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The American Lung Association


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Biology, Health

Resource Types

  • Articles and Websites
  • Interactive Media
  • Charts, Graphs, and Tables

Regional Focus

North America, United States

American Lung Association: State of the Air Report

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  • This report provides summarized air quality findings for the United States, a searchable database for air quality by zip code, "report cards" for the cleanest and most polluted cities, connections to health and demographics, and recommendations for taking action to prevent air pollution. 
  • The information presented is comprehensive and up-to-date. 

Teaching Tips


  • This website report is broken down into various topics, making it easier to digest; it also presents the data in graphs and diagrams to help students visualize the data.
  • The interactive portions of this resource allow students to explore different parts of the United States. 

Additional Prerequisites:

  • Students should know how to read a bar graph and pie chart.


  • Cross-curricular connections could be made with classes covering social justice, environmental justice, civics, climate change, and human health.
  • Have students access the report card for a state or ZIP code of interest. Allow students to explore the data and ask questions. What are they surprised by? What is not surprising? 
  • As an extension, consider having students get involved in a local initiative to improve their air quality. There are several recommendations for action listed in the resource that students of any age could try.
  • Individuals or groups of students could draft letters to their local, state, or national government officials to request they enact or support the enforcement of air quality regulations. 
Scientist Notes
This resource is recommended. It provides a clear understanding on the impact of ozone and other particulates on human health. Hence, there is no contradiction in the terms, data, and methods used in this resource.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Geography
      • D2.Geo.10.6-8 Analyze the ways in which cultural and environmental characteristics vary among various regions of the world.
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.6.6-8 Draw on multiple disciplinary lenses to analyze how a specific problem can manifest itself at local, regional, and global levels over time, identifying its characteristics and causes, and the challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address the problem.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Science & Technical Subjects (6-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.6-8.2 Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; provide an accurate summary of the text distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.10 By the end of grade 10, read and comprehend science/technical texts in the grades 9-10 text complexity band independently and proficiently.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.4 Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 11-12 texts and topics.
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