An Instructional Program For Adolescent Activities

How to Write a Module, Module

Introduction - A Health Module is an instruction booklet on how to implement a program or an activity to benefit the health and safety of adolescents. It is not intended for the adolescent directly, but to help people who are working with adolescents. Although the described program or activity has proven successful in certain regions of West Virginia, modifications may be necessary to fit the local circumstances of an area.

The Health Modules are an outgrowth of the experience of the Adolescent Health Initiative, a program of the Office of Maternal and Child Health, West Virginia Bureau of Public Health. The eight Adolescent Health Specialists of the program have been working with schools, communities, and youth groups, and have gained valuable experience about what works, and how to get things done. The Module provides a format to capture these important experiences and enables them to be duplicated in other regions of the state.

This Health Module was created to explain the Module format and to encourage everyone to write a Module about what they have found to be successful while working with teens. It is our hope that the Module concept will be adopted by all youth organizations as a way to share programs and activities which improve the health and future of our youth.

Created by
J. Nelson Parker, Program Director
Adolescent Health Initiative
Office of Maternal and Child Health

The development, printing, and distribution of this educational material was funded in part by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau, ( Title V Social Security Act) , Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services.

A. Goals
The goals and related objectives are a very important part of the Module since they will give the reader a direct and focused description of the program or activity. Write the goals and objectives with the intent of helping the readers decide if the Module will fit their needs.

B. Group Size:
Programs or activities are most effective when they are written for a certain number of participants. Give the reader an idea of upper and lower limits of the suitable group size, and alternatives if the situation calls for a change.

C. Time Required:
Time requirements for the Module should be described in three ways.

  1. The lead time required to announce or publicize the Module's program or activity.
  2. The time required to set up, or stage the Module's program or activity.
  3. The time required to actually implement the Module's program or activity.

D. Materials Needed:
Create a list of all materials and equipment needed for the completion of the Module. For example: overhead projector, VCR, markers, handouts, newsprint work sheets, etc. Fully explain any special set-ups or requirements.

E. Physical Setting:
Describe the seating arrangements, lighting, and numbers of tables or chairs required for the comfort and security of the participants.

F. Resources:
List a bibliography of resource materials used in the Module as well as a list of reference materials that may be consulted for follow-up activities. These listings also may be made available in the form of a facilitator's guide or a participant handout.

G. Promotions:
Describe appropriate promotion efforts necessary for the Module's program or activity. They are often the key to the Module's success. Provide the reader with examples of local newspaper articles, letters to participants, brochures etc. as attachments to the back of the Module

H. Evaluation:
Provide an appropriate evaluation instrument both for the program or activity described in the Module, and for the evaluation of the facilitator. The evaluation should reflect the expectations or goals of the program, the facilitator and the participants

I. Lessons Learned:
Include all the key points and suggestions which will help the reader be successful in the completion of the Module. Since these Modules have been field tested on numerous occasions, the Lessons Learned will assist the reader in avoiding problems when implementing the Module. Some examples include: setting target dates far enough in advance to adequately insure participation by facilitator and participants; provision of on-site day care for participants; making sure support personnel are available for special needs


1. Preparation and Pre-planning
Prepare a sequential plan of all steps necessary to complete the Module. Restate the necessary Time Requirements (Section C) and indicate how the program or activity should progress.

2. Volunteer Group Activities
Explain the responsibilities that may be carried out by volunteer groups. Some examples may be the plans for refreshments, lunches, name tags, room signs, brochure development, news releases, guides for facilitator, and posters. They may also participate in duplicating and collating necessary letters and handouts. The duties should be listed within a time sequence.

3. Activities
This is where the writer describes the Module's program or activity in detail. This is the "HOW-TO SECTION" and should include: instructions on introducing the topic, the presentation of the activity or program, how to distribute needed materials, and how the follow-up activities connect the activity with the goals and expectations of the Module. List any open ended questions that may stimulate discussions or participation. Close this section with instructions on how to use the evaluation instrument provided in the Module.

4. Post Activities
Provide examples of review questions for both the facilitator and the participants to assist in any follow up sessions. As attachments to the Module, provide examples of thank you letters written to facilitators, their employers, and all community sponsors. Suggest criteria to justify repeating the program or activity.

5. Attachments
Create a table of contents of all attachments, samples, and a possible bibliography that are provided at the back of the Module.

Include copies of actual documents, or prepared examples in order to assist the reader in implementing the program or activity.