Tips on Teaching Your Kids About Wildfires

Tips on Teaching Your Kids About Wildfires
Everyone can do their part to help prevent wildfires—even kids. To start the conversation, follow these tips on teaching your kids about wildfires.

Currently, humans stand as the number one cause of wildfires in the United States by a significant margin. In order to reduce the ever-growing number of wildfires that occur each year and the destruction that accompanies them, it’s important to educate all members of society on fire safety. This includes the future of our country—children. To start this important conversation with our nation’s youth, follow these tips on teaching your kids about wildfires.

Talk About Why Wildfires Occur

Understanding why wildfires occur is the first step to preventing them. As such, it’s important to open a dialog with your children about some of the key causes of wildfires. As previously stated, humans are the leading cause of wildfires in the US. Some of the most common ways that humans cause wildfires include leaving bonfires unattended, discarding lit cigarettes, setting off fireworks in wooded areas, and burning large amounts of debris. Although most wildfires are caused by humans, they can also form as a result of natural events, such as lightning. Discussing these causes with your children using age-appropriate language will help instill them with a prevention mindset for the future.

Teach Them How They Can Help

While children can’t start a job as a wildland firefighter and begin battling blazes on the front line, they can still make a difference in helping prevent wildfires from occurring. Some ways that kids can help prevent wildfires include:

  • Telling someone if they notice an unattended campfire
  • Never leaving candles unattended in their bedrooms
  • Not playing with fire
  • Not starting a bonfire unless accompanied by an adult
  • Pointing out smoke or other signs of a potential fire when they see them

Discuss Safety Measures To Take in the Event of a Wildfire

When talking about natural disasters such as wildfires, it’s normal for kids to get a little scared. To help quell their anxiety, talk to them about the safety measures they can take to protect themselves in the event of a wildfire. For example, you may consider walking them through an evacuation plan and practicing it with them a few times. Doing so can help make children feel safer and allows them to respond more quickly and confidently in the event that an actual wildfire occurs.

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