The Junior Disease Detectives: Operation Outbreak Graphic Novel
The 2.0 update is here! CDC has released two new STEM educational activities – Activity 2: Eddie’s Story and Activity 3: Hamlet’s story – for teachers to use with the Junior Disease Detectives: Operation Outbreak graphic novel. The 2.0 update also provides revisions to the educational overview” for teachers and classroom “activity 1.” All of these materials are available for download on this page in the “Educational Activities” section. See the spotlight article for more information.
Print copies of the graphic novel are available via CDC’s On Demand website under Pub ID 300568. Note: Print orders larger than one copy are prioritized for K-12 teachers and 4-H groups and supplies are limited.
CDC has partnered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and 4-H to develop “The Junior Disease Detectives: Operation Outbreak,” a graphic novel intended to educate youth audiences about variant flu and the real disease detective work conducted by public and animal health experts when outbreaks of infectious diseases occur.
This graphic novel follows a group of teenage 4-H members who participate in a state agricultural fair and later attend CDC’s Disease Detective Camp in Atlanta. When one of the boys becomes sick following the fair, the rest of the group use their newly-acquired disease detective knowledge to help a team of public and animal health experts solve the mystery of how their friend became ill.
CDC has partnered with teachers participating in its Science Ambassador Fellowship to develop educational activities to accompany the graphic novel for use in middle and high school science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) classrooms. The activities highlight themes in the graphic novel to teach youth about public health science, epidemiology, biology, outbreak investigations and associated career skills. The graphic novel and its associated educational activities are part of a broader CDC initiative with USDA and other agricultural partners to raise awareness, knowledge and understanding of a One Health approach to zoonotic disease prevention and response. The activities below are available for free download and use.
- Educational Overview CDC [135 KB, 5 pages, 508]: This document describes the learning objectives associated with the graphic novel and also topics related to influenza (flu) epidemiology, flu biology, zoonotic diseases, variant flu, novel flu and pandemic flu.
- Activity 1 – The Operation Outbreak Team CDC [200 Kb, 16 pages, 508]: In this activity, students learn the various roles and responsibilities of the professionals involved in an outbreak response.
- Activity 2 – Eddie’s Story [487 KB, 18 pages, 508]: In this activity, students investigate a disease outbreak and make data-driven decisions as the scenario progresses. Students will categorize cases of disease by the “who, what and when” (person, place and time) and medical features (clinical signs and symptoms) of disease. They then will use a case definition to determine if the cases are linked.
- Activity 3 – Hamlet’s Story [200 KB, 15 pages, 508]: In this activity, students explore and identify the different ways flu viruses can spread between animals and people.