Learning about Lyme disease and preventing tick-borne illnesses is rapidly becoming an important aspect of general health education. The CDC estimates that there are over 400,000 new cases of Lyme disease annually in the US—this is more than HIV/Aids, West Nile virus and Malaria combined!
Children are much more susceptible to contracting Lyme than adults, especially those 8–15 years old. Most Lyme-literate doctors and medical researchers believe that this is due to the following factors: that children are shorter in stature, and therefore closer physically to the ground; children like to play outdoors and roll around in grasses for both fun and sports activities; household pets—like dogs—that might inadvertently bring ticks into the home are often cuddled and snuggled by children. The ticks cross from the dog to the child and then latch on to them instead.
How and why children get bitten is not as important as teaching children from a young age that performing a daily tick-check is the best way to prevent them from contracting a tick-borne illness.
Health Education teachers can make a huge impact within your regular curriculum by offering lessons on the health impact of Lyme.
TickSense Lesson Plans and Materials
Here is our free, downloadable mini-unit on tick-bite prevention and Lyme disease. The curriculum is designed to be used as general health education information to help students understand how Lyme disease is transmitted, symptoms of the disease, and how to prevent tick bites. The material is aligned with California 5th and 6th-grade health education standards. The curriculum includes:
Teacher overview of Lyme and tick-borne diseases (.pdf, 18 pages)
Teacher powerpoint to show to your students (.ppt, 11 pages)
Here are individual links to the student assignments for ease of access to student worksheets and reproducible materials:
Parts of a tick worksheet (.pdf)
Brochure template (.pdf, two pages)
Tick survey and graphing worksheet (.pdf, two pages)
What do you know about ticks? Word search (.pdf, two pages)
Crossword puzzle (.pdf, two pages
For questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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