For the Classroom: Tobacco and Hands-on Science
Objective: Educate students on a few of the physical dangers of smoking
Time: 30 minutes
Supplies for each student or group:
- 2 large cotton balls
- small plastic bottle
- modeling clay
Hands-on science. (At the lower elementary grades, teachers should perform this demonstration.)
1. Place a large cotton ball inside the small plastic bottle.
2. Seal the bottle with a chunk of modeling clay.
3. Poke the filter end of a cigarette through the clay so that it’s inside the bottle.
4. Light the other end of the cigarette — the end that’s sticking out of the bottle.
5. Slowly pump or squeeze the plastic bottle 6-10 times to simulate a person puffing on the cigarette. Then remove the cigarette from the clay. Crush out the lit end.
6. Invite students to take a close look at the cotton ball and compare to an unused cotton ball.
Discussion: Ask students engaging questions such as:
- What does this demonstration show us about smoking?
- How does what we see on the cotton ball tell you about what smoking a cigarette may do to our lungs?
- How do you think the lungs look on a person that smokes a pack of cigarettes a day? Over a year span? 20 year span?
Adapted from www.educationworld.com.
Additional Great American Smokeout information and teacher activities:
- The Great American Smokeout: Anti-Smoking Activities. EducationWorld.
- Lesson Plan Library: Smoking. Discovery Education.