Student Web Activity

Chapter 13 Lesson 2: Say No to Second-Hand Smoke


Smoking is bad for your health, but what many teens do not realize is that breathing the smoke that others exhale can also damage your body.  This smoke is known as “second-hand smoke,” and you will learn more about it and why it is so dangerous on the Web site below.

Link to explore: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:


  • Start at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Web site.
  • Read through the page on second-hand smoke. 
  • Take notes as you read.  When you are done reading, answer the questions below.
  • Finally, using the information from the link, create a poster that lists ten things you think other teens should know about second-hand smoke.


  1. How many of the 4,000 chemicals found in cigarettes are known to cause cancer in humans or animals?
  1. What is second-hand smoke?
  1. How many deaths occur each year as a result of lung cancer caused by exposure to second-hand smoke?
  1. What kinds of physical problems can second-hand smoke cause in children?
  1. Who is primarily responsible for children’s exposure to second-hand smoke?


  1. 40 of the 4,000 chemicals found in cigarette smoke are known to cause cancer in humans or animals.
  1. Second-hand smoke is a combination of a smoker's exhaled smoke and the smoke from the burning end of his/her cigarette, pipe, or cigar.
  1. EPA estimates that exposure to secondhand smoke causes approximately 3,000  lung cancer deaths per year in nonsmokers.
  1. In children, second-hand smoke can cause asthma, pneumonia, bronchitis, and middle ear infections and increase the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
  1. Parents are responsible for 90% of children’s exposure to second-hand smoke.

Additional Resources for Teachers

Below are some additional resources on second-hand smoke and what is being done about it.  You might want to have teens share their own experience with second-hand smoke and how they feel about it.  Have them brainstorm ways they can work to make their communities smoke free in public places.

  1. CDC – Taking Action Against Second-hand Smoke:
  2. PBS:
  3. BADvertising:
  4. Death Cards:
  5. Don’t Buy the Lie: