Elementary Science

Making your Classroom as Safe as Possible

My name is Micaela Nunez and I am currently a junior attending Saint Peter's University. I hope to one day become a teacher and help aid students in their learning trajectory. I was wondering if anyone could share tips on how to make a classroom safe for all students. What are some safety measures one should take before performing a science experiment?

Micaela Nunez
Micaela Nunez
1480 Activity Points

I am also a preservice teacher, so I am following this! One thing that I've learned is to always review the rules and expectations beforehand so that students know what is expected of them, and that it is NOT time to mess around when we have materials out. Another thing might be wearing Personal Protective Equipment if necessary. 

Emma Scheidler
Emma Scheidler
1905 Activity Points

Hi Michaela, 

You ask a very good question and I think that Emma makes a good point. Students need to know prior to lab what lab expectations are. Many teachers start the year with lab safety so that they can teach students the location of the lab safety equipment in the room and what safety guidelines they should follow with every laboratory.  General lab safety guidelines might include: 

1) Always wear eye safety.

2) Always know the location of the safety equipment.

3) Always keep your area neat.

4) Always be careful with open flames.

5) Always leave your lab area and dishes cleaner than you found it. 

In addition to goggles, it might be important to have students wear a lab coat or apron.  I would say students have an attitude change when they are wearing personal protective equipment.  They tend to take the laboratory more seriously.  It is important to highlight any additional safety concerns that students should follow with each activity. 

Ruth Hutson
Ruth Hutson
63530 Activity Points

Michaela, 

I agree with Emma on making sure students know rules and expectations no matter what grade they're in. I am still told expectations during labs, and I'm a senior in college. Making sure they know where the eyewash station is, chemical shower, exits, and saftey goggles are, or even where lab coats are if those are needed. In high school I kept closed toed shoes in my science room in case I wasn't wearing them that day. I think it's a really good idea to do for elementary schoolers. They also need to know the dangers of certain chemicals, so they take the proper precautions. 

Lauren Gootee
Lauren Gootee
1615 Activity Points

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