One of the things I appreciate about being able to homeschool, is the ability to step outside the box with our curriculum and teach life skills.
Something that I feel is important for all families to learn is how to be Fire Smart. I know a lot of elementary school children visit fire stations or have fire fighters visit their school for presentations, but how many parents follow up with what’s sent home with their kids? I know I never did when Amber was in public school.
By using online resources, I have been able to approach fire safety on a personal level, adjusted accordingly for our home.
The whole family should be able to spot fire hazards in the home. So walk around from room to room, see if you’re children recognize the potential for where fires could start. Candles left out on wooden surfaces, or places where they could get knocked over, space heaters too close to curtains, or a frayed electrical cord.
Then progress to a solution for those hazards. Don’t burn candles or make sure they are on a stable surface away from anything flammable. Move the space heater so there is a couple of feet clearance around all sides, and never keep it on while sleeping. Throw away (or recycle if you can) the item with the frayed cord and purchase a new one that is UL certified.
Have the whole family take responsibility to be aware of when the batteries in the smoke detectors need to be changed, and plan and practice a fire escape route.
Even the youngest children should be involved in your escape planning and practice. The more the family drills it, the less likely anyone will panic if by chance a fire ever happens in your home.
Like many families we live in a multi-level building, which presents unique challenges to address when planning safety and escape routes.
In our favor, because of building codes, we have sprinklers in all of our rooms, and in the building hallways on either end are fire extinguishers.
Seeing as all our rooms are on the second floor though, we need to ensure that we have rope ladders accessible, in case we need to exit through the windows.
It is also a good idea to teach your children how to deal with different types of fires they may encounter. For example ask them what they would do if there was a grease fire in the kitchen.
There are a lot of online resources to help you design a lesson plan and an escape route to use in your homeschool. You could also call your fire station and insurance company and see if they have material for use as well.
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