Unit 1

To view the available materials, select a lesson.

Unit Lesson Essential Skills
1. What Is Air Pollution? 1. Air, Air—It's Everywhere! Mathematics; Science; Health Education
2. How Does the Air Get Polluted? English, Language Arts, and Reading; Science

Unit 1: What Is Air Pollution?

Clean air is a mixture of nitrogen and oxygen, with less than 1 percent carbon dioxide, argon, and other gases—along with varying amounts of water vapor. Even small amounts of particles and gases, called air pollutants, that are not part of this normal composition can cause us serious health and environmental problems. Air pollution is a problem in many areas of the United States. It can damage trees and lakes, and make people and animals sick. It can also damage buildings and other structures. Air pollution can cause haze, reducing visibility in national parks and sometimes interfering with aviation. The federal government regulates air pollution in order to protect human health and the environment.

Teacher Guide

Subjects Addressed:

English, Language Arts, and Reading; Mathematics; Science; and Health Education

This unit is designed to offer you maximum flexibility. Students are introduced to the basic concepts of air, air pollution, and environmental responsibility. The lessons can be taught as a whole (all activities) or individual activities may be extracted and taught separately as a complement to other curriculum materials you may be using.

Essential Questions:

What is air, and why is it important?
Where is the air?
How does the air get polluted?
How can pollution affect our health and daily lives?


Lesson 1: Air, Air—It's Everywhere!
Conduct simple and entertaining science experiments to illustrate the properties of air.

Lesson 2: How Does the Air Get Polluted?
Students become familiar with what constitutes air pollution and how vehicles contribute to the problem through stories, vocabulary activities, and science experiments.

Clean Air Tips