Gender and Tobacco - Lesson Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 7 to 9

Author: This lesson has been adapted from Smoke-Free for Life, a smoking prevention curriculum supplement from the Nova Scotia Department of Health, Drug Dependency and Tobacco Control Unit.


In this lesson, students explore gender-related influences on smoking. They discuss the numbers of male and female smokers in Canada and around the world, and the strategies used by tobacco companies to reach both men and women. In separate groups, male and female students explore and discuss the relationship between smoking, the tobacco industry, tobacco marketing, and their gender, by deconstructing and analyzing tobacco ads from magazines for men, for women, and for a general audience. Extension activities include examining a newspaper article that highlights some of the reasons young women smoke, and a research project on how the tobacco industry targets men and women in developing nations.

Learning Outcomes

Students will demonstrate:

  • an awareness of smoking as a global issue
  • an understanding of the ways in which the tobacco industry targets men and women
  • an awareness of the issues that relate to gender and tobacco marketing
  • an understanding of the reasons why young men and young women smoke
  • an understanding of the health risks associated with smoking

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) is available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.

Lesson Kit