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New web pages help children learn about bugs at home

Web pages designed to help children learn at home about infections such as seasonal influenza, come online today to coincide with European Antibiotic Awareness Day - 18 November 2010.

The content is part of an upgraded website and is the latest development from e-Bug’s team of health and education experts, who last year sent all schools in England a teaching pack, with website links, to help children learn about how to protect themselves against such infections.

e-Bug’s website teaches the science behind microbiology, hygiene and antibiotic resistance in a fun, easy-to-grasp way. The new pages are aimed at children and have online games, revision guides, a hall of fame and a range of science experiments that can be tried at home with parents.

To mark the website extension and to highlight European Antibiotic Awareness Day 2010, the HPA is giving school children across the country the opportunity to enter a national competition to help raise awareness of antibiotic resistance.

Children can enter by designing a poster (9-11 year olds) or a computer game (12 -15 year olds) which tells other children about antibiotic resistance. They can choose to take part through their school or by downloading an application form directly from the e-Bug website.

Two winners will receive £100 worth of entertainment vouchers and see their poster or computer game design, developed and used nationally as part of next year’s European Antibiotic Resistance Awareness Campaign. The winning schools will also be offered the opportunity for the e-Bug team to visit the school and run a day of activities for the children. 

Donna Lecky, e-Bug project manager explains more:

 “The new children’s pages sit alongside the original e-Bug resource which is downloadable from the website for teachers at http://www.e-bug.eu/. This is the first time that children have been able to access information about the topics they have learnt about in school.

“The new pages and ideas for activities have been designed and developed as a direct result of talking to children and asking what they would like to see online.

“The senior website allows children to create their own character who will appear every time they log on. They will also be able to compete against other players by saving scores for games and viewing a scoreboard of the highest scores.

“Junior aged children can download disease fact files and photographs of different microbes and take online quizzes. Go to www.e-bug.eu  to have a look.

“We hope the competition will encourage students to use the new web pages and we are working in collaboration with the Schools Council UK to ensure all schools are aware of the competition and the new web pages ahead of the launch.

“We also intend to use the two winning designs as part of next year’s antibiotic awareness campaign.”

Notes for Editors:

  • The e-Bug website is www.e-bug.eu
  • Each e-Bug activity indicates where it links into the English school curriculum.
  • e-Bug is available for all schools to use.
  • e-Bug was launched in ten EU countries with some of the highest antibiotic use and largest populations, making up 55% of the EU population. The 10 countries which will be implementing e-Bug are Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Greece, Italy, Poland, Portugal and Spain. Eight countries are seeking funding to implement it are Croatia, Lithuania, Latvia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Slovenia and Slovakia
  • e-Bug was funded  by the European Commission Director General for Health, and Consumer Protection Directorate General. 40% of funding is contributed by the ten countries implementing e-Bug
  • The new e-Bug website for children is funded by the Health Protection Agency.
  • e-Bug has been endorsed by the Ministries of Health and Education in 10 EU countries including England.