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Older Adult Falls Prevention: Teaching Experience

Summary of Teaching Plan

A teaching plan for this assignment was based on one of the most critical issues not only in Miami, Florida but also in the whole world. It was developed to highlight primary prevention and health promotion related to falls among the elderly in the mentioned city. The duration of the teaching series, according to this plan, was 10 days. In fact, it lasted for two weeks, but no courses were held on Sundays and Mondays due to the recommendations of the representatives of the selected community setting (community health center) that were based on the clients’ preferences. To maintain teaching, it was necessary to buy only a projector, as a personal laptop and center’s screen for viewing presentations were used. The plan was prepared to educate both the elderly who were at risk of falls and adults who were willing to assist them (especially relatives).

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This teaching plan was aligned with Healthy People 2020 objectives and Alma Ata’s Health for All Global Initiatives, which supported the fact that it was valuable for the community. In particular, it was focused on the reduction and prevention of falls and related injuries among the elderly. Four main objectives were identified within the plan. They dealt with education regarding risk factors, environmental modifications, development of a walking plan, and ability to maintain personally and teach others those techniques that enhance balance, coordination, and mobility. Success was assessed during the participants’ performances.

Epidemiological Rationale for Topic

Unintentional falls are claimed to be one of the most critical events that are faced by the elderly in the everyday life. While they usually do not cause any severe health issues among adolescents and younger adults, a lot of complications are observed among people who are 65 years and older (Wayne, 2016).

Three years ago in Florida, almost 2,500 seniors obtained fatal fall-related injuries while almost 51,000 individuals were hospitalized (Florida Health, 2015). Only in Miami, every third senior citizen who is more than 65 years old have fallen at least once. In addition to that, statistics reveal that those who already have had an experience of falling are more likely to repeat it (Miami-Date County, 2014). What is more, less than a half of these individuals tell their doctor about this event, which means that they receive no treatment (Healthy People 2020, 2017).

It is also critical to pay attention to the expenses that are triggered by falls because when the elderly are admitted to the hospital with an injury, those services they obtain are to be paid. Florida Health (2015) indicates that the elderly stay in healthcare facilities for 4 days as a rule and the average hospitalization for these non-fatal injuries cost more than $45,000 while all in all almost $3.5 billion are spent.

Evaluation of Teaching Experience

Personally, I believe that the teaching experience I received in the framework of this course was positive regardless of the fact that there were some areas for improvement. It provided me with the opportunity to realize how to work with diverse populations, educate them, and ensure their involvement.

First of all, I got to know how to develop a teaching plan that serves as a guideline for the whole course. I understood what information was to be mentioned and what could be included in the very classes. I also noticed that the readiness for learning expressed by the participants can be easily observed and that the success of the whole teaching process depends on it greatly.

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I managed to utilize social learning theory with no critical complications, which can be proved by the fact that the participants were able to repeat the things they saw in practice. I used individual and group types of activities, which allowed to meet the needs of the diverse population. I used various educational strategies to avoid boredom and ensure engagement. I resorted to physical activities that can be used in real life with clear instructions, as the majority of the participants successfully passed the final assessment. I also gave individuals and groups an opportunity to evaluate their work. Thus, they paid more attention to common mistakes and ways to avoid them.

Community Response to Teaching

As it was previously mentioned, this teaching experience was held in the community health center. All individuals who revealed their desire to take part in the course were enrolled. As a result, adults and older adults attended the program for two weeks. I expected positive community response to my teaching so initially I had to make sure that the participants were highly involved and would do their best to reach good outcomes. I enrolled those individuals who represented the elderly or were close to them so that the topic of falls was interesting and significant to them. They were listening to me attentively and asked additional questions from time to time. Some also shared their personal experiences of falls, trying to identify why those events happened and how they could have been avoided.

The participants were rather active during our discussions and took part in all activities voluntary. There was no necessity to ensure someone that this or that task was significant and should not have been avoided. They also shared their feedback with me, which allowed me to understand what things they liked the most and resort to them more often. Soon I got to know that they also try to educate their friends and relatives on the information they get to know during our course. I believe that in this way, more people within this community started paying attention to the safety of older adults. Even if they were not able to provide some specialized assistance or assess one’s condition regarding the risk for falling, they were able to help the elderly on the streets or to make some changes in their homes.

Areas of Strengths and Areas of Improvement

On the basis of this teaching experience, I can tell that I am a good educator even though I still need to improve some areas. First of all, I believe that my communication skills turned into my main strength during this practice. I had to get in touch with the representatives of the community health center where the courses were held and with the participants. I managed to get to know all the information I required to follow my plan. I was able to make the participants more talkative if that was needed and they got involved in the conversation quickly. I also value my ability to control emotions.

In some cases, I resorted to humor to entertain the audience for a second so that they felt some refreshment and were ready to continue working. However, I have never revealed exaggerated emotions. In a similar way, when I was nervous or disappointed because something went wrong I did not lose my energy or become extremely sad. Still, I had some issues with adaptability when I was not able to maintain an activity I planned beforehand. I also think that I should have resorted to recognition more because my responses to the participants’ success were rather limited and lacked various shades so that it usually sounded as “perfect”, “correct”, “very good”, or “nice”. I should also improve my time management skills because at the beginning I accomplished everything planned before the time was up.


Florida Health. (2015). Older adult falls prevention.

Healthy People 2020. (2017). Older adults.

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Miami-Date County. (2014). Home safety for the elderly. Web.

Wayne, G. (2016). Risk for falls.

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