Last Friday Pre-school children were very excited as the time had arrived for their trip to Tooting Fire Station. We were very pleased to have a couple of non-Friday children and their parents join us.
Tooting Firefighters made sure that everyone had an unforgettable experience. They took the children in small groups to the back of the fire engine where they tried on the brand new helmets which have a light on top! Everyone exited to the side and were shown how the equipment is stored. Just imagine their little faces peering at the hoses, wrenches etc! Another Firefighter showed the children how they get the ladder down from the roof, and then it was time to play Firefighter!
The group went to the car park and were showed the hydrants- look out for yellow signs with an ‘H’ on them when you’re out and about. Once the hose was attached to the hydrant each child had a turn, with professional help, at aiming the hose towards a yellow plastic chair- which went flying across the car park with the force of the water.
Next, the fun continued within the fire station, a Grade II listed heritage building no less! It was time to find out more about the whole process. One of the Firefighters demonstrated how to use the firepole amidst shouts of, ‘Come on Jody!’ Apparently Jody was a bit slow and the slide was repeated- this time Jody shot down the pole.
So what happens when a call is received? Firstly the station lights go on and an alarm sounds- thankfully not the screeching alarm from days gone by. The Firefighters are told which truck/crew will be needed so the right people make their way to the fire engine. They are given the computer printout with the address and are able to check the wall map. The children saw both the computer and map.
Finally, the children went back outside and lined up against the wall and listened to the different siren sounds. Following this, they had their photo taken against the fire engine.
The children absolutely loved their visit and, as a thank you, left the Firefighters with some specially made hot chocolate kits to drink in the station on these cold Autumn nights.
We have followed up their learning in Pre-school by discussing the outing and creating a wall display featuring 999 and other fire-related information. We believe this was a very valuable educational exercise and enjoyed giving our children first-hand experience within the local community. A huge THANK YOU to all at Tooting Fire Station!