Implementing health and safety activities into a classroom curriculum teaches children how to make the right decisions throughout their lives, whether for eating healthy, combating peer pressure or maintaining street smarts. With creative thinking, teachers can offer a wide array of health and safety lessons and activities to youth.
The Cow That Destroyed Chicago
According to Education World, an online educational resource site, as of 2010 more than 100,000 children set fires each year. To recognise Fire Prevention Week, which is an annual event every October in the United States, incorporate an activity that correlates with fire safety, suggests Education World. Read aloud "The Cow That Destroyed Chicago," a short children's book about how a cow, at one time, was believed to have caused the 1871 Chicago fire. When you've finished reading the book to the students, lead a class discussion on the plot as well as the setting and overall facts of the Chicago fire. Ask students questions, such as "How did the fire fighters put out the fire?" or "Does fire spread quickly?" Encourage the children to talk about how playing with fire is dangerous.
To help your students understand the importance of being aware of their surroundings and avoiding peer pressure, give them an opportunity to act out specific situations in front of the class. Divide the children into small groups of two or three. Give each group a situation relating to safety issues, including talking to strangers or, if children are older, drinking and driving. Have each group act out their scenario by creating skits portraying what they should do in a particular situation. This activity gives children the opportunity to think critically, solve problems and interact with their peers.
Food and Activity Journals
To teach your students the importance of eating healthy and leading a physically fit lifestyle, have them create food and activity journals. Distribute a notebook or folder to each child, and encourage them to personalise their journals by decorating them. Designate a specific amount of time everyday for the students to record what they ate the previous day, as well as physical activities that they performed. Have them write in their journals over the course of a school year in order to determine if their eating and fitness habits improve.