how all living things need air to breathe.
- Put a plant under an airtight container. What begins to happen?
- Put ants or other insects in an airtight jar. Give them everything else they need to survive. What happens? Why? (When the ants' activity begins to decrease, open the jar and set them free.)
- Study the picture on the Pollution Inside the Body activity sheet that shows the passage of air into the lungs.
- Talk about the fact that smoking cigarettes is harmful to our health, and how it "pollutes" the internal environment of our body (the lungs).
- Blow smoke from a cigarette through a tissue. (A smoking machine may be able to be obtained from your local Cancer Society or Heart Association.) What did you observe? Wouldn't that also make your lungs "dirty?"
- What would happen to us if something interfered with our breathing properly? How long does it take to use up all the air in your lungs? Hold your breath and have someone check the time. Did you have to breathe very soon after you started holding your breath?
- Demonstrate the effects of sick or injured lungs:
(1) Light a candle. Ask a child to stand a reasonable distance from the candle. Instruct the child to take a deep breath, and then blow out the candle. (2) Relight the candle. Ask the child to stand at the same distance from the candle. Instruct the child to take a deep breath and blow out at least half of the breath before attempting to blow out the candle. With the breath that is left, ask the child to blow out the candle. What happened?
- Identify and discuss other facts about cigarettes and cigarette smoking:
Cigarettes are made of brown leaves called tobacco.
Tobacco contains a drug called nicotine.
Smoking cigarettes deadens the nerve-endings for smell and taste.
People who smoke cannot smell or taste as well as nonsmokers.
- Look at the Pollution Inside the Body activity sheet again and find the nerve endings for smell. Find the nerve endings for taste on the tongue as shown in the activity sheet's illustration.
- People with stuffy noses cannot smell or taste well either. To simulate what it would be like for a smoker, ask a child to taste a snack. Then ask the child to hold his or her nose and taste the snack. Describe the difference. Ask other students to participate. A child can be asked to close his or her eyes, and hold his or her nose. Offer several different tasting foods. Have the child try to guess what foods are being offered. Discuss.
Smoking makes the smoker's clothes and other things around him or her smell.
Smoking stains the smoker's teeth.
Smoking costs a lot of money to buy cigarettes.
- Ask the children to create a poster illustrating the theme, "Smoking Is Dangerous for Your Health."
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