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Issues in safety education interventions
  1. J A Thomson
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor J A Thomson
 Department of Psychology, University of Strathclyde, 40 George Street, Glasgow, UK; j.a.thomson{at}

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The Lifeskills team and their sponsors are to be congratulated for the evaluation reported in this issue

See linked article on p 161

The paper by Lamb et al reports an evaluation of a safety education “village” that has been running in Bristol, UK for some years.1 The training that children receive is comprehensive and includes safety in the home and garden; on farms and the countryside; by rivers, railways, and building sites. It even addresses product labeling. There is also an element of road safety training, although this is surprisingly limited. In addition to its use with children, the village has been used to help the learning disabled.

To the authors’ credit, an evaluation of the program’s effectiveness with this population has also been undertaken. The Lifeskills program has a good website (which incidentally contains lengthier reports, both of the current evaluation and of that undertaken with learning disabled adults), and readers interested in the concept of a “safety village” should certainly take the time to visit it (

The concept of a regional training center where children receive intensive exposure to a variety of activities in a single visit is a popular one and has been implemented with varying degrees of sophistication for many years. Such centers have the attraction of providing relatively realistic contexts within which learning can take place and they usually involve at least some degree of practical training which, from a learning point of view, is highly desirable.2 Children generally enjoy them and their high face validity makes them popular with both schools and parents.

To some extent this high face validity is their …

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