We have 23 learning about pandemic vs epidemic lessons, STEM lessons, projects and epidemic classroom activity that differentiate between an epidemic and a pandemic, describe epidemics and pandemics in biology science, do disease transmission simulation, understand disease outbreaks of contagious diseases, talk about health emergencies and more!
Learning about contagious diseases are an important to your STEM studies because no matter how old your students or where you live, it’s something that all of us deal with at some point in life.
Not only that, understanding the diseases can help with children’s concerns during emergency times and is an effective way in helping kids cope during stressful times.
Before we get to the epidemic vs pandemic lesson plan ideas and activities to teach about spreading infectious disease, let’s cover some basic contagious disease information…
Pandemic vs Epidemic
What is the difference between pandemic and epidemic?
The difference between epidemics and pandemics are mostly how wide the infectious disease has spread. Epidemics happen when an infectious disease spreads quickly among a group of people. The spread happens quickly, generally within 2 weeks. A pandemic happens when the infectious disease has spread beyond a community or country into other countries and across continents.
What are some examples of epidemics?
An influenza (“flu”) that spreads throughout schools in a close communities and making thousands of students, teachers, and parents sick may be considered an epidemic.
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What defines a pandemic?
Pandemic meaning: When an infectious disease (or, diseases that you can spread or catch) spreads beyond a local area into other countries and across continents worldwide, it becomes a pandemic. Pandemic disease spreads across a very wide area and affects many people.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO):
“A pandemic is defined as ‘an epidemic occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people.’ The classical definition includes nothing about population immunity, virology or disease severity.”
Six Stages of a Pandemic
The World Health Organization (WHO) lists six stages of a pandemic virus:
- The virus is found in animals, but not in humans.
- The virus has been found in humans.
- There are small clusters of the disease found, but it is not spreading rapidly.
- The virus is being passed from human-to-human and there are community outbreaks of the disease.
- The virus has spread to at least two countries. A full-fledged pandemic is imminent.
- The disease is now classified as a full-fledged pandemic.
Pandemics History includes:
- Bubonic Plague (“Black Death”)
- HIV / AIDS
- Yellow Fever
The CDC has a list of great resources to go with this topic!
OK! Let’s get to the pandemic lessons, epidemic lessons and STEM activities and science lesson plans to go along with them.
23 Pandemic vs Epidemic Lessons and Activities for Kids
- Watch the video Epidemic vs Pandemic: What exactly is the difference?
- Read a book on Virus vs. Bacteria.
- Watch the short video on outbreaks, pandemics and epidemics.
- Read Pandemics That Changed History
- Do a lesson on Endemic, Epidemic or Pandemic?
- Watch, Unseen Enemy.
- Watch, Germs Movie for Kids Virus & Bacteria Introduction.
- Play a pandemic board game.
- Grab a lesson plan, Nature of an Epidemic.
- Get a pandemic lesson plan.
- Read, Plague!: Epidemics and Scourges Through the Ages.
- Do a Solve the Outbreak simulation online (disease outbreak simulation game / pandemic computer game).
- Get Solve the Outbreak lesson plan ideas.
- Play a virus card game.
- Complete a disease outbreak activity.
- Do a microbial study activity.
- Watch the video, The 1918 Pandemic: The Deadliest Flu in History.
- Watch the animated video, What Is a Virus?
- Review and practice proper handwashing techniques.
- Watch a pandemic film documentary, Virus Empire: From SARS to Ebola.
- Do a lesson on ebola.
- Grab the lesson, The Flu in Context: Epidemics, Vaccines and Prevention.
- Do a “viral packing” project.
IF WE MISSED ANY PANDEMIC VS EPIDEMIC RESOURCES, LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS SO WE CAN ADD THEM!