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Thread: Obstacle course

  1. #1
    Forum Member ltkeith25's Avatar
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    Question Obstacle course

    Has anybody's dept ever done an obstacle course at their local schools for fire prevention week? It would be geared toward 3rd & 4th grade age kids. I might do one but could use some ideas on how to set up a quick and easy one in our elem. school's gym. Any help would be great!!


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    MembersZone Subscriber KevinFFVFD's Avatar
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    I have never personally seen an obstacle course for the purpose of public education, only for firefighter certifications and classes. However, I would recommend that if you do build an obstacle course do not design it in a manner that resembles ones used in firefighter training. I would refrain from building obstacles that “trap” the children and force them to make decisions on how to get out. This could cause the child to become fearful and will have the exact opposite effect other than the one you were trying to portray. Plus scaring kids these days is frowned upon by society, oh well.

    Just make a very simple maze where children have to fell the doors to see if they are hot and decide whether or not to open the door, things like that.

    Do you plan on this maze being built in a fixed location or one that is portable? Because depending on how you design it determines that type of situation you can build upon.

  3. #3
    IACOJ BOD FlyingKiwi's Avatar
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    Lt

    Have a look at these.

    Start of Firewise

    Firewise Kiddies site


    Building an "obstacle course" goes against every single piece of research, child education methods, and the lessons learnt from the job.

    Children WILL try to find somewhere to hide if they have no alternate idea of what is the "right thing to do"

    Teach them to "Get Down, Get Out" without an obstacle course, focus on the message of safety. "Get Down, Get Out, Meet at a safe place."

    Do not try and confuse them, keep it simple, repeat it, reinforce it, play the game of crawling straight out the door on hands and knees.

    Get them introduced to smoke alarms, teach them to give matches and lighters to parents etc.

    Obstacle courses are something teachers will use for day to day fun and fitness lessons for children.

    They should NEVER be a focus of a Firefighters lesson.

    Just my 1 cents worth.
    Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

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    I'm not sure whay type of obstacle course you had in mind, but what we did was set up a small bedroom and have some of the kids do an exit drill in the home.

    The alarm sounds that crawl to a door and it is hot they crawl out a window and meet at their spiecal meeting place.

    Props needed
    small bed
    smoke detector
    window mounted on base
    small door mounted on base
    smoke cloud on two poles where the child has to crawl under it
    fake tree
    escape ladder

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    We have used a blanket to simulate the smoke layer. Stretch blanket between four poles or people about three feet off of the floor. Have kids lay down on a bed. When they hear a smoke detector have them roll out of bed and crawl under blanket towards a door or window.

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    google kids firefighter challenge and look through those results this might also help (http://www.millersvillefire.com/artm...ticle_85.shtml)

  7. #7
    Forum Member ltkeith25's Avatar
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    Maybe "obstacle course" was the wrong coice of words, more like a maze set up at the schools gym. I want them to see what it would be like to exit a home filling with smoke. I would like to set-up a door, bed and a window and then see how the kids would react. I was also thinking about getting goggles and having them shaded to simulate smoke. Another option I was thinking about was to have them follow a hose line after the checked the door(hose would simulate a wall) though a maze like set-up-under a large table over some pillows or matting and having a wye with another line going in a different direction, but telling them beore they start that they should stay with the hose on the right/left. Nothing scary or difficult for them, just giving them a different point of view on how they might have to escape.
    Last year we showed them how the "Jaws" worked on a car, year before was extinguisher demo. The kids would be 8-10yrs. old. Every grade gets different lessons.Pre-K-what a fireman wears, 1st-stop, drop & roll, how smoke detectors work,etc. 2nd-911, whats an emergency or not. All grades are also talked to about how to react if a fire is in their house, escape plans.
    I just like to try different things with the kids. I think videos are a waste of time & money when teaching about fire safety, I like to have them participate as much as possible. But I just don't get enough time during the school hours to put on a big demo. I appreciate all the comments & ideas!!
    STAY SAFE!!!

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    Is fire prevention big in your area? We have a fire safety trailer much like this one (http://www.firesafetyhouse.com/332b.htm) that our county fire association paid for as well as our counties city departments. We can smoke up any of the 3 rooms includes a bedroom upstairs we can also simulate bad weather and weather announcements during tornado season around here.

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