I'm Interested in Cool DRR Learning Stuff

School Safety

Meet Iggy.  Iggy is a Banded Fijian Iguana and is a representative for the Fiji National Disaster Management Office.  Iggy was developed by Health Songs International for Save the Children Fiji and features in a film along with some other animated friends, that teaches children about Emergency and Safety Procedures for School.  For the complete film, follow the links below.

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I think we’d all agree that the phrase ‘Standard Operating Procedures for School Safety’ doesn’t exactly conjure up feelings of excitement in most of us, however we’d probably also all agree that  having a working knowledge of these safety procedures can mean the difference between life and death.  Because of this it’s of the utmost importance that when developing materials to teach DRR, we understand the principles of how to grab and hold children’s attention.

From the outset we decided that we wanted children to be emotionally involved with the key messages and so excited that they wanted to share what they learned with other, friends and family.  So, we got our heads together with Save the Children DRR staff and Iggy and his friends are the result.

The content of the film draws from evidence-based, consensus-based action-oriented key messages for risk reduction and safety. The feel of the film however is warm, familiar, light, friendly and caring. To make the film more lesson (and teacher) friendly, we divided it into 7 sections.  Each section explains to children how to prepare for and how to safe during a specific incident.


Part 1.  Children’s Rights.

Part 4.  Fire Safety.

Part 7.  Lockdown & Safe Family Reunification

Part 2. SOPs.

Part 5.  Earthquake.

Part 3.  Building Evacuation.

Part 6.  Storms & Floods.

Stay Safe Malawi is a project developed by Health Songs International for UNDP Malawi to help Malawi children, in and out of school, understand Disaster Risk Management and how they can play their part in reducing risk caused by disasters.

The aim of the project was to discover the learning pathways for Malawi children and to develop learning strategies that could exploit those learning pathways so that Malawi children could learn in a way that was most suited to their needs. 

As a result of our research, we developed a set of 24 illustrations covering the four main disasters experienced by Malawi children.  The illustrations include scenes related to those disaster scenarios in their before, during and after states. 

We then developed a set of 24 flashcards using the illustrations on the front and a set of gamified activities on the reverse side.  These cards are large enough to be seen from a distance and make for a simple and fun classroom-style lesson.  We understand how busy teachers can be, therefore we prepared lessons that take only a few minutes to organise.

Board Game
The second innovation we developed was a DRM board game.  This game was more suited to high school aged children.  The game is a trail game and features the 24 illustration, a “how to play” instruction booklet and a quick information reference booklet to assist the learning process.

The game sees children form two (2) teams which must each throw a wooden token into a circle on the board which is divided into sections.  The sections include a number which indicates how many spaces they will move on the board and a presentation style i.e. Drama, Song, Dance.  Once the two teams have thrown their counter and moved forward on the board, they will find that there is information about DRM/DRR on the board, in the space where they move to. Both teams must go outside for two (2) minutes only and prepare their presentation.  Once the two minutes is up they will return and perform before the class.  A vote is then taken and the team that gets the biggest shout is the winner of that round.  They repeat this until one team is the first to cross the finish line.

We produced 3000 sets of flashcards and 3000 board games (1400 x 1000mm) printed on PVC banner material and delivered them to Malawi

A song about the dangers of floodwaters
Floods are a major contributor to the loss of life in Malawi and as usual, children are the most vulnerable.  This song, produced in six (6) languages, details the things to do and things not to do in order to reduce risk.  The song is based on the universal floodwater safety theme, ‘Turn around don’t drown’ but with a real Malawi groove to it.  The song was written by Rob Greaney from Health Songs International and arranged, translated and produced in Malawi by Faith Mussah a well-known and much-loved recording artist.   This songs and its derivatives have been widely broadcast in Malawi.