It’s safety first for third-graders |

It’s safety first for third-graders

Moffat County Cooperative Extension Office offers second annual safety day

Third-grader Taquana Botkin is a little intimidated by horses, but now she knows how to act around them.

“You go in at kind of an angle,” she explained after a safety presentation Tuesday. “You don’t go behind him, because you’ll get kicked.”

Botkin and the rest of her peers in the third grade at East Elementary School were taught a slew of safety tips during an all-day Progressive Agriculture Safety Day camp at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. The CSU Moffat County Cooperative Extension Office sponsored the event.

Topics included safety guidelines for dogs, lawnmowers, all-terrain vehicles, railroads, electricity, ultraviolet rays, large equipment and large animals.

Third-grade teacher Julie Sperl said she thought the material was appropriate for students. Students between ages 8 and 9 are starting to use machines around the house and are gaining more freedoms.

“It’s kind of the age that parents are trying to teach children how to do things,” Sperl said. “We’re still having class, but it’s in a different environment.”

Although the program, in its second year, is labeled with an agriculture theme, many students don’t come from farming backgrounds. That’s why many of the presentations are focused more on safety for rural children, said parent Wayne Counts.

“All these kids are exposed to these dangers,” he said about the day’s lessons.

Third-grader Curtis Bowser said he learned that people can get shocked by electrical wires. In other presentations, children learned to wear eye protection and stay away from moving parts on a lawnmower. They also learned how to ride safely on an ATV and what to do if they are in a fire.

Jack Kelly with Moffat County Road and Bridge showed students a motor grader driver’s blind spots.

“If you are ever behind a vehicle, and you hear its back-up alarm, run to safety,” Kelly said.

Counts said he thought the day’s information spanned a wide portion of safety tips for children. One of the last presentations for his group was information about the dangers of the sun.

“We’re going to go learn about the sun and sunscreen, now,” Counts said. “That will be good, because they’re all sunburned right now.”

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