Teaching Materials

Teaching Materials and Teacher Training on Diabetes and Cancer

Photo: Teenagers (© Christian Schwier, fotolia)
(© Christian Schwier, fotolia)
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More and more people are suffering from diabetes and cancer worldwide – Germany included. Children and teens are also affected – either directly as patients or most often indirectly - for example, when close family members become ill. In order to convey relevant factual knowledge and improve the health competence of schoolchildren, the topic should be more strongly integrated into school lessons. This will make it easier to achieve the educational goals of "health literacy" and "competence to act on health issues". At present, however, there are hardly any suitable teaching materials available on either topic. This gap is now being closed.

 

As part of the project "Fit in Health Matters", detailed, well-founded and youth-oriented teaching materials are currently being developed. From the spring of 2020 on, they will be available for download free of charge on this website of the Diabetes Information Service Munich. "Fit in Health Matters" is a joint project of Helmholtz Zentrum München and the  German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg (DKFZ). It is publicly funded by the Helmholtz Association. Therefore, no economic interests are involved in the services and information offered.

Attractive Teaching Materials

The aim is to enable young people to filter out reliable sources from the flood of information on the Internet and utilize it for themselves: (1) to be able to prevent illnesses they themselves can influence - e.g. via a healthy lifestyle, and (2) in the event of illness to be able to navigate the health system in a self-determined and well-informed manner. This means, for example, that the patients can discuss various treatment options with the attending physician, evaluate them for themselves and make an informed decision. Part of the teaching material is therefore devoted to general topics such as "health competence" and "dealing with illness". Practical knowledge about the structure of the German health system is also conveyed.

Conveying well-founded knowledge

The materials are presented in a scientifically sound manner, covering all facets of diabetes and cancer, including risk factors and possibilities for prevention and early detection, biological mechanisms in the development of diseases, various therapy options, and living with the disease. The materials also draw on the current  findings of the research institutions involved in the project Helmholtz Zentrum München and the German Cancer Research Center.

 

Strengthening media and health literacy

 

Studies show that the ability to collect information on health topics and to implement the findings in everyday life is not a matter of course for everyone in Germany. This also applies to teens and young adults or their parents. In order to counteract this, the project also promotes young people's media competence in dealing with health information. They learn to independently search for and find, understand, evaluate and apply high-quality information relevant to their health.

 

The aim is to enable young people to filter out reliable  sources from the flood of information on the Internet and utilize it for themselves: (1) to be able to prevent illnesses they themselves can influence - e.g. via a healthy lifestyle, and (2) in the event of illness to be able to navigate the health system in a self-determined and well-informed manner. This means, for example, that the patients can discuss various treatment options with the attending physician, evaluate them for themselves and make an informed decision. Part of the teaching material is therefore devoted to general topics such as "health competence" and "dealing with illness". Practical knowledge about the structure of the German health system is also conveyed.

 

A daily routine for people with diabetes mellitus: Measuring blood glucose levels. (© Piotr Adamowicz, stock.adobe.com)

Further training for teachers

The materials will first be tested at selected schools; the final versions will be presented in teacher training courses. The new teaching materials will be published free of charge and will be freely accessible on the websites of the project partners Helmholtz Zentrum München and DKFZ. Every two years they will be checked and updated.

 

The teaching materials will be applicable throughout Germany both in schools and at learning venues outside of school such as student laboratories and education centers.

Newsletter for teachers

A newsletter will be published at the beginning of each school semester, presenting the teaching materials as well as the further training offers and informing about new materials, updates and the dates of further training courses.


Evaluation with perspective

 

The project will be scientifically monitored and evaluated: In addition to quantitative criteria, qualitative aspects will also be examined. Once the project has been successfully completed, the materials can serve as best-practice models for working on other health topics from the Helmholtz Association's research spectrum, such as allergies or diseases of the lungs, cardiovascular system or nervous system.


[Translate to Englisch:] Foto: Patientin und Arzt im Gespräch. Die junge Patientin sitzt in einem Sessel und bekommt eine Transfusion; sie hat zwei Bücher und eine Tasse dabei. Der Arzt steht neben ihr, hält eine Mappe in der Hand und redet zu ihr. Im Hintergrund sitzt ein weiterer Patient, ein älterer Herr. (© Krebsinformationsdienst, Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum DKFZ)
New, targeted therapies often complement classical chemotherapy in the treatment of cancer patients. (© Krebsinformationsdienst, Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum DKFZ)

Participating Research Centers

Helmholtz Zentrum München

As a research center for health and environment, Helmholtz Zentrum München investigates the interaction of genetics, environmental factors and lifestyle in diabetes, allergies and chronic lung diseases. The aim is to find the most suitable options for prevention, diagnosis and therapy for each individual patient. The information services established at the Center compile what is currently known about the diseases. They then prepare this in easy-to-understand form for information disseminators and patients and publish this information online. In addition, Helmholtz Zentrum München has many years of experience with student laboratories and cooperation with schools, associations and universities.  

Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt (GmbH), Abteilung Kommunikation
Ingolstädter Landstraße 1, 85764 Neuherberg
Telefon: 089 3187-2711
www.helmholtz-muenchen.de

Diabetesinformationsdienst München
www.diabetesinformationsdienst-muenchen.de

 

 

 

German Cancer Research Center Heidelberg

The German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg investigates how cancer develops, identifies cancer risk factors and endeavors to find new strategies to prevent people from developing cancer. The DZFK develops novel approaches to make tumor diagnosis more precise and treatment of cancer patients more successful. The Cancer Information Service (KID) is a department of the DKFZ. It offers information about the widespread disease of cancer for patients, family members, the  general public and medical professionals. The DKFZ's Life-Science Lab is an attractive program for schoolchildren from grade 8 and up who are particularly interested and talented in mathematics, science and technology.

 

Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum (DKFZ)
Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, 69120 Heidelberg
Telefon: 06221 42-2890
www.dkfz.de

Krebsinformationsdienst
www.krebsinformationsdienst.de 

Life-Science Lab
www.life-science-lab.org

Status: 28. September 2018

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