DPT visits elementary school to discuss bones, physical therapy and backpack safety
Department of Physical Therapy Education (DPTE) faculty, staff and students visited Burlington Day School in Alamance County to talk with students about the structure and function of bone tissue, and how to avoid bone damage as a result of overloaded backpacks.
Drs. Stewart Holt and Janet Cope, accompanied by DPT graduate students Michelle Cusack, Aislinn Hundley, Josh Locke, and Katie Reynolds, discussed how knowledge of boney landmarks play an essential role in assisting physical therapists in the treatment and care plans of their patients. Mechelle Noronha’s seventh graders also assembled complete skeletons in small groups with the grad students, while discussing various bones and joints in the human body. The elementary students were also given exercises to weigh themselves with their backpacks to assess potential stress on their joints and spine. This program was funded, in part, by an Elon University Community Partnership Initiative (CPI) Grant. Elon University DPTE students and faculty are partnering with Stacy Thurm, a PT in the Alamance County School System and community science teachers, to increase awareness around various health topics.
The elementary school students did a great job assembling skeletons and identifying major joint systems and also enjoyed passing around some of Dr Cope’s collection of real human bones.The CPI grant will allow for more local elementary and middle school visits encouraging participation in the arts and sciences, and offer first year DPTE students exposure and experience communicating physical therapy topics to a younger population.