The Lauren’s Kids Safer, Smarter Schools curriculum is the country’s first Pre-Kindergarten through grade 12 school-based prevention and personal safety curriculum series. The curriculum contains educationally sound content for children, parents, teachers and administrators. The Safer, Smarter Kids program spans Pre-Kindergarten through grade 5, as well as special education; Safer, Smarter Teens provides lessons for middle and high school students.
The curriculum was developed by Lauren Book, M.S. Ed, and a multidisciplinary team of educators and developmental psychologists to teach children critical personal safety information in a developmentally and age appropriate way. Safer, Smarter Kids and Safer, Smarter Teens are evidence-based, pedagogically sound, spiral curriculum programs based on developmental milestones; as a child’s world expands, so too does the content of the lessons to meet their increasing safety needs. The Safer, Smarter Schools program empowers children with tools that are not only protective from abuse, but also important esteem and safety issues such as bullying, Internet safety and empowerment.
Throughout the curriculum lessons, students are armed with protective principles and vocabulary to express their feelings and talk to a trusted adult. We know that 90 percent of the time a child is being harmed, it’s at the hands of someone they – and their parents – know and trust, and that lessons such as “stranger danger” and “good touch, bad touch” are antiquated and misinformed. In Safer, Smarter Kids and Safer, Smarter Teens, students are taught to identify “safe” and “unsafe” situations, people and secrets based on how each these things make them feel. In older grades, we address issues adolescents face in relationships with peers and adults, such as balance of power, enforcing boundaries and the grooming process.
Each grade level contains five to eight lessons that are aligned with state education standards for easy integration into the classroom through benchmarks in academic areas including social sciences, reading and health. The curriculum enables all children to effectively learn these critical strategies, no matter their learning style. Effectiveness testing has showed a 77 percent learning gain children’s knowledge of critical personal safety information after completing the program.