Subject(s): Science, English Language Arts
Grade Level(s): 11, 12
Computer for Presenter, Internet Connection, LCD Projector, Speakers/Headphones, Microsoft Office
Resource supports reading in content area:Yes
Keywords: yellow fever, vaccine, double blind trial, Africa, drug, drug testing, virus, text complexity, lesson plan
Lesson Plan Template: General Lesson Plan
Learning Objectives: What should students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
- Understand the health danger posed by yellow fever.
- Describe the importance of the development of a new vaccine against yellow fever.
- Discuss the methods used in the clinical trials to test the effectiveness of the vaccine.
- Cite specific and relevant text evidence to support analysis of the text.
- Use vocabulary strategies to define academic and domain-specific words in the text.
- Construct a written response that clearly establishes a main point(s), contains relevant textual evidence to support the main point, utilizes transitions to maintain flow, effectively uses domain-specific vocabulary, and provides an appropriate conclusion.
Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?
- Students should be familiar with the function and components of the immune system. They should understand the differences between specific and non-specific defenses. If students need a brief overview of the immune system, this Harvard outreach "Pathways of Defense" should be helpful. If a more thorough explanation of the immune system is needed, this Khan Academy video titled "Types of Immune Responses" will be useful.
- Students should be familiar with the purpose of vaccines and how they work to prevent pathogenic infections. This link accesses information by the CDC on "Understanding how Vaccines Work."
- Students should be familiar with the yellow fever virus. This link to the World Health Organization's website provides information about the virus.
- Students should be familiar with the purpose and terminology regarding double-blind experiments and how they work.
- Students should be familiar with the process vaccines must go through to get approved. These CDC and FDA sites explain the steps involved.
For literacy skills:
- Students should have prior experience utilizing various vocabulary strategies to determine the meaning of unknown words in a text. For this lesson, prior experience in using context clues to determine the meaning of words in a text would be beneficial. In addition, students should have some dictionary skills that will enable them to look up words with multiple meanings and determine the most appropriate meaning based on how a word is used in a text.
- Based on the rubric provided with this lesson, students should be able to respond to a writing prompt in a clear, organized manner that includes use of an introduction to establish the main point(s), body paragraphs that support the main point(s) and include relevant and specific textual evidence, and a conclusion that supports the main point(s).
- Students should have some awareness that use of transition words or phrases can help a piece of writing flow smoothly from one point or idea to the next.
Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
- Why is it important to have a new vaccine for the yellow fever virus?
Thousands of people are infected each year with yellow fever and many more die from acquiring the virus. There is no vaccine that is suitable for everyone, especially pregnant women and the elderly. The supplies of the current vaccine are limited, and with the re-emergence of the virus, it is important to have large quantities of a vaccine.
- Why is a double-blind trial important when testing the effectiveness of the new vaccine for yellow fever?
Phase 1 of the trial is to test the effectiveness of the vaccine in regards to an immune response and the safety of the new vaccine. The double-blind trial prevents any type of bias from occurring because the patients and the doctors do not know who is receiving what. For those receiving the experimental vaccine, some had an adjuvant added while others did not. An adjuvant is something added to a vaccine to increase an immune response. The addition of an adjuvant to the vaccine was also being assessed for its effectiveness.
Teaching Phase: How will the teacher present the concept or skill to students?
- Begin the lesson by showing a of a mosquito to the students. Ask the students to brainstorm in small groups everything they know about mosquitoes.
- Have students share the information on their lists. Students might indicate that the insects feed on blood, carry diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, Zika, etc.
- Explain to students that they viewed a picture of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is the species that carries yellow fever.
- Show this short video titled "The Dangers of Yellow Fever" by CNN. Tell students that yellow fever has re-emerged as a major health threat in parts of Africa and causes thousands of deaths each year, according to the World Health Organization.
- Explain to students that there have been mass vaccine campaigns to prevent yellow fever in Africa, but there are limited supplies of the current vaccine, and it is also known to have adverse side affects in certain populations.
- Finally, tell students they will be reading an article by The National Institutes of Health which discusses the development of a new yellow fever vaccine and the double-blind trial which will be testing its effectiveness and safety for humans.
Guided Practice: What activities or exercises will the students complete with teacher guidance?
- Pass out to each student a printed copy of the article or make it available to students electronically.
- For discussion purposes, the teacher may want to have students number each paragraph of the article. If using an electronic copy of the article, students can use a PDF mark-up tool (several tools are available as free downloads).
- Provide each student with a note-taking guide. Have students complete this guide during or after their first reading of the article. Make sure to provide print or online dictionaries for students to use for the vocabulary section.
- Note: Based on the needs and skills of the students, teachers can decrease the number of academic or domain-specific vocabulary students will define on the note-taking guide.
- For academic vocabulary, students will likely be able to use a variety of vocabulary strategies to define the meaning of the words. For domain-specific (in other words, subject-specific) vocabulary, students will typically need to draw on prior knowledge, use context clues, and/or use a dictionary to define the words.
- Students can work individually, in pairs, or in small groups.
- If students struggle with determining the meaning of the selected vocabulary terms, teachers might use the following tips to help them:
- Tolerable (Paragraph 1): able to be endured. Students should be able to determine the general meaning of the word based on the sentence it is found in. The text states how the vaccine must be tested to see if it safe, tolerable, and has the potential to prevent yellow fever. All of the words pertain to whether or not the vaccine will be okay and effective in humans.
- Fatigue (Paragraph 2): extreme tiredness or weakness, usually from a sickness. Context clues can be used to determine the meaning of the word. Fatigue is used to describe a symptom resulting from the yellow fever connection, and the symptom of weakness is also listed.
- Dubbed (Paragraph 6): to call or name. Students may need to use a dictionary for this term because there are not many clues to help determine its meaning. Have them substitute the different definitions into the sentence to see which one is most suitable.
- Intramuscularly (Paragraph 7): administered into a muscle. Students should break the word down into its separate components to determine the meaning of the word: intra- meaning within and muscular referring to the muscle.
- Assess (Paragraph 8): to evaluate the ability or quality of something. Students should use context clues to determine the meaning of the word. The article says "one of the goals is to assess" and it mentions a comparison of two of the different treatments involved in the clinical trials.
Formative Assessment (How will you check for student understanding?):
Teachers can check students' understanding by collecting their completed note-taking guides, checking their work, providing written feedback, or possibly grading the work. Or, teachers can have students share their responses and the teacher can provide verbal corrective feedback, allowing students to make corrections to their work during the discussion. Teachers are encouraged to not only ask students to explain the meaning they determined for a word, but the strategy they used to arrive at that meaning. This will allow the teacher to give alternative suggestions on ways the student could have arrived at the correct meaning of the word.
Common errors/misconceptions to anticipate and how to respond:
- Students might believe yellow fever only occurs in Africa; however, it is also a concern for those living or traveling in South America. This from the CDC shows areas of concern.
- Students may believe mosquitoes can only transmit viral diseases, but remind them malaria is caused by a protist and that some mosquitoes carry a parasitic worm that can be transmitted through a bite.
Independent Practice: What activities or exercises will students complete to reinforce the concepts and skills developed in the lesson?
Provide each student with a copy of the text-dependent questions to complete. Students should be reminded to continually refer back to the text and to use relevant and specific evidence from the text to support their answers.
Formative Assessment (How will teachers check for understanding?):
Teachers can check students' understanding by collecting their answers to the text-dependent questions, checking their work, providing written feedback, and maybe grading the assignment. Or, teachers can have students share their responses and the teacher can provide verbal corrective feedback, allowing students to make corrections to their work during the discussion.
Common errors/misconceptions to anticipate and how to respond: Please see the answer key for the text-dependent questions.
Closure: How will the teacher assist students in organizing the knowledge gained in the lesson?
- Before students complete the writing assignment for the summative assessment, review the responses to the text-dependent questions completed earlier by students. Make sure the misconceptions are corrected and the key points (as found in the sample answer key) are discussed.
- Students who are struggling writers can benefit greatly from seeing a well-organized, detailed written response. The teacher could show the sample response onanLCD projector and discuss some of the following:
- How the topic is introduced in the opening sentences of the introductory paragraph
- The main point(s) of the piece
- How each paragraph supports the main point of the piece
- How the writer effectively uses text evidence from the article to support his or her points
- How transition words or phrases are used to make the ideas flow
- Where domain-specific vocabulary is used accurately and effectively
- How the writer wrapped up the piece and connected back to his or her main point established in the introduction
- Have students form pairs. Assign each student one of the guided questions (above) and have them write a response. Have students share their answers with each other and with other members of the class to discuss the responses. This should take approximately 10-15 minutes.
- Students may submit written answers as a group product if you wish. This may be graded as a further assessment.
- Students will individually respond to the writing prompt. They should be directed to respond with a multi-paragraph response, with a clear introduction, body section, and conclusion. They should refer back to the text as they construct their response.
- Provide students with a copy of the rubric and go over it with them so they will know how their written response will be assessed.
- Go over the following writing prompt with students and make sure students understand what the prompt is asking them to address:
Using evidence from the text, discuss the process and clinical trials the vaccine must go through to be deemed effective, tolerable, and safe.
- Teachers will use the rubric to assess students' written responses.
Specific suggestions for conducting Formative Assessment can be found in the Guided Practice and Independent Practice phases of the lesson where it says, "How will you check for student understanding?"
Feedback to Students
Specific suggestions for conducting Feedback to Students can be found in the Guided Practice and Independent Practice phases of the lesson where it says, "How will you check for student understanding?"
Accommodations & Recommendations
For students struggling with the science content:
- Have students view the "The Immune System: Your Body's Private Defense System" (CPALMS ID 117031) if they still have questions about how a vaccine works and the importance of the immune system in regards to vaccines.
- If students need more information on yellow fever, the CDC site can provide information about the disease.
- PBS has an entire site dedicated to yellow fever discussing its history in the United States as well as a roundtable discussion by experts on the topic. The site is older but has valuable background information for students. The site can used to help students better understand the information from the article as well as provide a variety of information to explore.
For readers struggling with the text:
- It might benefit students to break the text into sections (each heading can be the start of a new section). Have students independently read section one, and then have several strong readers read section one aloud.
- Then, have students highlight (on their copy of the text) the terms from the note-taking guide that appear in section one. Work with students to model ways to define a few of the vocabulary words to get them started. The teacher can think aloud as he or she decides which vocabulary strategy or strategies to use to define a word, and think aloud while deciding which meaning from a dictionary entry with multiple meanings would be the best fit for how the word is used in the context of the article. Then students can work independently to define the meanings of the remaining words for that section. Students can report out their meanings and receive feedback from the teacher.
- Depending on the needs and skills of students, the following words were not included in the note-taking guide but might need to be added: sub-Saharan Africa, microbiology, tactic, scrutiny.
- Then, have students repeat this process for the remaining sections of the text.
- Finally, have students complete the concept organizer on the first page of the note-taking guide, share out their answers, and receive feedback on their work.
For struggling writers:
- It might help to provide students with an outline to help them structure their written responses for the summative assessment. The outline might include places for them to record:
- Ideas on how to introduce the topic
- A place to write down their main point(s)
- Topic sentences (the first sentence of each body paragraph that will reveal the point of the paragraph and will connect to the paper's overall main point)
- Specific evidence from the text for support in each body paragraph
- Ideas for transition words
- Ideas for use of academic vocabulary
- Ideas on how to wrap up their piece and connect back to the main point(s)
- Have students research Walter Reed and the discovery of the cause of yellow fever. Have students view the timeline of this event on the America's Story .
- Have students research Max Theiler and the yellow fever vaccine. He was the recipient of the Nobel prize for an effective yellow fever vaccine and so far is the only winner for a virus vaccine.
- Have students get into groups and research other diseases transmitted by mosquitoes. The American Mosquito Control Association site can provide information for students to begin their research. Have them report back to the class with their findings.
- PBS has an entire site dedicated to yellow fever discussing its history in the United States as well as a roundtable discussion by experts on the topic. The site is older but has valuable background information for students. This site can used to both help students better understand the information from the article as well as provide a variety of information to explore.
- Have students follow up with questions developed from the note-taking guide under the section "Questions you still have?"
Suggested Technology: Computer for Presenter, Internet Connection, LCD Projector, Speakers/Headphones, Microsoft Office
For teachers who would like more support in understanding and implementing Reading Standards for Literacy in Science and Technical Subjects into their science curriculum, please see the teacher tutorials featured in the section of this lesson's CPALMS resource page labeled "Attached Resources."
The text's grade band recommendation reflects the shifts inherent in the standards and is based on a text complexity analysis of a quantitative measure, qualitative rubric, and reader and task considerations.
Source and Access Information
Name of Author/Source: Ellen Muse
District/Organization of Contributor(s): Brevard
Access Privileges: Public
* Please note that examples of resources are not intended as complete curriculum.