I am very proud to present the teacher-authored instructional unit samples in Comprehensive Health. Each of these units represents the work of a team of Colorado educators to translate one curriculum overview sample into a full instructional unit with learning experiences, teacher and student resources, assessment ideas, and differentiation options. To learn more about the unit development process and the unique aspects of the Comprehensive Health units, please consider participating in one or more of the scheduled instructional unit webinars.
Each of the units posted here was authored by a team of Colorado educators. As examples, they are intended to provide support (or conversation/creation starting points) for teachers, schools, and districts as they make their own local decisions around the best instructional plans and practices for all students.
You can also view the complete list of Comprehensive Health curriculum overview samples and use the instructional unit template to begin constructing your own Colorado Academic Standards-based units.
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Unit Title: Happy is the New Healthy (Center School District)
Unit Description: This unit focuses on mental/emotional wellness with an emphasis on advocacy. Across the unit’s 3-4 week duration, students will define various issues of mental/emotional health (depression, anxiety and self-harm), in order to familiarize themselves with a multitude of resources to support mental/emotional health, and improve communication skills to meaningfully advocate for mental/emotional health on behalf of themselves and others. Additionally, students will leave with an understanding of the impact diversity and respect play in creating a more positive environment within their school.
Unit Title: Goal Setting, Self-Management, and Positive Decision Making (Gunnison Watershed School District)
Unit Description: This unit looks at substance abuse through the lenses of healthy goal setting, self-management, and positive decision making; behaviors that impact relationships throughout a person’s life. During this 3-4 week unit, students will identify positive support systems, both in their lives and their community, as well as analyze the risks and consequences of substance abuse. Students will reflect upon a variety of influences in their lives, their community, and in larger society, as well as consider the interactions of these influences. The unit culminates in a “Talk Show” designed to allow students to demonstrate all they have learned about substance use/abuse and interpersonal relationships.
Unit Title: Suicide Prevention (Positive Choices and Options) (Adams Five Star School District)
Unit Description: This unit allows students to develop an awareness of suicide prevention and become advocates for themselves and others by using effective communication skills to connect with emotions such as depression, anxiety and stress. During this 1-2 week unit, students will integrate prior knowledge of these emotions in order to recognize when distress may potentially become a warning sign for suicide. The unit culminates with a performance assessment that requires students to demonstrate effective communication and advocacy skills by creating a public service announcement to increase high school students’ awareness of suicide prevention.
Unit Title: Who Influences Me? (Adams Five Star School District)
Unit Description: This unit allows students to analyze the impact that media, culture and peers have on an individual’s development of communication, advocacy, and self-management skills. Throughout the unit, students will explore positive and negative influences and consider strategies that could be used to potentially minimize negative influences on mental and emotional well-being. The unit culminates in a performance assessment that asks students to design and present an action plan to the school community that promotes positive behaviors and/or changes negative influences/stereotypes to support positive mental and emotional health and well-being.
Unit Title: Setting and Respecting Personal Boundaries (Durango School District)
Unit Description: This unit analyzes high-risk situations faced by adolescents and the decision-making skills needed to establish personal boundaries and develop strategies to combat risky behaviors such as drug use, underage drinking and unwanted or unplanned sexual activity that could negatively impact personal health and goals. The unit culminates with students designing a PSA for teens that will demonstrate an understanding of decision making and self-advocacy skills to maintain personal boundaries in order to minimize risky situations.
Unit Title: Nutrition For a Healthy Life (Englewood School District)
Unit Description: This unit looks at an adolescent’s support systems and influences such as (family, peer and media) and how they impact a person’s decisions for making healthy food choices. Additionally, the unit will allow students to explore the importance of developing personal support systems to maintain overall physical and emotional wellness. The unit culminates in the creation of a public service announcement that will ask students to express what they have learned about living a nutritionally balanced life.
Unit Title: Media Messages and Your Health (Canon City School District)
Unit Description: This unit looks at alcohol and tobacco use through the lens of informational awareness, skill building, and positive decision making. During this 3-4 week unit, students will examine and differentiate between media/ social portrayals and the realities of alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use and abuse. Students will also reflect on how media and advertising influence their personal decisions while gaining skills to critically analyze powerful media influences.
Unit Title: Positive Communication in Times of Conflict (East Grand School District)
Unit Description: This unit looks at ways to de-escalate conflict through anger management strategies, advocacy skills, and positive communication among peers, teachers, family members, and the community. Students will examine the effects of violence in our history and what strategies can be used to decrease violence in our lives today by analyzing the concepts of conflict, bullying, and harassment and make connections to their own personal experiences. The unit culminates with a performance assessment that has students create a children’s story book that will describe and illustrate how to de-escalate conflict in a non-violent way, show positive communication skills when talking to adults and/or peers involved in the conflict, and apply advocacy skills for you and others.
Unit Title: Human Growth & Development (Thompson School District)
Unit Description: This unit examines the structure and function of body systems and the changes that occur as we mature. Throughout the unit students will explore the physical and emotional characteristics of the maturation process, make personal connections to their individual growth and development, and establish positive coping skills. The unit culminates in a performance assessment that asks students to help their peers recognize the natural changes that occur to human bodies at developmental stages.
Unit Title: Safety (Poudre School District)
Unit Description: This unit is designed to build upon basic decision making skills and incorporate higher level communication behaviors needed to manage external influences such as interpersonal relationships, peer pressure and social media. The development of these tools will allow students to become better equipped to deal with potential life experiences such as resolving conflicts, maintaining personal safety, and protecting personal boundaries. The ultimate goal of this unit is to provide students with the confidence and knowledge to develop healthy relationships and maintain overall health and wellness. It concludes with students analyzing social dilemma scenarios to design a role play that depicts the negative choice followed by a depiction of a positive resolution.
Unit Title: Communication Works for Everyone (Del Norte School District)
Unit Description: This unit addresses positive communication skills as it relates to personal needs, boundaries, and pro-social behavior in order to establish healthy relationships. Through the examination of effective communication skills students will investigate the importance of positive decision-making in order to enhance elements of healthy relationships such as advocacy, cooperation, consideration and respect. Across the unit students will explore boundary setting, verbal and non-verbal communication strategies and definitions/attributes of sportsmanship.
Unit Title: Be a “Buddy” not a “Bully” (West Grand School District)
Unit Description: This unit uses friendship relationships to help students develop their understanding of healthy interpersonal relationships as well as unhealthy bullying relationships. Through the examination of effective communication skills (speaking and listening) and perspective-comprehension strategies, students will actively explore proactive anti bullying and empathy-building activities. The unit culminates with students creating (audience) interactive skits to share their perspective on bullying prevention. The ongoing learning experiences center around role-playing as a means to scaffold and prepare students for the creation of their own skits.
Unit Title: Express Myself (Canon City School District)
Unit Description: This unit uses listening skills and appropriate expression of emotions to help students develop their understanding of healthy and positive communication skills and problem solving strategies. Through the examination of both verbal and non-verbal communication and examples of polite and empathetic responses, students will actively explore various forms of communication. The unit culminates with students creating a poster project that depicts a problem and solution using problem solving strategies they have learned though out the unit. The ongoing learning experiences center around role-playing as a means to scaffold and equip students with lifelong skills.
Unit Title: Healthy Relationships (Adams Five Star School District, Boulder Valley School District, and Denver School District)
Unit Description: This unit provides an opportunity for students to develop communication skills for establishing and maintaining healthy relationships. They will learn how to identify trusted adults, recognize personal space and boundaries, and begin to self-advocate in unsafe situations. Students will explore aspects of nonverbal and verbal communication, respect for self and others and levels of danger and emergency contacts. The unit concludes with students taking on the role of a puppet master to create a puppet show for their peers depicting teacher prompted scenarios to include an unsafe situation, identifying the trusted adults, and how to communicate verbally and/or nonverbally for help.
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