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Fire Prevention Education

Grand Isle School is a welcoming community where every family and staff member is invested in our students. We recognize and celebrate the whole child. We provide an equal opportunity and the right supports so all students and adults are successful. We practice positive and collaborative teaming and teaching throughout the school.

Fire Prevention • Monday, October 16th

Fire Prevention Education
By Jessica Bachand

From a young age, children are taught that there are people in our community that are always there to help. They learn about community heroes and that if there is a fire or an unsafe situation, firefighters and police officers will be there. We normally only get to meet these men and women when there is a state of emergency. However, in that time our brains are often not thinking clearly - the scary can become scarier and the unknown can be petrifying. This is one of the reasons why many children hide when firefighters come to the rescue.

It is so important that everyone, especially our students and children, become familiar with these community heroes in a safe and positive environment. This allows us to build positive relationships, not only with the people we will encounter, but also what they will be wearing and the sounds that they will be making.

On Thursday, October 12, some students at Grand Isle Elementary had an opportunity to build these positive relationships when K-2 invited Sheriff Jason Ziter to come talk. Jason Ziter not only works at Grand Isle County Sheriff Department, but is also a firefighter in Essex. Geared up in his police uniform, Ziter first talked about a day in the life of a police officer. We talked about car safety and the importance of being safe on the bus. Students inquired about his vest and Ziter gladly explained the tools that he carries with him.

Jason Ziter then swapped roles and explained his experience as a firefighter with the help from our Principal Eric Arnzen. Students watched the transformation from principal to firefighter and back to principal again, with Ziter explaining each piece of clothing that Arnzen put on. Jason explained that his gear is similar to what the students wear in the winter: boots, ski pants, a jacket, hat, and gloves. The main difference is that his gear is meant to keep the heat out instead of holding the heat in. When Sheriff Ziter was talking about his oxygen mask, Principal Arnzen exclaimed “Luke, I am your father!” in his very best Darth Vader voice. This movie reference was able to ease some of the nerves cause by the sound of his voice and breathing, and instead connected it to a fun memory. By familiarizing these students with each piece of his police and firefighting gear, Ziter helped to build those positive experiences and eliminate some of the unknown that they may face in an emergency.

October is fire safety month, making it a wonderful time to emphasize fire safety and prevention. Jason Ziter was able to do so in a short amount of time this Thursday morning. However, this is not the extent of what he has done for our school. Students at Grand Isle Elementary School are very lucky to have a long-standing relationship with Sheriff Jason. His frequent school visits and bus safety talks have allowed him to become a familiar and friendly face in our community.

Posted by eriarnz@gisu.org on 2017-10-16


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