We finished up our Fire Safety unit with Cloverbuds yesterday with an amazing visit to our local Fire Station.
But first….our library meeting. We started by playing some Fire Safety Jeopardy. I took a lot of the questions from an online game I found at the Hamilton Township Fire District website. Since I still haven’t figured out how to hook my laptop up to the overhead projector at the library, I made up a game board using cardstock. The kids were able to come up and pull off the number for the question they wanted to answer.
This allowed for lots of discussion about various aspects of fire safety – like smoke detectors, fire drills and safe behavior. The questions were mostly multiple choice or true/false and some were pretty easy (if you find matches or a lighter you should: a) give them to your parents b) play with them c) give them to your dog).
While we played Jeopardy, the kids were waiting to see what we were going to do with the big tunnel set up in the room so that was what we did next.
This was the first step in our Escape the Fire obstacle course. It was made from two king size sheets stretched across rows of chairs and secured with binder clips. The sheets hung down loosely since I didn’t want the chairs to fall over if someone yanked on the sheets.
The kids started by crawling under the “smoke”. They then felt a door to see if it was hot or cold. If it was cold, they could continue crawling (under a table) to get outside. If it was hot, they had to go out a window (over a table). (I know Georgie should be checking the door not the handle. He did it right after this but I only was able to take the one picture).
Once they were “out of the house”, they went to a neighbors or used a cell phone to call 911. I meant to bring an old phone but forgot it so they had to settle for a piece of paper on the wall.
They didn’t seem to mind my really bad representation of a phone and had a great time calling and reporting a fire. After a while, some of the older kids decided to call and order pizza instead. ;-)
After calling 911, they could go to their safe meeting place and meet with their family.
I thought this might be a pretty quick activity but the kids literally went through it about 8 times each. Great reinforcement for what to do. I sat by the table serving as an escape and would ask them if the door was hot or cold and what they needed to do next.
After the kids finally finished with the obstacle course, we did a Stop, Drop and Roll balloon pop. I found this online as a way to help kids realize they need to roll long enough for a fire to go out. Each kid had a red or orange balloon taped to their back. They then rolled around until the balloon popped. This way a lot harder than I expected it to be. I didn’t blow the balloons up very large since I had to carry 15 of them to the library (some kids didn’t make it so we ended up having enough for each kid to do it twice) and that made them much harder to pop. The kids had a great time with this and there was a LOT of laughing.
We finished up with a game of Stop/Drop/Roll freeze dance. It was played like traditional freeze dance, except when the music stopped I would say “FIRE” and they would drop and roll.
We didn’t have a craft for fire safety since everything I found was very cookie-cutter and very simple so that finished up the library portion of our unit.
Now, to our visit to the fire station. They split us into two groups to make it easier. One group ended up much larger than the other since a few people who came a little late ended up joining the group outside with the fire trucks. It was probably just as well since we ended up in a fairly small group and Georgie was displaying his usual level of self-control (IOW – none).
We started with one of the fire fighters telling the kids about what they should do in case of a fire and showing them what kind of gear they used. The kids had a chance to see how heavy the gear bags are….
and count down while he put on his fire gear. He told them at the fire academy they need to get it all on in 30 seconds. He didn’t quite make it but the kids counted fast and he was interrupted about half-way. It was amazingly hard to get decent pictures of him in his gear. The reflective strips caused super bright spots when a flash was used but the room was too dark to get a good picture without flash.
Once he was in his full gear, he grabbed his axe and crawled on the floor to show the kids how it would look when a fire fighter comes in. They really want the kids to understand not to be afraid, that they are there to help them.
The kids had the chance to see how heavy the axe is (Georgie kept asking about what if they use the axe to chop off heads. <<sigh>>)…
and a few of the kids tried on the face mask or helmet. They were surprised by how heavy the helmet was.
We then moved outside for a closer look at the trucks. The fire fighters told them about all the specialized equipment they used. The hoses were HUGE!
And they had the chance to climb inside two different trucks.
It was an amazing trip, the fire fighters did a great job and the kids had a blast. At the end they were given fire fighter hats, badges and activity sets with stickers, tattoos, coloring/activity books.