Risk Assessment for Outdoor Activities

CfE Experiences and Outcomes

I am learning to assess and manage risk, to protect myself and others and to reduce the potential for harm when possible. HWB 2-16a

1. Connecting the Learning - Have a Carousel Brainstorming session to create ideas on the types of hazards that exist outside. Ask the class to imagine a typical Saturday playing outside, going to the shops, to the park or walking to a friend’s house, etc.

Divide the class into 4 groups and give each group a large piece of paper with one of the following headings – dangers from other people, natural dangers (hazards from animals, plants or weather), hazards from man-made objects, dangers from broken or vandalised objects.

Give each group about 2 minutes to think and write down their ideas then ask them to move to a different group and add to the list at that group and so on. Have a short time to feedback and read out some of the hazard ideas.
2. Sharing the Learning Outcomes-

• I can risk assess the types of activities I do outdoors.
• I can plan ways to avoid high risk activities
3. Active Learning - (Before this activity make signs that say, ‘Low Risk’, ‘Moderate Risk’ and ‘High Risk’ and pin in 3 corners of the class – they can be printed off from the Go Safe website.)

Remind the class that teachers have to assess risks for school trips. The types of hazards are usually put into categories; low risk (very unlikely to harm anyone), moderate risk (children should not be harmed if they follow the normal rules) or high risk (an activity that should not be attempted by children or only with expert help.) The consequence of a High Risk activity could be severe injury or death.

Play ‘Risk Runaround’ with the class. Read out a few examples of everyday hazards from the lists created by the class (in section 1) and ask the children to choose which type of risk by going to one of the signs (Low Risk, Medium Risk, High Risk.) Encourage them to make their own decision and not be swayed by others’ choices. Do the children find it difficult to agree on the degree of risk for any hazards?
4. Demonstrating Understanding - Use the Risk Assessment Game on the Go Safe website either as a class on the interactive whiteboard or working in pairs on individual PC’s. The children have to identify what is the hazard in the scenario, what degree of risk (low, moderate or high) and what could the consequences be? If time allows they could also talk about what would be a safer alternative.
5. Review and Recall - Remind the class about the Learning Outcomes and ask for examples of how they could use risk assessment in their everyday lives? For example, waiting for the Green Man at a pedestrian crossing or running across because no cars can be seen. Risk assessment is used unconsciously on many occasions each day but the focus of this lesson has been to try to make children more aware of risks and their consequences.
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