The spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has resulted in a pandemic (COVID-19), requiring measured approaches such as public lockdowns and quarantining. We cannot underestimate the role that our youth can play in mitigating the spread of the virus. We must engage with the community, to amplify the voices of our youth, and encourage them to be well-informed public health advocates. Further, recognizing each community’s potential towards curbing COVID-19 will reaffirm these public health actions.
- To build K-12 student awareness about the science of COVID-19 and vaccines.
- To promote public health action (social distancing, handwashing, face masks) and increase health literacy among K-12th grade students.
- To increase engagement between K-12 students and health care professionals.
- To develop a pipeline of health educators from diverse backgrounds.
- To implement a “teach the teacher” model of health education that can be scaled locally, nationally, and internationally.
Therefore, we have created our COVID-19 course for elementary to high school level students.
We offer our COVID-19 curriculum to early elementary, elementary, middle, and high school levels. Each lesson is presented by trained instructors and consists of a 30-minute lecture with an additional 10-15 minutes for questions and answers. We provide worksheets, as well as a digital workbook, for students and teachers. In each session, instructors cover the following topics:
COVID-19 Biology: Covers the biological makeup, signs, and symptoms of the COVID-19 virus, and preventative measures to use to stop the spread.
Math Model: Explains the variables to consider in reducing the rate of infection, as well as how the virus reproduces through the air in indoor and outdoor environments.
COVID-19 Interventions: Outlines how to reduce the spread of COVID-19 as well as how to prevent the virus’ most life-threatening symptoms.
Vaccines: Discusses the makeup of vaccines, its effectiveness, and how our immune systems respond to vaccines.
Mutations and Variants: Addresses the causes of mutations and variants of the COVID-19 virus and the and preventative measures necessary to stop their spread.
Debunking Vaccine Myths: Emphasizes the importance of scientific literacy and critical thinking, and debunking common misconceptions about scientific findings, specifically relating to the COVID-19 vaccines.
Mental Health: Discusses how to recognize the symptoms of stress and anxiety, and some tips on how to cultivate healthy coping mechanisms for mental well-being during these unprecedented times.
What’s New with COVID: Offers insight to students on any new information on COVID-19, variants, and/or vaccines.
Still learning more about the virus each day, the HEAT Corps team regularly updates our curriculum to accurately reflect public health guidelines.
The Johns Hopkins HEAT Corps recruits volunteer instructors from across the Hopkins student body and at any training level (undergraduate and graduate professional students, and graduate medical education trainees).
JHU SOURCE, the Johns Hopkins community engagement and service-learning center for the health professional schools, promotes the HEAT Corps program, recruits and trainings students across the School of Medicine, Bloomberg School of Public Health, and the School of Nursing to become instructors. JHU SOURCE’s work is a critical component of the university’s commitment to strengthening community engagement.
Johns Hopkins HEAT Corps is a unique opportunity for the Hopkins student body to develop health education and teaching skills and support youth in their understanding of COVID-19.
As a HEAT Corps volunteer, you will lead conversations about how youth can make a difference by modeling social distancing, handwashing, and mask wearing. Additional benefits of the program include:
- increased engagement between K-12 youth and health care professionals
- development of a pipeline of health educators from diverse backgrounds
- implementation of a “teach the teacher” model of health education that can be scaled locally and/or nationally
- training and guidance from a team of Johns Hopkins faculty and staff.
We invite volunteers to become a part of an exciting national initiative! To learn more about the volunteer recruitment process, email firstname.lastname@example.org