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Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools – Evidence Sheet sample essay

Risk Assessment

What is a Hazard? How could you minimise it?

(See attached mind map)

Complete and attach 2 risk assessments one carried out as a class exercise the other one based on your class room / playground/ school hall/ school trip…

Why is it important to take a balanced approach to risk management?

It is important for all those who work with children and young people to take a balanced approach to risk management. Children should learn to be able to take some risks, and most activities will carry some element of danger. Many educationalists now believe that the current tendency for many parents to keep their children indoors and take them everywhere in the car has negative effects and is overprotective, as it does not allow them to explore and discover the world for themselves or assess elements of risk. If children’s experiences are limited due to adult’s anxieties, it is likely that they will find it difficult to assess and manage risk when they become adults. When children are given more independence, they are more likely to grow confidence – they should be encouraged to think about risks which may arise and act accordingly.

In school, while it is important and to be vigilant and avoid excessive risk taking, we can help pupils to think about risks in the environment and what we can do to avoid them. Although you are making sure that learning environments in which pupils can work and play are safe places, you can also encourage them to think about why certain courses of action, such as playing football close to other pupils, may not be sensible. As pupils grow older, they should have more opportunities, both in school and through extra curricular activities, to consider how their decisions will impact on themselves and others. They should also have opportunities to discuss potential risks and problems with one another and with adults.

A balanced approach to risk management means:
Taking into account the child or young person’s age, needs and abilities Avoid excessive risk taking
Not being excessively risk adverse
Recognising the importance of risk and challenge to children’s and young people’s development

(See also attached mind map)

Give 2 examples of the ways you support children to assess and manage risk for themselves

(this can be a witness testimony or written as a personal statement backed up with a witness signature)

Children balancing on two legs of a chair.

I would ask why I ask them to sit correctly with all four legs of the chair on the floor. I would then ask what could happen if they carry on balancing on two chair legs, if they say I don’t know I would then explain the following:

1. So they don’t fall off and hurt themselves or others.

2. Because it weakens the chair legs.

3. Because if someone is balancing forwards the chair legs are sticking out and it then becomes a trip hazard for anyone else walking around the classroom. Then I would ask what they would like to do, they sit correctly with all four chairs legs on the floor.

Talking through the procedure of a fire drill.

I have asked the children if they know what to do in a fire drill practise and most of them know exactly what to do. It important for children to talk through the reasons for this safety requirement. These are the things some of the children told me:

1. Listen carefully to directions

2. Quietly line up

3. Walk carefully out the building to their designated safety point

4. Wait with their teacher until its safe to return

Give an example of how you support children to take responsibility for their own:


Children at Fallings Park Primary School are encouraged to go to first aid at lunchtimes if they have an accident especially if they bang their head sometimes children don’t like going but talking through the reasons why they should go generally encourage them to go straight away.

Physical Safety

Children at Fallings Park Primary School are reminded about the dangers of climbing on tables etc. and what could happen if they fall i.e. bang their heads. Children often stop what they are doing as this encourages of what can happen.


Children at Fallings Park Primary School are only allowed to go home with named adults on the list of consent of who can collect children.

Fire Safety

Children at Fallings Park Primary School have regular fire drills so they know what to do in a real fire if one was to ever happen.

Food Safety

Children are encouraged to wash hands before eating and after any lessons which are a little messy i.e. art/science. Then you could explain why and what sort of germs which are harmful and could make them ill.

Personal Safety

Be aware of strangers explain the dangers of strangers to them and I would also explain that “say no if someone tries to touch me or treat me in a way that makes me feel scared, uncomfortable or confused.

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