School Visits

Many children and in particular boys, may develop an interest in fire or playing with lights or matches at some stage. It is accepted by Health proffessionals that an interest in fire by children is quite normal but care is necessary to ensure that your child doesn't get burnt or damages anything as a result of this curiosity.


There are various reasons why children start fires, some of these reasons include:

  • Curiosity and fascination is accepted as part of normal behavioral learning.
  • Some children may start fires as part of individual attention seeking.
  • Peer pressure from other children may have an element of malicious mischief that include setting fires.
  • Health professionals advise that some children may have an unhealthy fire fascination that will require professional health treatment.

Children are usually unaware that a tiny flame can grow into a dangerous fire.

What can you do to help prevent your child developing fire fascination?

  • Install smoke alarms and as a family, test them regularly and change the batteries annually.
  • Involve your children in developing a home escape plan and practice it together regularly.
  • Always store matches and lighters in a secure place out of reach or sight of young children.
  • Teach your children that fire is NOT A TOY BUT IS A USEFUL TOOL for cooking or heating when used safely and responsibly by adults..
  • DO NOT ASK children to get matches or lighters for you. Children learn by example and often mimic adult behavior.
  • Encourage young children to bring any matches or lighters they find to you and praise them for acting responsibly.
  • Do not ignore evidence of playing with fire such as burnt clothing or burns or matches or lighters in pockets of children


Teach older children how to use matches & fire safely, and stress to them the importance of only lighting fires in the presence of adults.

  • Remember that smoke from a fire can confuse you and that you cannot see in smoke.
  • When asleep you will not smell smoke and it will in fact put you into deeper sleep.
  • If you have escaped from a fire, remember to stay out and dial immediately 911.
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