Publications and Presentations
SciEd Conference 2022
The session will provide an overview of the power of science and health outreach stories in informal education and the process We Engage 4 Health uses to create and evaluate them. Participants will work in groups, each with a chosen health science topic, to identify three big ideas for a story, plan a story arc, and begin story script. Groups will exchange stories, read them out loud taking the parts of characters, and evaluate the stories using a story impact survey. If time permits, presenters will demonstrate putting one of the scripts into a graphic format using Comic Life software. Presenters will later put all group’s scripts into graphic format and e-mail attendees the resulting PDFs to help demonstrate how the story creation process plays out. Links to a story development guide and other resources will be provided.
We Engage 4 Health (WE4H) is a health outreach project working with communities in southern Ohio. In summer 2021, we were approached by a community partner interested in teaching elementary-school children in a summer program about the impact of the environment on resident’s health and involve them in collecting environmental data as citizen scientists. To create this program, we adapted materials from existing WE4H programs that were originally developed for middle school through adult ages to create a 6-week Climate Club. WE4H programs feature graphic style stories that participants read out loud as the characters followed by discussion and related activities. For Climate Club, we used selected stories from our Health is Happenin’ RAP program, our Citizen Science RAP program, and training materials for our environmental health data collection tool called Eyewitness Community Survey (ECS). Topics included how to pose research questions, how to collect and present data, and the impact of heat islands and air quality on health. Hands-on activities included testing filtration materials, graphing candy color frequencies, and investigating how metals affect Kool-Aid. Citizen science activity included using the ECS tool to observe the school grounds environment and the Airbeam Sensor to collect air quality and temperature data.