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Poison Investigator

Lesson Objective:
Teach children that there are many types of poisons in the home. Children will understand how to identify items that are safe and items that are poisonous. Students will also understand that there are areas in the home that can contain poisons. They will be able to identify how to stay safe in these areas of their home.
Students Should Learn To:
  1. Define poison.
  2. Identify different types of poison.
  3. Recognize bottles or packages that indicate an item is poisonous.
  4. Stay away from areas in the home that could contain poisonous items: medicine cabinets, kitchen, bathroom, garage and storage areas.
  5. Never touch, taste, or smell something that could be poisonous, especially if you don't know what it is.
Teacher Preparation:
Before the lesson, collect the following:
  • Several magazines that include ads for cleaning products or other poisonous substances. Examples might be gardening magazines, Better Homes and Gardens, Country Living, or other home decorating magazines, even grocery ads
  • Poster board or construction paper for each child or each group
  • Safety scissors children can use
  • Glue
Break the children up into pairs or small groups. Provide each group with several magazines and newspaper ads, safety scissors, poster board or construction paper, and glue.
Key Terms:

Poison, Home, Danger, Substance

Poison Investigator Lesson

Teacher Narrative:

A poison is anything that can hurt you or make you sick if you eat it, drink it, breathe it in, or get it on your skin or in your eyes. We should never play with, touch, smell, or taste poisons. Grown-ups sometimes use poisons to do chores around the house, like cleaning and washing clothes. Poisons can be used to kill bugs, keep our cars running, and keep our yards looking nice. Even things we use to make us look and smell nice can be poisonous. For example: perfume, nail polish remover, and mouthwash can be poisonous. Similarly, medicine and vitamins, if used in the wrong way, can be poisonous. Many products are safe as long as they are used in the right amount and in the right way.

A. Lesson Instructions:

  1. Tell children that they’re going to be Poison Investigators. Their job is to look through the magazines or ads and find pictures of products that might be poisonous.
  2. Have children cut these products out of the magazine or ad and glue them on the poster board or construction paper.
  3. Once they have filled their poster with pictures of dangerous items, ask groups to describe what they found. Ask them what the different poisons are used for and where they may be found in the home.

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