Prevention of infection: vaccinations

Teaching Time: 50min

Target Group: Key Stage 3

Curriculum Links:

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

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

Geography: Human and physical geography, Geographical skills and fieldwork

Learning Objectives:

All students will:

  • understand that vaccines help prevent a range of bacterial and viral infections.
  • understand that there are not vaccines for all infections.

Most students will:

  • understand that previously common infections are now rare due to vaccines.
  • understand that the most common infections such as the common cold or sore throat are not prevented by vaccines.
  • understand that vaccines are dead or weakened microbes.

Some students will:

  • understand that declining vaccination rates mean that rare infections could become more common again in some places.
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This section covers the topic of disease prevention through vaccinations. Vaccines are used to help prevent infections from causing us harm. If we hadn't discovered vaccines, over half of your students would not have survived long enough for you to teach them!

Activities and tools include:

  • An activity where students take part in a simulation to see how vaccines are used to prevent the spread of infections and discover the significance of herd immunity.
  • Activity for more able students, examining World Health Organisation (WHO) data on the measles vaccination and attempt to explain why measles kills more children in Africa than in Europe despite the vaccine being available.
  • Activity asking students to assess which vaccines are necessary to visit certain countries of the world, and why.
  • Explore the UK childhood vaccination timeline using an interactive tool.
  • Compare the vaccination schedules between two European countries, or search for a specific disease and explore the vaccinations in many different countries and for different age groups.





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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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