In March of 2020, Illinois shut down all public schools to prevent the spread of Covid19, a novel coronavirus that was spreading across Europe and was found in the United States. At the time, my AP Biology class was studying viruses and epidemiology.
ISBE had released tips and strategies for dealing with the closures which included ways for students to continue their classes using Google Classroom and similar platforms. I assigned this disease project for my students as a way to continue their studies on pathogens and allow them some creative freedom to explore a topic of interest.
Students create an infographic, poster, or pamphlet that instructs the public about a disease. They can even choose a historic disease, like the Black Plague or polio. Students can choose from a list of diseases and may suggest their own for approval. The rubric outlines the requirements, such as explaining how the disease is spread, recovery outcomes, and prevention. Students will get a week to complete their project and will then review and grade other projects from their peers.
Though this won’t make up for 2 weeks of missed instruction, it does give students a relevant project to work on during this time period. Though, I also plan to give them other assignments to keep them on track for AP Biology content.