This is post is sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association and Sparky.org.
When I taught first grade, I had a folder for every unit organized by month. This was the time of the year I’d pull out my National Fire Prevention Week folder and flip through my lesson plans, worksheets, and paperback picture books to select items for teaching my kids about fire safety. But these days classrooms instruction extends well beyond traditional paper and pencil tasks to ones done on interactive white boards, class computers, and individual laptops or tablets. Lessons about fire safety are more engaging than ever thanks to Sparky’s Firehouse app and the companion website, Sparky.org.
This popular free Sparky’s Firehouse app has been redone to teach ages 6-8 essential fire safety skills while providing important reading and math skills. Developed by National Fire Protection Association, it’s a great way to reinforce classroom learning and life skills in a fun and age appropriate ways.
Early elementary ages can practice practicing counting, sequencing and sorting while playing Fix Up, Pick Up that involves fixing a fire truck with tires that are just the right size. This interactive game helps younger children with pre-math skills centered around the fire safety theme.
The Hear That? Game requires kids to rely on their memory, sequencing and listening skills as they work to get outside and find a safe outdoor meeting space when the fire alarm sounds. Take the lessons used from this game to inspire a conversation about where outside the home might be a safe family meeting spot. Let parents know that you discussed safe family meeting spots so they can reinforce the conversation at home and determine the safest meeting spot for their family in case of an emergency.
Sparky’s Make Believe is a game that appeals to all fire station loving kids! This game allows kids to explore a fire station while creating make believe scenarios and testing out the fire equipment. Sparky’s Make Believe taps into the imagination of younger kids and can serve as a conversation starter between pairs of preschool age kids or inspire a creative writing assignment for elementary ages.
More Free Resources for Teaching Fire Safety to Kids
As a former teacher, I know the importance of high quality free educational resources. Thankfully NFPA has more than just a couple of apps to help us teach our kids what they need to know about fire safety. From a companion website, multimedia to enhance classroom teaching, and the ability to easily share resources with fellow teachers, these three free resources are worth knowing about and sharing with your colleagues.
While the Sparky’s Firehouse app is great for parents to use at home with their kids and teachers who have access to mobile devices in their classrooms, the Sparky.org site is a wonderful classroom resource full of learning activities for elementary ages. It can be used at classroom computers as a learning center and shared with parents to extend classroom learning at home.
SparkySchoolhouse.org is a treasure trove of resources for today’s classroom teachers because it features age appropriate resources on fire safety for grades K-5 that address various learning styles. Teachers can access music and videos (the Steve Songs videos are perfect for preschoolers!) for their auditory learners while downloading ebooks tailored for different reading abilities. There are also lessons and activities for preschool and elementary ages along with resources in Spanish.
For teachers who love to share great finds with others, the Digital Backpack provides easy and instant one-click sharing to social networks so other teachers can benefit from your finds.
The National Fire Protection Association has an amazing collection of resources that are age appropriate ways to talk about fire safety with preschool and elementary ages. This topic might be scary for younger kids but I appreciate that friendly characters like Sparky the Fire Dog and Steve Songs are used to convey important information to kids to help them feel empowered. The interactive Sparky’s Firehouse app, Sparky.org, and SparkySchoolhouse.org are great in the classroom but also for home use as well as teachers look to bridge the home-school connection. Sharing these resources with parents serve as a way to continue the conversation to help kids feel safe.
For more information and resources for your classroom, visit NFPA on social media:
- @NFPA on Twitter
- @Sparky_Fire_Dog on Twitter
- @theNFPA on Facebook
- @SparkyTheFireDog on Facebook
- @NFPAdotorg & #SparkytheFireDog on Instagram
- @NFPA on Pinterest
- @NFPAdotorg on Google +
I was compensated for this post by National Fire Protection Association and Sparky.org but all opinions are my own.