May 4 – International Firefighters Day

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About the Holiday

International Firefighters’ Day was established to commemorate the dedication of firefighters to their communities and the sacrifices they make in dangerous situations to protect and rescue those they have pledged to help. It’s also a day in which current and past firefighters can be thanked for their contributions. If you know a professional or volunteer firefighter, let them know how much you appreciate their service. Today is also a good day to check your smoke detectors.

This is the Firefighter

Written by Laura Godwin | Illustrated by Julian Hector

 

“This is the firefighter. / These are his clothes. / This is his truck / And this is its hose.” With a lilting, catchy rhyme This Is the Firefighter takes children along as firefighters answer the bell at the station and rush to the scene of a fire. When the firefighters reach the burning building, flames are shooting from the fourth and fifth floor windows, and a crowd has assembled across the street.

The firefighters hurry up the stairs, knock down an apartment door with their ax, and rescue the people inside. With the building fully engulfed in flames, a worried couple appear at a window. But they needn’t be afraid; the firefighters know just what to do: “This is the ladder, / attached to the truck, / that reaches the lady / and man who are stuck.”

But there is one more rescue to be made. As the crowd and the news media watch nervously from below, a firefighter “climbs through the heat.” In a moment: “This is the rescue. / This is the cheer / that roars through the crowd / when the signal’s ‘All clear.’”

Out of the crush of people a little girl runs to hug her kitten, which is being carefully carried in the hands of the firefighter. Now that the fire is out and everyone is safe, a new light glimmers in the sky: “This is the smoke / as it drifts far away. / This is the glow / at the end of the day.”

Newly available as a board book, Laura Godwin’s look at a busy day in the life of firefighters will delight small children who are fascinated by the work of the men and women who protect and save lives under the most dangerous conditions. Godwin’s rhyming story contains just the right mix of reality and surprise to represent these heroes well for young children.

Julian Hector’s bright, detailed illustrations will satisfy children with a thirst for knowledge about everything connected to fire fighting. The fire station is clearly depicted. As the crew maintains the fire truck, kids can see the hoses, dials, and connectors that power the rig. When the alarm rings, the crew slides down the pole and rushes to put on their safety gear as their Dalmatian runs ahead. The scenes of the city and the burning building, along with worried faces of its residents and the onlookers on the street are particularly effective. Kids will also be alert to the secondary story of the little girl and her kitten that progresses from page to page and will cheer at its conclusion.

Young children will want to linger over these pages and hear the story again and again!

Ages 2 – 5

Disney-Hyperion, 2015 | ISBN 978-1484707333

International Firefighters Day Activity

 

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Create a Soft Book, Page 4 – Fire Truck

 

Fire trucks are always fascinating with their hoses, ladders, and loud siren. Add a red rig to your book with this printable Fire Truck Template. See Sunday’s Post for how to make the book, the cover, and Page 1. Page 2 can be found here, and here’s Page 3!

Supplies

  • Printable Fire Truck Template
  • Red, yellow, black, white, and blue felt, fleece or foam
  • Adhesive felt or foam letters
  • Fabric glue
  • Scissors

celebrate-picture-books-picture-book-review-firetruck

Directions

  1. Cut out the sections of the firetruck and doors from the red felt, fleece, or foam
  2. Cut out the windows and wheel centers from the white felt, fleece, or foam
  3. Cut out the sections of the ladder and the door handles from the yellow felt, fleece, or foam. Also cut out a background from the yellow felt, fleece, or foam, leaving a small rim around the edge
  4. Cut out the siren from the blue felt, fleece, or foam
  5. Cut out the tires from the black felt,  fleece, or foam
  6. Assemble the truck on the yellow background and glue it in place.
  7. Glue the fire truck to the page
  8. Attach the letters, making sure they are firmly stuck. If they are not, use fabric glue

Join me again tomorrow!

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