University of Illinois Extension

T.A.S.K. - Teaching Agricultural Safety to Kids

Each year across the United States, 25,000 kids are seriously injured in agricultural-related accidents. Together we can reverse that trend.

Every community shares a commitment to educate and protect its children. Teaching Agricultural Safety to Kids (T.A.S.K.) is an FFA community partnership program that focuses on reducing the number of serious injuries and deaths among young children living in rural areas across the state. The TASK curriculum, developed in Illinois, is aimed at educating children ages 9 to 12 about various hazards around the farm and appropriate safety precautions.

About the TASK Curriculum

TASK is an ideal safety curriculum for children ages 9-12, as studies show children in this age bracket are highly likely to begin operating combines, lawn mowers, and garden tractor, taking care of animals, and experimenting with hand power tools. The risk factor of serious injury or death for these children is marked; safety education at this age is imperative.

The TASK curriculum is composed of several "hands on" safety units, an extensive resource appendix, and a strong family component. The units are intended to meet state education goals and may be incorporated into existing classroom curricula.

TASK is also a youth-teaching-youth model. FFA members receive intensive training about the curriculum and in turn serve as role models by teaching the program to younger children. Appropriate settings for TASK include elementary schools, 4-H clubs, Safety Day camps, and farm family events.

In order to assure that the TASK curriculum is technically correct and effective, a statewide Consortium of agricultural health and safety efforts provide ongoing review of the materials and they are written and revised.

TASK: A Specialized FFA Project for Your Community

To implement this program, FFA Chapters set up local safety committees called "TASK Teams." These committees, comprised of community leaders, parents, and other interested individuals, also help the Chapter evaluate the effectiveness of the TASK curriculum and, on an ongoing basis, identify new issues and safety education priorities for the area.

TASK has set up a toll free number to answer questions about how your community may establish a local TASK team for you area. Call 1-800-323-TASK to learn more about Teaching Agricultural Safety to Kids, or write:

Teaching Agricultural Safety to Kids
c/o Easter Seals Society
Western Region Office
510 Maine Street Room 806
Quincy, Illinois 62301