This year (2004-05 school year), I am writing a series of articles for Junior High students, which we then discuss in class. Each article has discussion questions at the end. So far, the classes have been quite lively! I'm impressed by how interested the students are in learning about their health. The topics come largely from student interest (you will note that they had a whole lot of questions about the vast array of beverages on the market!). These articles were a jumping-off point for the classes, during which we went into more depth.
I plan to have several themes this year underlying all the content:
1) Promotion of a spirit of scientific inquiry - recognizing "junk science", asking pertinent questions, seeking empirical evidence, developing analytic skills.
2) Helping the students to begin to evaluate the levels of risks and tradeoffs of various health hazards.
3) Helping the students to begin to think in terms of relationships between individual health, community health, public health policy, and related political issues.
4) Identifying reliable sources of health information.
Are Schools Feeding Kids Too Much Junk? (new rules, etc.)
Tools So You Won't Be Fooled