Teddy Bear Clinic takes the ‘ouch’ out of hospital visits
Posted on 05/02/2023
Teddy Bear Clinic takes the ‘ouch’ out of hospital visits

As kindergarten students walked into the Bayview Avenue Elementary School gymnasium, they carried their favorite stuffed animals and teddy bears ready to learn about a hospital visit thanks to the Teddy Bear Clinic hosted by Mount Sinai-South Nassau Hospital. 

With the intention of preparing students for a visit to the hospital, the district’s kindergartners spent part of their morning moving with their teddy bears through several stations, including a physical exam station, medical imaging, surgery, physical and respiratory therapy. 

 “By bringing the Teddy Bear Clinic to all of our kindergarten students we can help alleviate the fear and anxiety that is often associated with a hospital visit,” said Dr. Helen Kanellopolous, Assistant Superintendent for Pupil Personnel Services and Special Education. “While we do all we can to teach our students about safety and preventing injuries, accidents happen and having an awareness of what happens next through a hands-on experience is a wonderful learning experience.” 

As students visited each station the health care professionals from Mount Sinai- South Nassau Hospital explained to the students the details of their jobs, the different instruments they use to care for their patients and the different types of procedures conducted. Students hopped on one foot and stretched with their teddy bears in the physical therapy station, listened to their teddy bears’ hearts and checked their ears and eyes at the physical exam station. The highlight of the morning for many students was putting a cast on their teddy bears’ arms, ears, tails, legs or hands at the medical imaging station. 

It was a beneficial experience full of fun and education for the students, as they helped their favorite stuffed animals get well.