Free Measles Classroom Resource for BC Teachers!
Measles is making headlines across Canada and the world, but not for a good reason. In 1998, Canada was declared measles free — so why is it making a comeback?
First things first, what is measles anyway? Measles, also known as red measles, is very contagious and spreads easily. Symptoms of measles include fever, cough, runny nose, red and inflamed eyes that are often sensitive to light. These symptoms are followed by a rash, which starts first on the face and neck, and spreads to the chest, arms and legs, and lasts about 4 to 7 days. There may also be small white spots inside the mouth. Symptoms can start as soon as 7 days after a person is infected with the measles virus.
Maybe that doesn’t sound too bad? Unfortunately, measles can lead to infections of the ear or lungs (pneumonia) and more serious complications. Children under 5 years of age and adults older than 20 years of age are more likely to suffer from measles complications. About 1 person in 1,000, measles causes inflammation of the brain (encephalitis), which can lead to seizures, deafness or permanent brain damage. About 1 person in 3,000 with measles can die from its complications. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that for every 1,000 children who get measles, one or two will die from it.
Did you know that measles is one of the most contagious diseases for humans? When an infected person breathes, coughs, or sneezes, the virus spreads through the air. The measles virus can survive in small droplets in the air for several hours. You can catch measles just by being in a room where a person with measles has been...but don’t panic! Measles can be stopped with the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine. Across Canada, children are offered 2 doses of the MMR vaccine to protect them from measles.
So, we have had a vaccine to stop the spread of measles, but we’re seeing outbreaks in Canada and all over the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) tells us that measles remains an important cause of death among young children globally, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine since the 1960s. The WHO reported that in 2017, there were 110,000 measles deaths globally, mostly among children under the age of five.
In developing nations, low measles vaccination rates are often caused by unequal access to health and lack of funding for vaccine programs. However, in Canada and Europe, vaccine misinformation has some parents choosing to not protect their children against measles and other vaccine preventable diseases. It is much safer to get the MMR vaccine than risk measles infection and its complications. Sadly, low measles vaccination rates allows measles to spread, causing illness and deaths around the world.
Do you know what smallpox, polio and measles have in common? They are three vaccine preventable diseases we can eliminate worldwide if vaccination rates are high enough. We actually already eliminated smallpox in 1980 and we’re almost there now with polio! Measles could be eliminated worldwide through vaccination, but it is only possible if we all come together as global citizens to stop this disease.
All our content is free for teachers!
Kids Boost Immunity (KBI) is a Canadian education platform made by educators, for educators. It is made possible through a partnership between the Public Health Association of British Columbia, the BC Ministry of Health and the Public Health Agency of Canada.
- How it fits the BC Curriculum
Our content provides a unique and tailored interactive classroom experience that is carefully curated to follow the BC school curriculum. In particular, our current lessons meet the learning outcomes of social studies grade 6, and science grade 8. We are also a recommended resource by the BC Educational Resource Acquisition Consortium (BCERAC).
- How it Works
We provide dozens of classroom activities and teacher resources, each of which are paired with an online quiz that students can take on a computer, tablet, or phone.
During our pilot, students were so immersed in the content that they continued to engage with the learning outcomes beyond their classroom. Our tests indicated that over 30% of all traffic came from students at home, who voluntarily chose to take optional quizzes after class.
The secret lies in our most unique aspect: For every quiz completed, we will donate life-saving vaccines to UNICEF Canada. The amount of vaccines we donate depends on the student’s performance, further incentivizing students to retain and meet curricular competencies.
With this unique reward, students are able to personally relate their classroom learning within a greater global context. By “earning” real vaccines, KBI gives the opportunity to empower students with a global, life-saving accomplishment.
Furthermore, we provide an opportunity for classes to compete against each other across Canada through leaderboards and classroom team structures. Teachers can encourage their class to become the top earning team across all of Canada!
- 100% of Content Provided For Free
Perhaps best of all: all of the resources, lessons, and quizzes on KBI are available to you entirely free.
As part of a government sponsored initiative, associated costs are covered by us and our external sponsors. For more details, read the “How We’re Funded” section.