An Environmental Health Activity Booklet for First Nations Teens - Live, play and learn!

Hi, my name is Cory. I love listening to different types of music. I'm learning to play guitar and I quite enjoy it!

Introduction

When most people think of the environment, they think of nature, but really the environment is anywhere you are.  It's where you live, where you play, and where you learn.  Your environment is indoors, outdoors and even under your bed!

Sometimes contaminants such as lead, pesticides and other chemicals can get in the environment and make people sick. This activity website will show you lots of ways to make your home and community a clean and safe place for you and your friends.

Lead

Get the lead out!

Lead is a metal found naturally in the earth's crust and can be added to certain products.  There are many ways lead can get into your home - from the soil on the bottom of your shoes, from your drinking water, old paint and dust to name a few. Exposure to lead can make you feel sick.

Luckily the effects from lead exposure are preventable, so make sure you do as much as possible to keep lead out of your house. Take off your shoes, wash your hands and mop and dust floors, walls, ceilings, windows regularly.

Game: Find out where lead could be hiding! Print out the following objects and circle the 11 places where lead could be found.

Indoor Air

Breathe easy!

We usually think of air pollution as being outdoors, but the air in your home could also be polluted. Indoor air pollution can come from tobacco smoke, mould and gases like carbon monoxide.

Keeping the air clean at home is important.

Game: Print out this word search grid, and find these hidden words related to indoor air! The words could be up, down, left and right so look carefully! Then use the leftover letters to spell out the Secret Word.

Drinking Water

Water works

All plants and animals, including people, have to drink water. If they don't drink clean water, they will get sick. But sometimes our water gets bacteria and chemicals in it. There are small things you can do to protect your drinking water in a big way!

  • Well water should be tested for bacteria at least once a year.
  • If your community receives a Boil Water Advisory/Order, you must boil any water you use for drinking, cooking, making ice cubes, washing food, and brushing your teeth. This should be a rolling boil for at least one minute.
  • Do not drink water directly from a rubber hose, especially if the hose has been in the sun all day. The rubber can break down and leak toxic chemicals.

Game: Print out the two following images and circle 7 differences. Don't miss anything, watch carefully!

Pesticides

What's bugging you?

Pesticides are substances used to prevent, destroy or repel pests. However sometimes pesticides can be very harmful to people and pets, especially if they are not used correctly. It's important to store pesticides properly and follow the instructions carefully.

Fruits and vegetables you buy at the store may have some pesticides on them. This is why you should always wash them.

Game: A crossword puzzle all about pesticides! Print out the crossword and fill in the answers to the questions across and down.

 

Chemical Products

Read the label!

Product labels often use signal words to show how toxic or hazardous a product can be. The words are: Caution, Danger, and Extreme Danger. Products can also use warning symbols.

Make sure you know what the warning symbols mean so there are no accidents. You and your family need to be careful not to come in contact with the chemicals!

Game: Print out the following words and unscramble them! Read the clues carefully.

Noise

What did you say?

Sound is what you hear; noise can be unwanted sounds that are unpleasant to the listener. What is a pleasing sound to one person may be a very annoying noise to another. Either way, loud noise or sound can seriously damage your hearing if you are exposed to it long enough.

Game: Print out the questions, use the decoder key to Crack the Code and reveal the mystery answer.

 

Test Your Knowledge!

Congratulations! You are now well on your way to making your home and community a clean and safe place for you and your friends to live, play and learn.

Now it's time to show off all the good stuff you know. Select the best answer from the choices for each question.

1. On the label of a product, what does a skull and cross bones mean?

  1. Warning, pirates ahead!
  2. The product is poisonous.
  3. Not sure or don't know.

2. Your dad just finished changing the oil in his car. What should he do with the used oil?

  1. Pour it back into an empty motor oil container and put it in the trash.
  2. Pour it back into an empty motor oil container and recycle it.
  3. Pour it on the ground.
  4. Empty it into an outside drain.
  5. Not sure or don't know.

3. Where could lead be found?

  1. Fishing sinkers.
  2. At the local lead store.
  3. In dust and flakes from old paint.
  4. A & C.
  5. Not sure or don't know.

4. Why should you never drink water directly from a hose?

  1. Someone might play a prank and squirt you with it.
  2. If you put the hose in your mouth, water might shoot out of your ears.
  3. The rubber from the hose may contaminate the water, especially when it has been heated by the sun.
  4. Not sure or don't know.

5. What harmful gas can come from a gas furnace that is not working well?

  1. Helium.
  2. Carbon Monoxide.
  3. Swamp Gas.
  4. Unleaded Gas.
  5. Not sure or don't know.

6. What should I do to prevent mould from getting in the house?

  1. Tell an adult if you find any water damage.
  2. When showering make sure you turn on a fan or open a window.
  3. Never take a shower or bath again.
  4. A & B.
  5. Not sure or don't know.

What I Can Do?

  • I can always read the label first before using any household product.
  • I can check out other ways of getting rid of pests without using pesticides.
  • I can wash my hands before eating.
  • I can take my shoes off before I enter the house.
  • I can let the water run until it's cold.
  • I can make sure I recognize all warning symbols.
  • I can wash fruits and vegetables before I eat them.
  • During a boil water advisory, I can bring all drinking water to a rolling boil for 1 minute.
  • I can lower the volume on my headphones and ear buds.
  • I can keep my indoor air clean by vacuuming or dusting with a wet rag.

Download the list!

You can check your answers to the activities here.

ISBN: 978-1-100-17880-6
Catalogue No.: H34-218/5-2011E
HC Publication No.: 11028

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