Nurses week ideas

Written by hannah wahlig
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Nurses week ideas
Nurses Week celebrates the critical support these medical professionals provide to doctors and patients. (nurse on duty image by Pix by Marti from

Nurses provide life-saving services to patients every day, often without the glory and recognition given to doctors or surgeons. Celebrate nurses with a variety of Nurses Week activities and recognitions designed to demonstrate appreciation for the difficult and critical work they do. From formal workplace celebrations to personal gifts or notes for the special nurse in your life, there are many ways to express your gratitude during this official celebration and throughout the year.

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Nurse Appreciation

Nurse appreciation activities are an ideal way for hospitals, schools and care centres to show nurses how important they are to the team. Invite several massage therapists to set up massage tables and chairs in a secluded common area. Throughout the day, invite nurses to indulge in a free 15- or 30-minute session as a way of helping them relax.

Host an award breakfast before a shift. Set up a buffet table with sweet pastries, hot coffee and an elaborate display of fresh fruit. During breakfast, have an administrator present appreciation awards for nurses who go above and beyond their call of duty, as well as some fun categories. Award categories can include the best bedside manner, the longest stretch of time without an absence and most festive scrubs. For a more serious event, host a candlelight gathering on the grounds of a local hospital or school to celebrate the estimated 2.9 million nurses currently employed in the United States. Ask former patients, nursing students and doctors to read small letters of thanks to the nurses who have made a difference in their lives.

Nursing Education

Bring Nurses Week into school classrooms by creating a range of nurse-related lesson plans or activities. In elementary grades, host an in-class read-aloud from the works of or about Florence Nightingale, a nurse who was essential in promoting sanitary standards in the nursing profession. Ask students to create posters of hospital conditions before and after Nightingale's influence. Older students can create visual historic timelines that trace the history of nursing, including such milestones as the first nursing schools of the 19th century and the founding of the American Nurses Association. Turn Nurses Week into a research project for high school students, in which groups of students select a prominent nurse throughout history and present research sketches about her impact on the nursing profession; Nightingale, Clara Barton and Jensey Snow are possible research subjects.

Nurse Activities

Interactive and hands-on nursing-related activities are fun ways to celebrate Nurses Week. Combine learning objectives with a nursing theme to create clever children's activities. For example, ask students to write a poem about nursing or the nurses in their lives. Younger children may begin with an acrostic poem, in which each line of the poem begins with the letters that spell "nurse." Older children can experiment with a variety of rhyming schemes or poem formats. Publish the poems in a newsletter or submit them to a newspaper contest for publication.

Shake up the typical nursing schedule by incorporating playful activities into professional development for nurses. For example, set up teams of nurses to compete in a nursing skills relay race made up of a variety of nursing tasks, such as rinsing a bed pan, measuring fake medication doses and checking vital signs. For a long-term activity, invite nurses to submit designs or patterns for new scrubs; post the finalists in a common area and ask other nurses to vote for their favourite designs. Award the winner with a gift token to a spa.

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