Safe Practices and Equipment
The student is expected to demonstrate safe practices and the use of safety equipment as described in the Texas Safety Standards during classroom and outdoor investigations.
The student conducts classroom and outdoor investigations following home and school safety procedures and environmentally appropriate and ethical practices.
Science and Safety, It’s Elementary: Council of State Science Supervisors (PDF) - A handy, concise reference for elementary teachers of science, with basic guidelines for safe practices and facilities, and answers to commonly asked questions about science teaching and safety.
Science Safety in Elementary Schools: BioEd Online (video) - Online presentation covering classroom safety practices, particularly during students’ science investigations. Includes information about key safety equipment and strategies for setting up a safety object wall.
Science Safety Scene: BioEd Online (PDF) - Students carefully observe Mr. Dan Gerous’ science classroom, identify unsafe situations and behaviors, and discuss proper safety practices.
Additional information about classroom safety and specific instructions for the Science Safety Scene activity are provided in the video below (Click on the “Safety First” chapter link and follow the lesson directions in the video.)
- Supporting Lessons
- Assessment Ideas
- Literature Connections
- Additional Resources
Science Safety Rules: Science Spot (PDF) - Students read a brief story about the antics of SpongeBob Squarepants and his friends, identify the safety rules being broken, and learn the guidelines for proper safety in science class.
Elaboration Lessons and Extensions
Lab Safety Posters: Curriculum-Science (website) - Have student groups create posters illustrating different safety rules. This website provides links to activity guidelines, a list of possible safety issues, and sample, with commentary about each poster’s strengths and weaknesses.
Have each student write a safety scenario in his/her journal, and include illustrations, if desired. Scenarios should feature a fictional character involved in at least 10 unsafe laboratory practices. For example, a student might write about Mickey Mouse eating a piece of cheese while doing an investigation in the lab.
School Safety, Rivera, Sheila (ISBN-13: 978-0822568225)
Lessons in Science Safety with Max Axiom, Super Scientist. Adamson, Thomas (ISBN-13: 978-0736878876)
Safe Not Sorry! Chemical Safety Activity Handbook. Sarquis, Mickey (ISBN-13: 978-1883822521)
The Everything Kids' Science Experiments Book. Robinson, Tom (ISBN-13: 978-1580625579)
Exploring Safely, A Guide for Elementary Teachers: National Science Teachers Association (PDF) - Information to help your classes approach inquiry science and laboratory activities in the safest way possible. Use the safety contract on page 5 with your students.
Student Lab Safety Worksheet: McGraw Hill (DOC) – Download a safety worksheet to guide student thinking about safety concerns before conducting an investigation.
The Safety Song: Teacher Tube (video) - This video uses puppets and music to reinforce safe science behaviors. It was created for advanced laboratories, but can be used with elementary students.
Lab Safety: Educational Rap (website) - Use a “rap” song to reinforce safe practices in the science lab. An audio version of the rap can be downloaded for a small fee; the lyrics are available free of charge.