Safety and surf's up from Tom Deveson

16th March 2007 at 00:00
Operation Beach Clean after March 22; Free online resource for science and English, 11-14

People who understand the concept of eutrophication aren't usually the same as those who talk about feeling stoked.

Operation Beach Clean brings the languages of science and surfing into happy alliance in an interactive website full of colourful animations and informative storylines.

Our guide, Andy, is a campaigner for Surfers against Sewage. He introduces us to intriguing characters such as Crystal Clear, Sandy Bottom, Ed the Dread and sweetshop owner Ms Worthington-Smyth. Most important, he leads us through scenarios in which pollution, biodiversity and laboratory research play central roles.

Pupils can model and measure the eutrophication process, realising how water can become so rich in nutrients that excessive plant growth leads to a loss of oxygen.

They can discover the best environment for mayflies and bloodworms, and the pollutant effects of sheep dip and slurry.

In doing this, they search the internet, analyse statistics and produce explanatory graphs. If their green passions are sufficiently aroused, they can design posters, organise a debate and write a press release.

Their teachers won't just be pleased; they'll be feeling stoked.

Operation Beach Clean is being launched on March 22, World Water Day, at the Education Show (NEC, Birmingham, Stand E127)

Deedee and Dennis the Dragon pound;4.99, five-plus

Junior Citizen Handbook First Aid Handbook

pound;9.99 each, seven-plus; Children's Safety Education Foundation; 0161 477 5122

The 60-plus pages of these colourful A4 booklets are filled with a well-judged mixture of puzzles, quizzes, cartoons and information, all dedicated towards keeping their young readers alive and safe.

Deedee and Dennis are very small dragons who aren't old enough to play with matches.

Five-year-olds will learn with them why it's not a good idea to get involved with fire, how fires might start, how to stop them once they do, the best way to raise an alarm and how to escape if you're trapped by flames.

The Junior Citizen Handbook invites key stage 2 readers to share the concerns of the Metropolitan Police. Road safety is one essential topic, but we also consider the need to avoid playing on railways, risking death by water, trusting dodgy strangers, taking drugs to seem grown-up and suffering from hate crimes.

The same children will learn a lot from the First Aid Handbook. There's a good account of how parts of the body - bones, brain, bladder and the rest - fit together.

An A-Z of possible problems from abdominal pain to wounds is matched with sensible advice on what to do yourself and how to get adult help

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