Tanning (ages 11 - 13)

             Good Skin Knowledge

Sun protection

Subtopic: Tanning
Age group: 11-13
Time: 45 min


  • State two reasons tanning beds are dangerous
  • State alternative to tanning beds
  • Recognize the difference between UVA and UVB rays


*If resources to play video are unavailable. Provide link to students for them to watch at home


  • At the end of the Introduction to New Material, Facilitator will check for questions.
  • During Guided Practice, Facilitator will walk around and assess students’ discussions from questions on handout.
  • During Guided Practice, Facilitator will assess class discussion regarding questions from handout as well as additional follow-up questions.
  • During Closing, Facilitator will ask review questions to see if students grasped main points from lesson.


5-7 minutes

1.    Facilitator explains that today they are going to talk about tanning—in the sun and especially in tanning beds.

2.    Facilitator asks if anyone can tell him/her about tanning in the sun or at the tanning beds.
       a. If students are unresponsive, Facilitator can move on to next question.

3.    Facilitator then asks, “Why do people/teenagers go tanning?”
       a. If students are unresponsive, Facilitator can ask students direct questions such as: Do you think it’s because of celebrities? Does it have to do with TV and movies? With beauty? What others think?

4.    Facilitator explains it is really common for teenagers to want to get tan to look “beautiful”. There is an idea that having paler skin isn’t beautiful, but that’s not true at all. Beauty is not about skin; plus, tanning is very dangerous for skin.

Introduction to new material

10-12 minutes

1.    Facilitator hands out Tanning Truths handout and reads through it as a class with students taking turns to read.

2.    Facilitator then plays “Self-tanner: How to apply” YouTube video.

3.    Facilitator checks for questions

Guided practice

20-25 minutes
: Tanning Truths handout

1.    Students break into pairs/small groups and answer discussion questions from Tanning Truths handout.

2.    Facilitator walks around and assesses students’ discussion and asks questions to help some students’ come up with ideas.

3.    After about 10 minutes, class discusses questions as a group.
       a. When going over Question 2 (What are some ways to protect their skin from the sun’s UV rays?), Facilitator should be sure to mention that it is important to use sunscreen that is at least SPF 30. They should apply sunscreen everyday—make it part of their daily routine. An easy way to do this is by using lotion that has sunscreen in it.

4.    Facilitator says that in some parts of the world, having pale skin is considered beautiful, so people use bleaching creams and washes, or have treatments to bleach their skin. This makes their skin lighter and makes them feel “beautiful” to society. What do you think?
       a. If students are unresponsive, Facilitator can ask more pointed questions like: Do you think it’s safe? Do you think it’s smart? Would you do it?
       b. Facilitator then asks how this is any different from tanning. Although wanting to be paler, they are still using dangerous methods to change the color of their skin.


5 minutes

1.    Facilitator asks review questions:
       a. What are some of the risks of tanning?
       b. What is a better alternative to tanning?
       c. What is the best way to protect your skin?
       d. What SPF should you use?
       e. What was the most interesting thing you learned today?

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Program made possible
through a grant from Stiefel, a GSK company.