APPROACH AND METHODOLOGY
The LIVESTRONG at School program was originally developed by LIVESTRONG staff and external consultants, who collectively have more than 75 years of experience in curriculum development. The content was reviewed by teachers across the country, a curriculum development expert and a clinical psychologist specializing in childhood cancer. The program has been pilot tested in classrooms in New York, Iowa and Texas; and continues to evolve based on teacher feedback and with the addition of new materials and resources.
LIVESTRONG is committed to expanding the resources available for the youngest students, in efforts to truly change the way the next generation will think about cancer. Building off of the existing model, LIVESTRONG will work with partners at Scholastic, Inc. to create new lesson plans, student worksheets and a classroom poster for display; in addition, enhancements will be made to existing content and it will be packaged seamlessly with the new content, to offer teachers a comprehensive resource delivered by brands they know and trust. Distribution plans anticipate delivering this program to at least 8500 U.S. classrooms.
IMPLEMENTATION, TIMELINE, AND DELIVERABLES
LIVESTRONG and Scholastic, Inc. will develop and disseminate this new resource to K-2 teachers across the United States. The project will be initiated with a content development meeting, followed by the exchange of art assets and a review of the content outline. Multiple rounds of review are conducted on layouts, to assess both content and design. Final products will be signed off on by both partners by June, 2011.
Dissemination via hard-copy mailing and online postings, with corresponding electronic promotion to appropriate segments of Scholastic's database will take place in the weeks surrounding the start of the 2011-2012 school year.
School professionals will be surveyed about the program to assess program usage, helpfulness of resources, teachers' beliefs that the lessons increase students' knowledge about cancer and cancer survivorship, and how likely they are to recommend the program to a colleague. Additionally, web metrics are analyzed to assess usage, popularity of specific program elements and effectiveness of promotional tactics.
LIVESTRONG has committed to making a cancer a global priority. This includes reaching out to educate and empower children about cancer. We know that 1 in 3 Americans will be diagnosed with cancer (American Cancer Society, 2010). The U.S. National Cancer Institute estimates that 1/4 of cancer patients have a school-aged child (NCI, 1992) and approximately 3 million children live with a parent who is a cancer survivor (Cancer, 2010). Therefore, we know that children in classrooms all over the U.S. are dealing with cancer right now-with a parent, family member, friend, teacher, or community member. Additional research has shown that siblings of children with cancer report that the support they receive in school, from teachers and classmates, is just as important as the support they get from parents (Alderfer and Hodges, 2010). LIVESTRONG at School was created to provide school professionals and other caring adults with guidance in how to talk with children about cancer and to help them learn how to help children cope. LIVESTRONG at School offers tools to teach students about cancer in a way that is age-appropriate, inspiring and empowering.