This unit is part of a health initiative designed to be incorporated into the language arts curriculum. This unit will educate students on the importance of making healthy food choices and incorporating daily exercise into their lives for optimal adolescent and adult health. This unit will also educate the students on the future effects of not maintaining a healthy lifestyle. This unit is divided into four sections. The first section consists of the general functions of the cardiovascular system. This overview of the cardiovascular system will include vocabulary, how the heart functions, and a healthy heart rate. The second section focuses on weight gain: How do we gain weight and what is body mass index (BMI), what role do physical activity and good eating habits play in obesity? The third section will educate the students on over-the-counter pills and what role surgery plays in the treatment of obesity. The fourth section will focus on the susceptibility to disease/health risks that stem from obesity and adolescent obesity. The students will participate in small-group, whole-group activities. The students will be asked to keep and maintain vocabulary/note taking journals and create public service announcement posters. The comprehensive goal is for students to create pamphlets that are to be distributed to their classmates at a school-wide health fair, but the ultimate goal is for students is to learn lifelong skills to live a healthy lifestyle.
(Developed for Language Arts, grade 5; recommended for Middle School, grades 5-8)