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Activity: Cancer Stations
1. To identify the causes of cancer.
2. To state the relationship between cancer and the cell cycle.
3. To describe several methods of cancer treatment and cancer prevention.
Background Information:
Cancer is actually a group of many related diseases that all have to do with cells.
Cells are the very small units that make up all living things, including the human body.
There are billions of cells in each person's body.
Cancer results when cells that are not normal grow and spread very fast. Normal
body cells grow and divide and know to stop growing. Over time, they also die. Unlike
these normal cells, cancer cells just continue to grow and divide out of control and don't
Cancer cells usually group or clump together to form tumors (say: too-mers). A
growing tumor becomes a lump of cancer cells that can destroy the normal cells around
the tumor and damage the body's healthy tissues. This can make someone very sick.
Sometimes cancer cells break away from the original tumor and travel to other areas of
the body, where they keep growing and can go on to form new tumors. This is how
cancer spreads. The spread of a tumor to a new place in the body is called metastasis
(say: meh-tas-tuh-sis).
Materials: Internet access, beads, articles on cancer, brochure on tobacco/smoking
facts, table of cancer statistics, unitedstreaming video clip on cancer,
Rotate through the station activities and complete the required task(s) for each
station. You do not need to visit the stations in chronological order. Answer all
questions in complete sentences.
Station 1: Computer Website
1. Go to Select Causes and Prevention > Click on Overview.
Answer the following questions:
a. What percentage of all cancers are inherited?
b. What percentage of all cancers are caused by synthetic material?
2. Click on Smoking. Answer the following questions:
c. Lung cancer is almost entirely preventable, since most cases are due to
what activity?
d. What is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States?
Station 2: Video Clip
 View the video clip on skin cancer and answer the following questions:
a. What is the name of the skin cancer often caused by exposure to
ultraviolet radiation from the sun?
b. What is the name of the chemical pigment found in our skin cells that
absorbs ultraviolet light and keeps it from damaging our tissues?
c. Where are these chemical pigments located in our skin?
Station 3: Article
 Read the article Cancer prevention: 7 steps to reduce your risk of cancer and
answer the following questions:
a. Describe 3 things you can do to reduce your risk of cancer.
b. List two facts you learned about eating healthy from this article.
c. List two facts you learned about staying active and maintaining a healthy
weight from this article.
d. How can you reduce your risk of skin cancer?
Note: This article can be found at:
Station 4: What is Cancer? – A Simulation
1. Use the circle on the paper provided to represent an area inside the human body.
Use the beads provided to represent the cells in that area.
2. Suppose each cell divides every 30 seconds. Use the circle and the beads to
model this situation.
3. Add one bead to the circle. This represents one cell.
4. After 30 seconds, the cell undergoes cell division producing two new daughter
cells; therefore, add one more cell (bead) to the circle for a total of two cells
5. After another 30 seconds, the two cells in the circle will again divide, for a total of
four cells (beads).
6. After 30 more seconds, each of the four cells in the circle will divide again with a
total number of eight cells (beads).
7. Continue to model the divisions, until no more cells (beads) can fit in the circle
(body area).
8. Answer the following questions. Refer to pages 71 and 72 in your text for more
a. Explain the relationship between cancer and the cell cycle.
b. How does this activity simulate the development of a cancerous tumor?
c. How does cancer spread?
Station 5: Tobacco Fact Sheet
1. Do not write on the brochure. Read the self-test questions on the brochure and
respond silently to the questions (without writing or speaking).
2. Open the brochure and read the correct answers.
3. Write three new facts you learned about smoking and cancer from completing
this activity.
Station 6: Statistics
Study the table title Some U.S. Cancer Statistics and answer the following questions:
a. Which type of cancer has the most new cases per year?
b. What are the three most common types of cancer?
c. What surprised you after looking at these statistics?