How to Teach Basic First Aid to Kids

by Kathryn Rateliff Barr
Adult helping child apply bandaid

Children can learn basic first aid and successfully use the skills to care for themselves or others. The skills teachers can cover in a first aid unit may include treating of wounds, providing CPR, dealing with body fluids and preventing heat distress. Several websites include ideas you can use to create a first aid unit or prepare first aid lessons for elementary school students. Additional resources include worksheets, books and videos, and ideas from learning centers.

Describe basic first aid techniques and the importance of knowing them. Include these ideas on worksheets or an interactive whiteboard lesson. Allow students to discuss the techniques in small groups.

Watch videos that demonstrate first aid techniques like wound cleaning and bandaging, direct pressure to stop bleeding and CPR. You might invite a nurse, firefighter or first responder to speak to the class about first aid and CPR use. Allow the students to ask questions and refine their understanding of first aid and CPR techniques.

Explore the contents of a first aid kid. Describe each item and explain its purpose. Invite the students to handle the items and use them in a first aid demonstration. Provide the students with a list of supplies and invite them to create a first aid kit for their home.

Invite students to list circumstances when they might need to administer first aid. Make a list of the suggestions and have each student choose one situation and write an essay on how she would respond. Display some of the essays on the bulletin board.

Provide each student with a copy of a basic first aid manual. Invite students to create posters or other visual projects that explain basic first aid techniques and reminders. Allow the students to create a classroom display of the material and share it with other classes or students, as appropriate.

Take a virtual field trip to a local clinic or hospital emergency room. Allow the students to observe how medical professionals handle emergencies. Discuss triage techniques and why they're used. Make a list of the kinds of incidents that sent the patients in for treatment.

Discuss safety tips and accident prevention information that may eliminate the need for a trip to the emergency room. Make a list of activities that students should avoid as unsafe. Discuss activities that should be accompanied with safety measures like wearing helmets when riding a bicycle or motorcycle. Create a list of safety tips students can use and distribute that can reduce the need for first aid intervention.

About the Author

Rev. Kathryn Rateliff Barr has taught birth, parenting, vaccinations and alternative medicine classes since 1994. She is a pastoral family counselor and has parented birth, step, adopted and foster children. She holds bachelor's degrees in English and history from Centenary College of Louisiana. Studies include midwifery, naturopathy and other alternative therapies.

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