The great thing about having kids at home and a husband that works at school is that I get to explore all sorts of educational materials that are beneficial for both my children and use in the classroom! Fire safety is an important topic for kids of all ages but making it interesting for kids makes them more prone to remember it. I LOVE the free resources that the SparkySchoolHouse site has for teachers which can be sorted by grade level.
Sparky the Fire Dog is well loved in our household so not only were we excited to hear about his new Brain Busters app available for free for Android and in the iTune store BUT you can actually play it in a CLASSROOM setting! Your students can connect their devices in the classroom and do a multiplayer game to compete against each other in trivia!
As with any trivia game the basic part of the game is answering trivia questions correctly! The subject areas are math, science, social studies and fire safety – answer them correctly to earn character “badges”! There are varying levels of difficulty that you can choose from as well as choosing timed games in various increments. It’s not as easy as it seems though!
Every character in the app gives you some educational information about something in history which is pretty cool. You can watch the app trailer here.
A Practical (FUN!) Lesson for Kids at Home on Fire
As with just about everything I do with my kids I like to teach them fire safety with hands on interactive experiences. I find that they recall what was learned so much better and providing them with an experience as opposed to just information makes it more exciting! Each year we start our fire safety talk by working as a family to get a nice big fire going! The kids of COURSE love this but as they’ve gotten older we’ve adjusted our learning lessons. Now we experiment with wet sticks, dry sticks, paper, plastic, etc. and observe how quickly the fire gets going.
Once we have a good fire going we roast s’mores and watch as the fire not only burns the marshmallows but literally melts it right off the stick after just a few minutes if left in the fire. It gives the kids a great visual! (and a tasty one too!) They can physically feel the heat of the fire. After our s’mores are done we run to the house to act out a “fire drill” with various scenarios. We give the kids a scenario such as “You’re playing in the basement and there is a fire in the kitchen blocking the stairwell – what do you do?”.
Climbing out the basement windows are always a hit for kids! But in all seriousness – it’s a fantastic way for the kids to immediately recall what to do should there truly be a fire in the house somewhere. We teach them how to drop to the floor and what to do if they happen to catch on fire. This video that teaches about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 is a great informative visual for the kids to not only learn an important event in history but to hear about the dangers of fire.