!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c-800wi|alt=Kellyransdell head shot|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Kellyransdell head shot|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b8d0a6c59e970c img-responsive!As a regional advisor to NFPA’s Public Education Division, I spend much of my time helping state educators develop the most educationally sound fire and life safety information they can for the public. One of the many rewarding parts of my job is when an educator finds a new approach for getting an audience enthusiastic about safety.
Captain Ben Hammond of the Sheridan Fire Department in Sheridan, Arkansas, has had that experience. His department conducts fire prevention assemblies throughout the year for approximately 1,400 students from grades Pre-K through 6. He told me that he recently showed "What’s That Sound?," NFPA’s fire safety video with Recess Monkey and Sparky the Fire Dog, for the first time to 200 third graders at Sheridan Intermediate School. “The results were awesome,” he said. “Watching the kids sing along and copy the moves of Recess Monkey was not only fun but satisfying. I know the message was being received.”
!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d-320wi|alt=Kelly blog photo 12.10.14|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Kelly blog photo 12.10.14|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb07c1d9b0970d img-responsive!Captain Hammond said a bonus was the response he got from Sheridan Intermediate School Principal Annette Neely. He said she didn’t know that Sparky's School House website materials are aligned to Common Core State Standards and was impressed.
As public educators we often provide messaging to groups who’ve heard it before. But as long as we have tools that help us present the message to the public creatively, we’ll have new ways to pique their curiosity, get them interested in learning more and help them make good choices when it comes to their safety.
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