Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 3-12, students watch the BrainPOP movie Concussions and explore the other features in this topic to learn about the causes and effects of concussions. They will then apply their understanding by creating informational brochures for a doctor’s office.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Share what they know about concussions, including causes, effects, and treatment.
  2. Complete a graphic organizer identifying how concussions are caused, prevented, soothed and worsened.
  3. Use what they learned to create a doctor’s office brochure on the topic of concussions.



fluid, membrane, cranium, neuron


  • Preview the movie Concussions to plan for adaptations.
  • Make copies of Concussion Graphic Organizer
  • Lesson Procedure:

    1. Display the Cause and Effect Chain Graphic Organizer. Ask students what they know about concussions. Prompt them to share stories about people they know who’ve had concussions (including themselves), including what caused them and the effects of the concussion. Jot their responses on the graphic organizer.
    2. Show the movie Concussions to the whole class on the whiteboard. If necessary, pause to discuss key terms and concepts, such as protective membranes, cranium, neurons, MRI, CT scan, post-concussive syndrome, depression, long-term memory loss, and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).
    3. Next, divide the class into pairs. Distribute the Concussion Graphic Organizer. Have pairs watch the movie again together. As they watch, instruct them to fill in the graphic organizer, identifying what causes concussions, prevention, how to soothe them, and what will worsen a concussion. Tell them they should also include the effects or symptoms even though there is not a space for it.
    4. After watching the movie and completing the graphic organizer, have students read the In Depth Related Reading to learn more about the brain and how concussions affect it.
    5. Have pairs use their completed graphic organizers and what they’ve learned to create an informational brochure about concussions, like the type you find in a doctor’s office. Make samples available if you have some, for students to use as models. Suggest students divide the work, so that each writes different sections, such as causes, symptoms, treatments, prevention, long-term effects, etc.
    6. When all pairs have completed their brochures, have them put them on display in your classroom to share with each other.

    Extension Activities:

    Have students put on short skits in which they role play a patient with a concussion and a doctor diagnosing it, making suggestions on treatment.