Last month the Howland Fire Department held two three-day sessions in safety for preschool children in the community.
The program, ''Safety Town,'' was designed to teach youngsters how to be safe at home, at school and at play.
The program attempted to cover every aspect of a young child's life that might help them avoid injury in all possible scenarios, including water safety, contact with potential poisons as well as dealing with strangers and gun safety. Children learned safety procedures through interactive involvement under the guidance of teachers, firefighters, police officers and trained volunteers.
Gloria Beck from the Howland Fire Department, left, instructs Luke Ferguson, 5, and Colin Hyde-Mitchelly, 5, both of Howland, on looking both ways before crossing the street. Safety Town, a realistic child-size town, was a hands-on safety education program for preschool children held last month at Howland Springs and Howland Glen Schools. The program was devised to teach children how to be safe at home, school and at play.
Cassi Boyle, 5, of Howland, rides her bike through the Safety Town course held Aug. 11 in Howland. During the two-part, two-week event, children were taught how to keep themselves safe, including instruction as pedestrians; riding the school bus, dealing with fires; how to call 9-1-1; the proper use of seat belts; pet, water, poison and fire safety; calling 9-1-1; bike safety; dealing with strangers; and gun safety. Each 12-hour course concluded with a graduation ceremony.
''We got great feedback from the parents,'' said Inspector Kelly McGilton of the Howland Fire Department. ''They told us they hope we do it again next year.''
Parents said their kids went home and even corrected them on matters of safety, McGilton said.
The program, which was funded by a grant, consisted of a 12-hour course for children ages 4 and 5 in two sessions each at Howland Springs School and Howland Glen School. At the end of each session, a graduation ceremony was held that included food, clowns and fun for the 75 children attending.
The committee is planning to meet this month to discuss plans for next year's program, McGilton said.