International Schools Group (ISG)

School Nurse

Notes from the Nurse's Office

Why use Backpacks?

Different lessons, moving between classes, taking work home and bringing it back to school are all good reasons for wearing a backpack.

Going camping, going out for the day, going to stay over at a friend’s place, hiking in the country or even round the shops – a backpack will hold everything you need and leave both hands free.

When backpacks can be dangerous

Yes, backpacks are great, but you do need to take a bit of care or they could be dangerous.

  • On the bus a backpack could knock into someone.
  • When walking in crowds you could hurt someone if your backpack is really full and heavy.
  • Someone could fall over it if you haven’t put it under your seat properly.
  • It could fall on someone if it is on top of a locker or shelf at school.
  • The straps could trip someone if they are sticking out from the bag.
  • Not wearing them properly can hurt your back, neck and shoulders.

Using a backpack

  • Always use both straps over the shoulders.  Choose padded straps so they don’t dig into the shoulders.
  • Alter the straps so that the backpack fits up against the shoulders and back when standing up straight.
  • If you need to lean forward then the straps are not tight enough.
  • Don’t have everything including the kitchen sink in there!
  • Clean it out regularly – half dead lunches, mouldy apples etc. are extra weight as well as germ factories!
  • Only carry what is actually needed.  Lockers, trays and desks are for storing books that are not required all the time – be organized and only carry what is needed in a backpack.
  • Give a backpack a wash or wipe out at the end of a term.  It will look and smell better and it will last longer, too.

The most you should carry in a backpack is 10% to 15% of your body weight – so if you are a little kid and you weigh 32kg, you should only be carrying between 3 and 4kg of weight.  Carrying more can be doing damage to your back.

Headaches, backaches or tingling feelings in your arms or back may be signs that the straps of the backpack need adjusting or you are carrying too much weight.

 

Regards,

School Nurses’ Office
ISG Dhahran
330-0555 ext.2201/2202