Updated: Jun 14, 2020
Laurel Tree Forest Kindergarten believes that proper use of fire is an important part of children’s learning.
Collecting tinder allows for multiple opportunities for learning. You can sort tinder by different sizes, compare sizes, learn about different types of woods and practice counting skills. When tending to a fire participants learn safety and build resilience. They learn to pay attention to their own needs as well as those around them. Participants learn to slow down and notice the environment around them. This can lead to the ability to do this in other contexts, such as the classroom environment. Participants learn about the power of fire and the many uses that it has. This leads to awareness around fire safety and how to avoid dangerous situations with fire.
At Laurel Tree Forest Kindergarten we begin having fires when the weather is cooling and the rains have begun. We have a covered fire area that allows for fires during rain. The covered fire area has been designed to allow for a wide area with seating at least five feet from the fire ring. Fires will not occur during very windy weather.
Fires will be made in a metal fire pit that will be removed after each use (to avoid use by others after school hours). The metal fire pit will be placed on concrete and all debris will be removed from the area.
Fires may also be built in the cob oven on the school campus.
Fires may be made when Laurel Tree Forest Kindergarten is at the Oyster Beach property. Permission has been given to make fires by the owners of the property. The fire will be completely extinguished when leaving the site.
A benefits/risk assessment for fire has been completed and reviewed by all staff. Safety with fire is practiced with participants prior to the use of a fire. Participants are taught how to go around the outside of the fire area when changing their seating. No more than two participants are allowed next to the fire for adding wood. Participants will have the permission of an adult before adding wood to the fire.
Prior to building a fire the area is cleared off all debris and tripping hazards. Two buckets of water are placed at the exits to the fire ring. A first aid kit, fire blanket and fire gloves are available close to the fire. A fire extinguisher is available in the outdoor cubby house (located between the two areas where fire will occur on the school campus). Fire is built at least 5 feet away from the seating area.
An adult will be present at the fire at all times. The fire will be completely extinguished using water over the top and dunking any remaining wood in a bucket of water prior to leaving the site. The fire ring will be set out of boundaries if still hot. The fire ring will be removed at the end of the day.
Activity: Fire (Participant making a fire using a flint and steel)
Benefits of the Activity
● Participants learn responsibility/boundaries when near a fire
● Participants learn safe use of fire
● Participants learn perseverance when learning to start their own fire
● Participants learn to follow agreed upon agreements for safety
●Participants learn how to prepare meals on a fire
●Participants stay warm on cold days
You can use a fire for boiling, baking, frying and roasting.
Place liquid to be boiled in safe pan or tea pot. No plastic parts, avoid aluminium.
Put pot/teapot either on a grate or in a sturdy spot between/on top of logs
Things to make using boiling: tea, hot chocolate, hot cider, soup, broth
Form dough around a stick or place on grate or in a pan (dutch oven works good)
Cook over hot coals. Avoid putting in direct flame. Keep moving (turning/flipping) until dough is baked through.
Things to make using baking: damper bread, pizza bread, hand pies, corn bread, pancakes
Use cast iron pan. Add oil to the pan. Add items to be fried. Hold over the fire or rest on a log. Use a tripod cooker if available.
Things to make using frying: veggie burgers, veggie stir fry, fried hand pies
Roasting: Place item near hot coals. Turn. Veggies could be placed in a pan or on a stick (mushroom work well)
Things to make using roasting: hot dogs could be on a whittled stick, roasted corn (leave corn in the husk), bananas & chocolate (cut banana in half, squish chocolate inside, put next to the fire, hot dogs, veggies, apples
Please click on the file below to see our full risk assessment