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Game and instructions

Unintentional injuries are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality among infants and children. Such injuries account for 31.8 percent of the deaths among U.S. children ages 1-9 (Heron 2019). Childhood injuries result in more than 9 million emergency department visits in the U.S. annually (CDC 2012). Children can be injured by household products that were not thought to be hazardous when introduced.

To answer this challenge, we created an educational game called Virtual Safe Home, which you can play in a web browser or in virtual reality using a VR headset that uses a phone. Our first audience is trainee clinicians who work with families that have small children, but it could also be useful for parents and social workers. This site contains our first deployment of the software.

The link will take you to the desktop version of Virtual Safe Home. You'll be in a simulated kitchen, free to look around using your mouse and "jump" between three set locations in the virtual space. The goal is to use your mouse to click on all 20 pediatric hazards hidden around the room. There is no time limit, but a timer and scorekeeper on screen will encourage you. Stop when you've had enough, and click on the kitchen door to exit.

Detailed instructions are below.

Screenshot from Virtual Safe Home video game

When you first enter the game, you'll be at toddler height, and will see the scene on the left. To look around, click the window where the view is and roll the mouse around. To jump to the area in front the of the sink, click the arrow in front of it. You will see your viewpoint zoom to that location.

Screenshot from Virtual Safe Home video game

You will see this view next.

Screenshot from Virtual Safe Home video game

To go to adult height look up and click on the outline of a man. You will see your viewpoint zoom upward. Look around the room and note the objects that are easier to see and some that are now hidden.

Screenshot from Virtual Safe Home video game

Any time you want to be a kid again, look down at your feet, and click the outline of the child. Your viewpoint will zoom downward, you'll be back to toddler height, and the outline of the man will be above you.

Screenshot from Virtual Safe Home video game

The goal of the game is to find and click on all 20 of the health hazards in the room. One of them is shown on the right. When you click on it, the name and description pops up and your score will increment. It will disappear in a few seconds, or you can dismiss it by clicking on the "x."