Promoting Fire Safety At Schools

All students need to be taught fire safety so they understand the dangers of fire, how to help prevent fires, and what to do in case a fire breaks out. Learning a few basic rules can save countless lives and homes. Use the ideas and incentives below to promote fire safety and prevention at local schools.

Make a Day of It

Spend the school day with students—one day per grade. Work with teachers ahead of time to incorporate fire safety into every lesson or class.

  • Physical Education: Set up an obstacle course to simulate escaping a home during a fire. Include an obstacle that shows children how to crawl low under smoke. Pass out mini sports balls as awards.
  • Science: Explain and demonstrate oxygen’s effect on fire or why CO2 is used in fire extinguishers.
  • Social Studies: Teach about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and the start of Fire Prevention Week. Follow up with a game-show-style quiz with pencil toppers as prizes.
  • English: Complete pages in a fire safety educational activities books with younger grades. Have older grades write scripts for a PSA on fire safety and then act them out.

Teaching Two Ways Out

Instruct students how to locate two ways out of every room in case of fire, and how to get out safely.

  • If you use a fire safety house trailer, pass out simple versions of its floor plan before entering. Have students circle two ways out and then locate the actual exits once inside.
  • Create safe, portable, free-standing frames for a door and a window. Use them to show students how to safely escape through doors and windows. Award “escapees” with glow bracelets.
  • Organize diorama contests where students must show two ways out of one or more rooms in their homes. Offer awards such as fire prevention backpacks stuffed with educational fire safety gifts.

Be a Year-Round Presence

Don’t let your department’s chance to educate and interact with school children stop at an annual visit or fire drill. Ask school and community summer camp administrators about year-round opportunities.

  • Identify school events (sports games, scholastic awards ceremonies, etc.) that firefighters can attend to show support and share a quick fire safety message. Pass out fire safety stickers, badges, or temporary tattoos.
  • Look into setting up video-chat sessions with classes or camp groups to present a fire safety lesson or reminder.
  • Shoot one- to two-minute videos featuring fire safety practices. Forward them to school or camp administrators with a request to show them to students.
  • Offer primary students a fire safety coloring and activities calendar. Have them mark down kid-friendly events you will offer during the upcoming year.

Reach Out to Teens

Middle and high school students are taking on responsibilities (babysitting, cooking, part-time jobs) that make fire safety expertise especially important. Empower teens to help keep themselves and others safe.

  • Share information through displays at scholastic fairs, on social media (including Facebook and Twitter), at career days, or at junior leadership club meetings.
  • Offer special training opportunities for teen babysitters. Teach them important skills such as how to use a fire extinguisher, assess burns, perform CPR, or scan for fire hazards. Give participants travel first aid kits.
  • Invite teens to educate their peers on the dangers of fire setting through a poster or webpage contest. Recognize all entries with a prize such as a silicone bracelet or drawstring backpack with a fire safety slogan.

Through creative outreach activities reinforced with fun, educational tools, you can help all students in your community make fire safety awareness and preparedness a priority!