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Activities to Promote School Safety

Janelle Cox

 

October is School Safety Month. This is a great time to talk to your students about fire drills, bus safety, and the importance of communication.

Promote school safety in your classroom by trying the activities below.

The Fire Drill

We have all gone through the fire drill evacuation process a countless number of times. So we know that if we don't have our students properly prepared, this could lead to great misfortune. One very effective key to being prepared for a fire drill is to have a planning sheet listed with all students names, the exit route that is needed to get out of the building, and a list of the responsibilities (with names) that will help you exit quickly. This procedure needs to be reinforced and repeated until students can do it automatically. Being prepared for a fire drill will give your students an advantage that will save their lives.

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Properly prepare for fire drill by creating a fire drill planning sheet and post it by all exits. On this planning sheet, assign important responsibilities to mature students. Here a few suggestions on what to assign students:

 

 

  • "Brady" will close all windows.
  • "Reesa" will turn off all lights and power devices.
  • "Hudson" will take exit planning sheet.
  • "Stephanie" will close the door once everyone has exited.
  • "Seth" will walk ahead and open door to exit.

Fire Prevention at Home

Help students prepare for a fire at home by enlisting the help of their parents for this activity. Ask students to go home and create a fire safety plan with their parents. Have students draw their "safe place to meet" if a fire was to occur at home. Students should add a map detailing where to go, along with neighbors contact information in case of an emergency. Once students have completed this activity at home with their parents, encourage them to bring their completed pictures to school to share with their classmates.

School Bus Safety

According to research, more than 22 million children ride the bus to school each day. Studies show that riding the bus to and from school is the safest form of travel. With that said, unfortunately bus-related injuries still do occur. Many of these injuries happen when students are entering or exiting a bus. To help these incidents from ever happening, school bus rules should be taught at a very early age.

Try the following activities to help reinforce students' knowledge on bus safety. Tell the students to:

 

  • Be at the bus stop early. The bus driver may not see you if you are late and running to the bus, you could get hurt.
  • Wait for the bus far away from the road. If you are too close to the road you could get hit by a car, or even the bus.
  • When entering the bus sit down quickly. As soon as you enter the bus sit down. If you take too long the cars waiting for the bus may go around the bus, which can in turn cause an accident.
  • Stay seated at all times. Do not get up, stand up, or walk around. This is for your own safety.
  • Listen to the bus driver and bus aid. Make to listen to all directions from the bus driver and the bus aid. They are always looking out for your safety.
  • Exit the bus by using the rail. The bus stairs are very steep, use the guardrail to ensure your safe exit.
  • Wait for the bus driver's signal before crossing the street. Wait for the signal, and then look both ways before crossing the road.

Discuss Safety Rules

Tell students to:

Promote Bus Safety Rules

A fun way to reinforce bus safety rules is to have students create a bus safety poster. Divide students into groups of two and ask them to select one rule from the list above. Encourage students to be creative and design a poster that will help their classmates learn the bus safety rules.

Communication Can Save Your Life

Discuss how the way students act and react in a situation can save their life. Discuss different incidents with your students and have them tell you how they would communicate in that particular situation. For example, if there was a fire at school, how would they communicate with their teacher, classmates? What would they do? What if someone was to get hurt on the bus, how would they react in that situation? Use these questions as a springboard to get students thinking about how they communicate their wants and needs in a scary situation. By learning the "right way" to react and communicate in a crisis, can save their life.

Do you have any creative ideas or activities to help enforce school safety? Please share in the comment section below. We would love to hear your thoughts.

 Janelle Cox is an education writer who draws on her 15 years of professional experience in the education system. Janelle holds a Master's of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the Guide to Elementary Education for About.com, where she provides educational information and lesson plans for teachers across the United States.