Health Units (Grade 5)
All students in fifth grade take part in health classes that meet once a cycle for fifty minutes. Homework, small quizzes and tests are given on information taught throughout the year. The health curriculum expands on the knowledge that the students gained in wellness and focuses directly on the following topics:
Introduction to Health
During the first weeks of class, the students define health and identify ways to take responsibility for their own health status. The content includes choosing healthful behaviors, making responsible decisions, using refusal skills, and practicing life skills.
Personal Health Care
The emphasis of this unit of study is examining the responsibility of the students in maintaining good health. Attention is given to the importance of caring for the skin, eyes, ears, teeth and posture. The students begin to identify the ways in which the body changes during adolescence and the importance of taking responsibility for their own hygiene. This chapter also looks at the role of health care professionals in assisting individuals to take care of themselves. This chapter provides an easy transition into the human growth and development unit.
Human Growth and Development
This area of health familiarizes the students with the changes that take place within the body during adolescence. Emphasis is placed on the physical changes the students are experiencing now and in the near future. Social and mental development is also covered. The basics of human sexuality will be introduced. A letter explaining the content of this unit will be sent home prior to its introduction for parental review.
Drug Prevention and Abuse
This unit covers the correct use and potential abuse of prescription drugs and non-prescription drugs. Alcohol and tobacco are two of the substances covered. The students will be introduced to ways in which drugs can affect mental, physical, and social health. A significant portion of the unit focuses on refusal skills and ways in which students can choose healthful behaviors when faced with decisions concerning drugs.
In order to truly learn about healthful living, the students must apply what they have learned in the classroom to their own lives. For that reason, the students are encouraged to share information with their parents/guardians that was covered during health class. Allowing a few minutes for conversation about health topics can be the best form of homework! Support from adults both inside and outside of the school can only help promote healthy behaviors and habits in our children.