Firework Safety

“I wouldn’t want another family to have to go through what we have. When I think how relatively minor her burns are, and how much pain she has been through, it’s terrifying.” Maisie’s mother

There’s no substitute for good adult supervision when it comes to preschoolers and firework safety.

But you can start teaching young children how to stay safe around bonfires, fireworks and sparklers.

Download and share our simple safety messages and our activity ideas for early years.

Safety messages

  • Fireworks are exciting, but they can be very dangerous and can hurt you. Listen to your grown-up about where is a safe place to stand.

  • Never touch a firework. Don’t pick up a firework after it has been used.

  • Wear your gloves when you hold your sparkler and keep it away from your body.

  • It’s not a good idea to hold more than one sparkler at once.

  • Keep your sparkly sparkler safely away from other people and don’t run around with it.

  • Don’t throw your sparkler in case it hits someone.

  • Once your sparkler is finished, put it into a bucket of water, don’t pick it back up. It stays hot for a long time and can burn you.

  • Leave your dressing up clothes at home on fireworks night, wrap up warm instead.

  • Stand well away from the bonfire and stay close to the grown-ups.

  • Don’t be tempted to throw things into the bonfire or poke at it with sticks.

  • If you’re going to a firework display, hold hands with your grown-up and stay with them all the time.

  • If you catch your clothes on a flame, don’t panic – STOP, DROP and ROLL:
    • STOP what you are doing.
    • DROP to the ground and cover your face with your hands.
    • ROLL over and over to put out the flames.

  • Practice your STOP, DROP and ROLL before your fireworks celebrations.

Activity ideas

  • Build on your work teaching children about hot and cold. Using pictures of hot things (including sparklers, fireworks, bonfires) and cold things (including a bucket of water to put used sparklers in) develop some simple games around matching/difference e.g. pairs, snap, spot the difference.

  • Encourage children to make safety posters. You can print out pictures for children to use. Or use their bonfire night paintings and crafts as part of a fireworks safety display in your setting.

  • Use circle time to discuss firework safety. Ask children questions, e.g.
    • What should you wear on your hands if you are holding a sparkler?
    • Should you run around when you are holding a sparkler?
    • What should you do with a sparkler when it has gone out?
    • You must never touch fireworks. Why not?
    • If one of the fireworks does not go off, should you pick it up?
    • Why should you stand well away from the bonfire?

  • Role play children sitting at a safe distance behind a rope around a firepit or pretend bonfire.

  • When clothes catch fire, a child’s instinct is to run. So role play STOP, DROP and ROLL. Let children start running, then ask them to stop, drop to the ground, cover their face with their hands, and roll over a few times to put out the pretend flames.

Download and print these lessons for little ones here.


More information on firework safety

Find out how to buy fireworks safely and read our top tips for a safe firework display at home.

Hear what can go wrong and find out what to do in an emergency, including how to react if clothes catch fire and first aid for burns.

Download and share a free firework safety leaflet and social media assets.