I haven’t been posting anything lately because the school year is close to ending and everyone we’re trying to finish their end of the year projects and such.
The Swine Flu has been dominating the media for the past two-three weeks. Coincidentally, the 10th graders at our school are doing a project about different diseases. It’s actually amazing how our project fell into perfect synchronization with the outbreak of the swine flu.
One of the first things we learned was how to prevent the influenza from spreading. However, some students are reacting strongly about the swine while others aren’t worried at all. We’ve had students go home early on school days because their parents were afraid that they can catch the flu, we’ve had students wear masks to school, etc. If anyone shows a symptom of the flu last week, they were usually sent home and stayed home until the symptoms are gone regardless if they had the flu or not.
The disease project is a chance for students to work together as a group of three to try to think critically and solve a problem. This project integrates different components from our History, English, Biology, and Health and Bioscience class. Every group is given a country and disease that broke out in that country. We are supposed to develop a plan to prevent the spread of the disease as well as curing or treating those that already have the disease.
Each person is given a specific role in their group – Epidemiologist, Professor of Ethnic Studies, and Minister of Health. The epidemiologist does all of the science work (I.E: Vaccines, cures, treatments, how is the disease spreading, viral structure, etc.) The Professor of Ethnic Studies covers the economic, cultural and ethnic make up of the nation and how those factors would impact a massive public health. The Minister of Health’s goal is to keep the general public healthy. As a group, we have to think out a plan where we can stop the disease from spreading/eradicate the disease and also defend it from each of our roles.
Back to the Swine Flu… After learning about the swine flu more, you would expect students to be more calm, but that’s not the case. It seems like the more we learn about the swine flu and how deadly it can be, the more we freak out. However, as of recently, the swine flu has not been on the news 24/7 so the students are not reacting to the flu anymore. We learned that the swine flu is not deadly if treated within 48 hours of the first sign of symptoms, things like face masks do not work because the virus is small enough to fit through the holes, etc. It’s not often that you learn about these things in school and I am very fortunate that I am able to learn it.