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Oral Health Education Guide for Grade 1

3 children facing forward, 2 are holding up a drawing.

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Links to Curriculum Expectation Table

Specific expectation numbers per learning block and strand have been identified based on their relevancy to oral health.

Learning Block Strand Specific Expectation #
Language Oral
1.1, 1.4
1.1, 1.3, 1.6
1.2, 2.1, 3.2
Mathematics Number Sense and Numeration Quantity Relationships
Health and Physical Education Healthy Living C2.2, C3.1, C3.2
Science and Technology Understanding Life Systems 2.5, 3.3
Social Studies Heritage and Citizenship Knowledge and Understanding

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Share stories related to oral health, dental visits and care for the teeth. Students can respond to questions or retell the point of the story and demonstrate an understanding of the information.

  1. Boyd, Nicole (2008). Let’s Brush Our Teeth. The Rosen Publishing Group, Incorporated.
  2. Klein, A. F. (2005). Max Goes To the Dentist. Picture Window Books.
  3. Berenstain, S., & Berenstain, J. (1998). The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist. Random House.


Using a variety of strategies and resources (e.g., ask questions to identify personal experiences, and prior knowledge, or brainstorm ideas with the class) write a narrative using oral health themed subject matter.

  1. Parts of the Tooth External Link

Write short texts using oral health as the main theme and use a few simple forms (e.g., a recount of personally significant experiences, topics of interest, and “How to” stories).


Collection of rhymes, songs, charts, and stories that link oral health information with a variety of different literary texts and informational texts.

  1. Langreuter, J., & Sobat, V. (1997). Little Bear Brushes His Teeth. Millbrook Press.
  2. Ricci, Christine (2005). Show me Your Smile! A Visit to the Dentist (Dora the Explorer). Simon Spotlight.

Identify a few reading comprehension strategies and have students share their oral health knowledge by brainstorming about the cover, title, or topic. How do they visualize a character or scene?

  1. Van Leeuwen, J. (2008). Amanda Pig and the Wiggly Tooth. USA: Penguin Group Inc.
  2. Lane, J. (2007). The Magic School Bus and the Missing Tooth. Cartwheel Books.
  3. Dr. Seuss (2000). The Tooth Book. Random House Children’s Books.

Encourage students to extend their understanding of the text by connecting the ideas in it and relate the content of the story, song or activity to personal experiences or knowledge of oral health and the mouth.

  1. Minarik, E. H. (2002). Little Bear's Loose Tooth. HarperCollins Publishers.
  2. Hall, K. (2004). The Tooth Fairy. Scholastic.
  3. Adler, D. A. (1999). Young Cam Jansen and the Lost Tooth. USA: Penguin Group Inc.
  4. How I Lost My Tooth Worksheet External Link

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Humans have 2 sets of teeth: primary and permanent. Children with a complete set of teeth have 20 primary or deciduous teeth that begin to emerge at around 6 months of age, but develop well before birth. Adults with a complete set of teeth have 32 teeth.

  1. Count and Colour Activity Sheet External Link
  2. Facts about Teeth – Learning to Count External Link
  3. Primary Teeth – Learning to Count External Link

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Health & Physical Education

Healthy Living

Know and recognize the need to develop healthy eating habits and a relationship with oral health.

  1. What Keeps Your Mouth Healthy External Link

Help students understand how to stay safe and avoid injuries to themselves and others in a variety of situations (e.g., wearing mouthguards while playing sports or wearing a helmet when biking, skating, or skateboarding).

  1. Mouthguard – Protection During Physical Activity External Link
  2. Mouthguard Colouring Sheet External Link

Have students identify habits and behaviours (e.g., chewing on hard objects, excessive sugar consumption, tobacco usage) that can have a harmful effect on the mouth, and explain how students can be encouraged to adopt healthier alternatives.

Chewing on hard objects:

Chewing on ice cubes, pencils and pens, or even hard candy can chip or crack your teeth. Teeth are for chewing food only!

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Science & Technology

Life Systems

Investigate characteristics of the mouth and explain how those characteristics function (e.g., our tongue has bumps that help us to determine if our food is too hot, too cold, or tastes bad).

  1. Functions of the Mouth – Comic Strip External LinkAdobe Portable Document Format (PDF)
  2. Parts of the Mouth External LinkAdobe Portable Document Format (PDF)

Did you know?

The outer layer of our teeth, the enamel, is the hardest substance in the human body.

The part of the tooth you see is called the crown. The rounded high parts of the back teeth are cusps. The hard white outer covering of the tooth is the enamel. Below the gum line, holding the tooth in the jawbone is the root of the tooth. You can’t see the roots. The inner portions of the tooth consist of the dentin, a bone like tissue, and the pulp. The pulp is like a house for the nerves and blood vessels at the center of the crown and root.

Teeth have different shapes for different jobs. For example, when you eat, the upper teeth work together with the lower teeth of the same shape to bite, chew, and tear food.

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Social Studies

Heritage & Citizenship

Ask students to identify significant events in their lives related to their teeth (e.g., their first trip to the dentist or a new tooth).

  1. Ricci, Christine (2005). Show me Your Smile! A Visit to the Dentist (Dora the Explorer). Simon Spotlight.
  2. Berenstain, S., & Berenstain, J. (1998). The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist. Random House.
  3. Adler, D. A. (1999). Young Cam Jansen and the Lost Tooth. USA: Penguin Group Inc.
  4. Significant Event – Visiting the Dentist External Link

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Healthy, Happy Teeth

(sing to the tune of Old MacDonald)

Brush your teeth and floss them too,
For healthy, happy teeth.
Drink and eat foods good for you,
For healthy, happy teeth!
With a brush, brush here,
And a floss, floss there,
Here a brush, there a floss,
Day and night a brush and floss!
See your dentist every year,
For healthy, happy teeth!

Brushing My Teeth Poem

Up like the flowers, down like the rain,
Back and forth like a choo-choo train.

Get more songs External Link

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  • Based on The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1-8.
  • Created by Halton Region Health Department, in consultation with the HCDSB and the HDSB.