Academic journal article Environmental Health Perspectives

Tox-in-a-Box

Academic journal article Environmental Health Perspectives

Tox-in-a-Box

Article excerpt

The Tox Ambassador--a scientist visiting from a nearby university--squeezes several drops of blue dye into three different-sized beakers of water. The audience of sixth-grade students can easily see that although the same amount of dye is put in each beaker, the water in the smallest "baby" beaker turns much darker than that in the larger "big kid" and "adult" beakers. They are learning a key concept in toxicology: that your body size affects your dose, and that the dose makes the poison.

Thousands of students have learned about environmental health science through presentations like these based on the Tox-in-a-Box[TM] resources kit, which includes activities for grades kindergarten through 12 (K-12), slides, demonstrations, instructions, tips for presenters, and a resource manual for teachers. The kit is designed for toxicologists and other environmental and public health professionals--Tox Ambassadors--to use in outreach efforts to students and teachers. It is produced and distributed by the Community Outreach and Education Program (COEP) of the NIEHS Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health at the University of Washington.

Tox-in-a-Box was originally developed by COEP staff at the request of environmental health professionals who had been invited to give presentations in classrooms and weren't sure how to explain toxicology to young audiences. …

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