Everything Teachers and Parents Need to Know About Swine Flu

RESTON, VA – Parents, teachers, and school officials are anxiously awaiting the expected return this fall of the H1N1 virus, known as Swine Flu. Declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the virus may prove a significant problem to schools and families across the country.


To help both teachers and parents prepare for swine flu, TeachersFirst.com has created a unique online resource at http://www.teachersfirst.com/content/spectopics/swineflu.cfm. The site contains links to extensive information on the nature, prevention, and management of the disease. Teacher-oriented information includes recommendations for appropriate grade level and suggestions for use in the classroom; some resources are also designed specifically for home use.


Nonprofit TeachersFirst (www.TeachersFirst.com), now in its twelfth year, is one of the web’s leading sites for teachers. Thousands of teachers from more than 50 countries visit the site regularly; they use resources that have been reviewed and approved by master teachers, and are organized by grade and subject. The service also plays an active role in helping teachers understand technology and use it productively.


The Source for Learning (SFL—www.SourceForLearning.org) is TeachersFirst’s parent organization. Steven J. Gorski, SFL’s CEO and President, said, “The swine flu resource page gives accurate, timely, and age-appropriate information so students, teachers, and parents know what they can do to stay healthy and limit the spread of the virus. It’s an example of one way we help teachers and students—and it shows how we combine technology and class activities to provide a learning experience.”


An example of the professional context and teaching ideas provided by TeachersFirst editors is this suggestion for ways students can learn from one of the sites listed: “Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create podcasts (maybe mock news reporting) about the H1N1. Assign each group a different area to explore (what is Swine Flu, how to stop the spread, and others).”


The Source for Learning is also the creator of www.PreschoolFirst.com, www.TeachersAndFamilies.com, and the upcoming www.GrowUpLearning.com, slated to launch later in 2009.



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