Public Service Announcement

Last year while working on the creation of the Disease and Society class I found myself deep in the semester and running out of ideas. One day during a class discussion a student made some comment about sexually transmitted diseases. At that moment, a lightbulb began to flicker on. What topic could be more interesting to students then that of sex and the consequences of careless sexual interactions. Now that I am on the second iteration of this class, it has been confirmed that a hastily crafted unit (and the subsequent revised version) are the most popular unit in the course. The topic is one that, like it or not, most teenage students can relate to. As evidence let me offer a recent class poll that indicated that 20 of 21 respondents knew someone who had an unintended pregnancy as a teenager. Sexual education is very important, but it seems to me that an honest, factual discussion about the consequences of one night goes further in making students think about the consequences of their actions.

In order to demonstrate their learning, students were asked to create short public service announcement videos with supporting infographics. Both the video and infographic were to be linked to QR codes which would be posted around the school. As you can imagine there are a lot of little black grids on the walls right now and many curious classmates. What good is a public service announcement if it is never seen by the public? Hopefully in the coming weeks I will have a chance to sit down and put together a post with the work of the students. For now, however, I will leave you with this installment of the week in review from Natalie Farrell and Jasmine Ray.

Natalie Begins:

This week in Diseases and Society, we continued our quest to understand the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. We worked on our unit 5 projects, which would be to create a PSA to educate about the true costs of one night. I truly enjoy this unit because it really hits home with most teenagers today. We also had a “myth busters” assignment. Each student was assigned a myth about a certain disease, and from there they had to disprove the myth with facts. This week we were instructed to write a blog about how the USA has come to a point where a third of its population is infected with an STD. I, personally, chucked it up to the promiscuity factor, but there are many causes of how we got to this point. Overall, this week in Disease and Society was quite successful.

Jasmine Concludes:

We talked about several STD”s.  We wrote a blog post about what we think people should know about a specific STD.  We did an activity, where we looked at stats about the three most common STD’s.  We did a myth buster activity.  With that activity we looked up stats about myths that people believe about STS’s.  We worked on our projects.  Mr. Kite did a script check.