Light your Fire

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

What a hit!

Our new adventure activity "Light your Fire!!", (which was released for the June/July school holidays) was a huge success! It will feature in our September school holiday program too.



"Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire."


Kids have a natural open curiosity about fire.

As part of Mt Barney Lodge’s Nature Play Program, we channel this interest into an opportunity for a learning experience in the outdoors, to learn about the properties and principles of fire, to recognise and collect a variety of natural fire-starting materials (instead of resorting to un-eco petroleum-based firelighters), and of course loads of safety practice.

In western cultures, kids have been traditionally been “kept safe” by excluding them from the use of matches, lighters, and other fire-starting tools. However are we fighting a losing battle? Even with the best efforts from parents, most kids still want to play with fire. Kids who don’t satisfy their curiosity may light fires in secret and become a danger to themselves and others.

Fire has been integral to our evolution as a highly intelligent, information using species. Fire served as protection, warmth and a means to a higher quality diet, which may have allowed our pre-human ancestors to develop bigger brains.

Considering fire has been a survival tool for humans for millennia, and that natural selection may even have favoured individuals who learned how to master fire early, maybe our children are pre-programmed to play with fire?! Looking at “birthday candle syndrome” … it seems that way!

Mt Barney Lodge has developed a supervised activity for primary school-aged kids to understand, explore and safely practice fire-lighting skills. This interactive and hands on activity teaches participants how to get a fire going with matches and a lighter, and then progresses to techniques that do not need matches and use only natural materials. We do this by gathering the right materials from onsite and then each participant gets the opportunity to use a flint and steel (actually a Ferrocerium Rod, otherwise known as a ferro rod)to light their fire.

Participants will learn that lighting a fire carries great responsibility and are well briefed in safety.

Following the “Light Your Fire” activity, kids can practice their skills in the designated open fireplaces in the campground – Mt Barney Lodge is one of the few campgrounds that still allows open fires. The kids can then continue to practice and use fire as a tool when used safely and responsibly. They can indulge their curiosity and learn about fire without feeling the need to do so in secret.

Like most skills, practice makes perfect!


This new interactive and hands on activity teaches participants how to get a fire going without any matches and using only natural materials.

We start this activity by gathering the right materials from onsite and then each participant gets the opportunity to use a flint and steel to light their fire.

It’s not as easy as it looks!

Participants will learn that lighting a fire carries great responsibility and is guided by our qualified and experienced outdoor leaders.


Cost: $20 per person (Includes morning/afternoon tea, first aid equipment and public liability insurance,)

Age: 8 to 14 year olds. Due to nature of activity, strict minimum age applies and is not negotiable.

Requirement for group numbers: 4-12 people

Duration of Activity: 1.5hrs

When: See our school holiday adventure activity program

Meeting Place: the Office

What to bring: Hat, wear sun screen and closed in shoes

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