October is Fire Safety Month! – A Note From the Teacher
A Note From The Teacher
by Jennifer Cummings, M.Ed.
October is Fire Safety Month!
The month of October usually brings thoughts of fall leaves and Halloween to every family with school-aged children. However, just as important to know is that October is also Fire Safety Awareness month. Often schools will use this opportunity to inform kids about what firefighters do for a community, how to be safe in case of a fire emergency, and how to prevent accidental fires.
Parents can support the work done in schools, and this is an important time for families to take time to teach children directly about fire safety as well as make emergency plans in case there ever is a fire in the home.
First, children should know the importance of never playing with lighters, matches, or any other fire starting device.
While older kids can use these tools with supervision, children of any age should never be allowed unsupervised access to these items.Simple curiosity and lack of knowledge can lead to disastrous consequences when children and matches interact. Make sure to have flammable devices well away from easy access by little hands.
Next, talk to your children about what your family’s plan is in case of an emergency.
No one likes to think of their home being involved in a fire, but pre-planning is vital in case of a fire. Show each child multiple ways out of rooms in the house and discuss the best way to leave safely, crawling along the ground.
Discuss what to do if they can’t leave a room, too. Finally, pick a family meeting place that is away from the home, but easily recognizable to everyone; having a meeting place will allow everyone to find each other amidst the panic of an emergency. Practice as a family, making a game out of getting out of the house in the fastest time possible, just to reinforce the plan.
Finally, cooperate with your child’s school to plan a time where the class can meet firefighters and ask questions.
While most kids have seen firefighters in trucks or near a station, these friendly people look much different when fully suited in fire gear.
By asking the school to invite a firefighter to come into the classroom with their gear, kids get an opportunity to see these people close up; this can help to reduce the fear of the firefighters who may respond to a fire emergency.
Fire safety for kids is an important set of skills that need to be cooperatively reinforced by home and school in order to have the maximum benefit. Talk to your child’s teacher to learn what the school is doing to support Fire Safety Awareness Month, and take the time to reinforce the lesson in your own home as well.
No program at school?
Take the opportunity to work with school administrators, staff, and the local fire department to establish a program.
Everyone’s safety is improved with community cooperation during October!
Thanks to everyone who reads our column regularly. We look forward to sharing new ideas and advice with you each month. Remember- have a question?
"I believe that families' involvement in their child's education is one of the key ingredients to creating a successful school experience for children. Keeping parents informed about school-related issues helps parents and teachers work together for the best possible outcomes for their children. Learning together makes learning fun - for everyone!" - Jennifer Cummings.
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