207401 An interactive safety game for tweens

Monday, November 9, 2009

Suzanne Morton, MBA , Program Dept., Safe Kids Worldwide, Washington, DC
Background/Purpose: Many organizations run educational activities for children, but do not evaluate whether learning occurs. Also, unintentional injury prevention efforts are not often targeted at middle-school-aged children. The purpose of this project was to educate “tweens” (ages 10-13) about unintentional injury prevention.

Methods: Safe Kids USA developed an interactive safety game, the Gear Up Games, that local Safe Kids coalitions ran during Safe Kids Week 2008. The Games consisted of five activity stations. A pre-test and post-test were given right before and after the event. Formative evaluation was conducted through pilots with three Safe Kids coalitions. During Safe Kids Week, six coalitions turned in 468 students' tests for scoring. Using a paired t test, the mean scores on the pre- and post-tests were compared.

Results/Outcomes: The mean score on the questionnaire improved significantly from 58 out of 100 points (+/- 13.5) on the pre-test to 81 points (+/- 15.2) on the post test, a gain of 23 points, with a p value of 0.000 (95% confidence level). The mean score for five of the questions improved by 25 or more points.

Conclusions: Tweens do not know all key safety information and behaviors. They can learn this information through an interactive game as demonstrated by the improvement in knowledge score from 58 to 81 points. Limitations of this study were that it was a convenience sample with no control subjects, and knowledge was not measured over time. Some Spanish-speaking children had reading difficulties.

Learning Objectives:
List the top causes of unintentional injuries and death to children ages 10-14. Develop an interactive safety game for tweens with pre- and post-testing to measure knowledge gains.

Keywords: Injury Prevention, Children

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I managed the Safe Kids Week program for 3 years, developing many educational activities and communications materials for both parents and children. I continue to develop programming for Safe Kids Worldwide on fire/burn safety.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.