Harmful Effects of Smoking Lesson Plan: An Investigation

Submitted by: Edric Tom

Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, K-3

In this lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades K-8, students use BrainPOP Jr. and/or BrainPOP resources to explore how the lungs are affected by smoking. Students investigate the anatomy of a cigar and understand its components. Next, they record and organize data as they investigate the harmful effects of smoking on humans.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Understand how the lungs are affected by smoking
  2. Investigate the anatomy of a cigar and understand its components
  3. Understand the harmful effects of smoking on humans


  • Books about smoking and lungs, such as these recommendations
  • 4 models of healthy lungs and smokers' lungs
  • Markers
  • Access to BrainPOP
  • Paper
  • Pencils


smoking; smoker; lungs; nicotine; addictive; tobacco

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Introduce students to the topic of Smoking by taking the BrainPOP quiz on Smoking, and/or one of the BrainPOP Jr. quizzes on Smoking. Use the quiz to facilitate discussion.
  2. Watch the BrainPOP or BrainPOP Jr. movie, pausing to discuss and take notes as key concepts arise.
  3. Split the class into groups of 4. Have each group compare and record the differences between a smoker's lungs and a non-smoker's lungs. Invite kids to read some of the books you've provided to find answers to their questions and research data on smoking.
  4. Groups can take turns rotating through related features of BrainPOP (FYI, Q&A, etc.) and BrainPOP Jr.(game, activity, etc.) to enhance their knowledge and deepen their understanding of the topic.
  5. After students have had ample time to conduct research through BrainPOP, the books, the model lungs, and books, get together and summarize what they learned in a class brainstorm.
  6. Decide as a class how to organize the information and data students have collected (poster, mini-book, chart, etc.) Model the data organization for students and guide them through the process of creating their project.

Extension Activity:

Invite students to explore the BrainPOP movie on Addictions and/or the BrainPOP Jr. movie on Lungs.
  • danabrainpop

    Does anyone have a website they can recommend to find models or images of healthy lungs? Sounds like a good teaching tool.