Antibiotic Use and Medicine

Teaching Time: 50min

Target Group: Key Stage 3

Curriculum Links:

Science: Working scientifically; Scientific attitudes, Experimental skills and investigations, Analysis and evaluation

PSHE: Core Theme 1 - Health and wellbeing; Core Theme 3 - Living in the wider world

GCSE Health and Social Care: Factors affecting health and wellbeing, measuring health, health promotion

Learning Objectives:

All students will:

  • understand that most common infections will get better by themselves through time, bed rest, liquid intake and healthy living.
  • understand that if you have antibiotics, finish the course.
  • understand that you must not use other peoples or leftover antibiotics.

Most students will:

  • understand that bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics due to overuse.

Some students will:

  • understand that overuse of antibiotics can damage our normal/useful bacteria.
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Illnesses due to antibiotic resistant microbes are a worrying problem in our hospitals and communities. This section explores the use of antibiotics and medicine in treating various illnesses and infectious disease.

Activities include:

  • Practical activity where acids and bases in agar plates are used to represent bacteria and antibiotics and students test a range of antibiotics (acid solutions) on bacteria (indicator in agar base) cultured from patient samples and determine which illness the patients have from a list provided.
  • Discussion activity encourages students to research relevant ‘hot topics’ related to antibiotic use today.

The video below presents a demonstration of the practical activity using agar plates mentioned above.






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DISCLAIMER: e-Bug was developed for use in schools pre-COVID-19 and so some activities may require modification based on your school’s distancing guidelines.

Please use your judgement and tell us how you have modified the activities, or if you would like to discuss some ideas, contact

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