Join us online every Tuesday and Friday at 3:30 pm for Little New-Yorkers @ Home. Check our calendar for registration links.
Hello, Little New-Yorkers! This week, meet the John J. Harvey, a talented and brave fireboat who lent a hand on one of New York City’s toughest days. Maira Kalman wrote and illustrated this story, and in addition to introducing us to the Harvey and fireboats, her story helps us understand how everyone’s effort is vital when there is important work to do.
After listening to the story, bring out your artist tools and get ready to create a busy fireboat of your own!
Firefighters use all kinds of tools and clothing to fight fires and protect their bodies. Let’s explore some of the objects in the New-York Historical Society’s collection!
Look closely at this statue of New York Fire Chief Harry Howard.
Now examine these photos of equipment and clothing – match them to Howard’s statue! Use your detective eyes to notice some objects that aren’t on Harry Howard – how do you think they are used? (Hint: they are also important for firefighters.)
Follow along with this post to construct your own boat with us at home and don’t forget to join us live every Tuesday and Friday at 3:30 pm where we sing a special Little New-Yorkers hello song, do silly stretches and exercises, and read a storybook, all from the comfort of your living room.
- Fireboat template (Print Template here)
- Something to color with pencils, markers, crayons, paint
- Tape or stapler
- Tissue paper or cotton balls (optional stuffing)
*A note on supplies: If you don’t have exactly the supplies listed, improvise! These projects are designed to be versatile, so feel free to use whatever materials and tools you have at home. And if your final product looks different than what you see here, that’s wonderful too.
STEP 1: Color in both fireboats
The two fireboats can match, or be delightfully different! If you want to name your boat, write the name on the hull.
STEP 2: Cut out the fireboats
Carefully cut around the outside lines, keeping the two boats attached at the straight line on the bottom. Make sure you don’t cut the two boats apart!
STEP 3: Fold your fireboat
Fold along the long straight line on the bottom – so it’s the shape of a crunchy taco shell!
STEP 4: Stuff your fireboat
If you want your fireboat to be three dimensional, place some soft filling – tissue paper or cotton balls for example – in the middle of the fold. Kind of like the beans in your taco!
STEP 5: Tape, staple, or glue your fireboat together
If you have stuffing in your fireboat, taping or stapling will work best. If your fireboat will be flat, glue will work just fine!
Once you are all done decorating and constructing your fireboat, think of all the ways she can help out other boats and vehicles in your home!
We hope you enjoy this activity! Share your creations in the comments below, on social media @nyhistory, or during our online sessions of Little New Yorkers @ Home Tuesdays and Fridays at 3:30 pm. See you then!