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Health and Safety: Teaching Tools

>Chemical Hazards

Safety Orientation

Safety Orientation

Safety features and equipment are installed in classrooms to protect your health and safety. These can include:

Fire Exits - Labelled by standard emergency exit signage

ENSURE that doors are not blocked.
REPORT to your teacher any exit light that is not lit. Your teacher will then notify maintenance.






Fire Alarm/Fire Exit/Fire Extinguisher

Fire Alarm - Usually by a door

PULL to activate.
KEEP access to the alarm clear.




Fire Extinguisher - Usually mounted on the wall near a doorway. Should be a Multi-Purpose Dry Chemical type extinguisher labeled "ABC".

READ instructions for use on the extinguisher
ENSURE access to the extinguisher is clear.




Smoke Detector - Usually located on ceilings. Activated by smoke and/or flame.


Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) - Includes safety glasses and goggles, gloves, lab coats and/or aprons.

KNOW where all PPE items are located.
REPORT any defects in PPE to the teacher (e.g. hole in gloves)

ALWAYS use the appropriate PPE when working with chemicals.





Eyewash Station - Mounted on the wall. Portable eyewash rinse "bottles" may be available instead.

Eye Wash Staton/Safety Shower

USE to rinse chemicals or small particles (e.g. sand) from the eye.

ENSURE access to the eyewash station is clear.

Safety (deluge) shower - For heat burns and chemical splashes to the skin.

KEEP area around shower clear.


Teaching Tips

Safety rules can be complex, but a few simple classroom rules, reinforced EACH time students are preparing to use chemicals in the classroom instill an important skill - stopping to assess hazards BEFORE starting work.

Here are a few examples that can be used at the start of a lab:

HAVE students verify that safety equipment is in place and in good condition, and that access to the equipment is not blocked.

Suggestion : Have the students do a routine check to ensure there is a clear path to the eyewash station each time chemicals are used in the room. Portable eyewash rinse "bottles" need regular maintenance to ensure they are clean, fresh and ready for use.

  • READ the labels of the chemical(s) that you will be using that day.
  • REVIEW the MSDS before using the chemical(s).
  • USE or wear PPE required for safe use of the chemical(s), as recommended in the MSDS.
  • DISPOSE of the chemical(s) safely as recommended in the MSDS at the end of the lab.


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