Iowa Farm Safety Days Educate Youth

Charles V. Schwab, Professor and Extension Safety Specialist, Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering


Iowa State University Extension farm safety program is strategically positioned to accomplish positive results by providing training and educational resources volunteers that educate youth about agricultural hazards.


An effective learning environment for youth 8 to 14 years of age that improves their understanding of potential hazards associated with living and working on a farm will be generated by local farm safety day camps.


Roughly 100 Iowa farm safety day camps have been conducted over the past 3 years educating nearly 15,000 youth about agricultural hazards. These camps often provide youth with their first farm safety and health instruction that allows them to make smart and safe decisions for the rest of their lives.


A pre- and post-test study was conducted to determine the impact of these educational activities over a period of three years. The knowledge and behaviors of 263 youth participants enrolled in Iowa farm safety day camp programs was measured. An analysis of data showed a quantifiable improvement between the pre- and post-test results. Participants improved their safety behaviors so that they would:

Knowledge about good safety practices were measured based on participants’ responses to several questions. Participants understood that:

These measured changes from before the camp experience to 6 months after camp clearly indicate success in conveying farm safety information to participants and their abilities to retain key farm safety information. These one-day events accomplish the objective of providing an effective learning environment for Iowa youth.


182 - Farm Safety and Bio-security

Page last updated: October 14, 2008
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