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As the birthday celebration of Sparky® winds down, NFPA would like to call your attention to another helpful resource that educators, parents, and the fire service can use to engage younger generations.


The “Connect the Dots” print-out is just one of several entertaining tools that we highlighted this week in our birthday blog series. The primary focus of this particular piece is to build brain power and challenge kids in mathematics. Children are encouraged to complete math problems so that they can connect the dots and reveal an important life-saving device.


There are two different activity sheets – one that is geared to younger children with less complicated addition and subtraction problems, and a second for older students with more challenging calculations.


As Sparky checks off year 68 and his festivities wrap up, NFPA encourages educators to keep sharing brain-building tips and tools with children all year long. Visit for easy-to-use resources and key safety messages.


As the 68th birthday celebration of Sparky the Fire Dog® continues this week, NFPA encourages educators and first responders to share the upbeat video, “Firefighters are On Their Way” and inform children about basic firefighter responsibilities and emergency response sequences.


Many kids love firefighters. They enjoy learning about their gear and the ways that first responders jump into action when they are needed most. In this fun-filled video, artists on piano, guitar, and drums set the toe-tapping tone for former PBS Kids Personality Steve Songs to sing a lively tune. Sparky also plays a role in the jam session – sharing important safety messages throughout the clip that runs 4-plus minutes.


Check out the video at Sparky School House – and share it with the children in your community. You won’t be able to get the tune out of your head!


NFPA’s Sparky & the Case of The Missing Smoke Alarms is an entertaining app that teaches children essential messages about fire prevention through creative storytelling and real-world safety questions. The tool is just one of several resources being highlighted this week as America’s favorite fire dog celebrates his 68th birthday.


The curious tale chronicles the exploits that Sparky® and his friends undertake when they learn that a loved one’s home is missing its smoke alarms. Users can choose to read the story on their own or select an audio storytelling feature to learn about the foursome’s search for the lifesaving devices, and their identification of other safety mishaps along the way.


“We all need smoke alarms in our homes,” Sparky reminds the app users. “They let us know if there is a fire.”


To that end, the app emphasizes the importance of people paying attention to their surroundings and being well-informed about safety measures by asking questions such as, “Why does a home need more than one smoke alarm?” or “What would you do in this situation?”


To find out what Sparky and the gang discovered during their search for the missing smoke alarms, to learn lifelong fire safety lessons, and to access helpful materials for educating school-age children, please download Sparky & the Case of The Missing Smoke Alarms at App Store, Google Play, and Amazon.


Sparky’s birthday may have been yesterday, but the fun continues this week as the iconic fire dog shares fun, educational resources designed to help inform children about fire prevention.


NFPA’s floppy-eared mascot points to an informative and interactive tool today that is well-loved by parents, teachers, and kids. The Sparky Birthday Surprise App includes a storybook that shows the fire pup celebrating his birthday with friends while highlighting fire safety tips in an entertaining and engaging manner. This section has a read aloud feature, and uses different sound effects that help children better understand life safety situations and emergency notifications. For example, the sound of a smoke alarm is accentuated so that children become more familiar with that piece of life-saving fire protection equipment, and the steps that families need to take when smoke alarm sounds are featured, including:


  • Know the sound of the smoke alarm.
  • If the smoke alarm sounds, remember to get outside and stay outside.
  • Once you are outside, go to your meeting place.


When learning is fun, kids are more apt to retain knowledge and know how to respond if an emergency occurs. The Sparky Birthday Surprise App reiterates important lessons throughout by asking users questions and providing answers. Additionally, there are games such as “Birthday Shapes,” “Piñata Counting,” and “Sparky Addition” that challenge kids to count, identify shapes, and build brain power. Those that love art will particularly enjoy the app’s “Paint” option. This helpful fire safety resource is available in English and Spanish; and can be downloaded via the App Store, Google Play, and Amazon.


Happy Birthday to Sparky!

Posted by vholub Employee Mar 18, 2019



Everybody’s favorite fire safety dog, Sparky, celebrates his 68th birthday today. Since 1951, Sparky has helped fire professionals, teachers, civic organizations, corporations, youth programs, and the media deliver invaluable messages about smoke alarms, escape planning, and seasonal safety considerations.


In honor of NFPA’s top dog teaching children and adults alike about fire and life safety for six-plus decades, we are highlighting Sparky’s journey and the different resources that have been developed to educate generations about fire prevention.


We start Sparky’s weeklong celebration by inviting you to read how he became America’s iconic fire dog in a storybook, “The Story of Sparky, The Fire Dog,” and by showing you a timeline of his life. As Sparky blows out the battery operated candles on his birthday cake, we ask that you take note of important fire and life safety messages, including:

  • Install working smoke alarms in every sleeping room, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement.
  • Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.
  • Make a home escape plan. Draw a map of each level of the home. Show all doors and windows and point to the two ways out of each room.
  • Plan and practice your escape drill with everyone in the home.


We have also created a visual walk down memory lane for you to enjoy and share with other Sparky fans. Check it out.

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