Guy Fawkes Night – also known as Bonfire Night or Fireworks Night – is a fun time for all the family, and you can make the occasion even more special with these Guy Fawkes activities and craft ideas for children.
The History of Bonfire Night for Kids
On the 5th November 1605, Guy Fawkes attempted to blow up the Houses of Parliament in London by placing barrels of gunpowder in the basement. Fawkes was alleged to have been upset at the treatment of Catholics by the government, and set out to kill King James I. Fawkes' plan was foiled, and today we celebrate the dissolution of the plan by lighting fireworks – a way of mocking Guy Fawkes – and burning a ‘Guy’ (a dummy of Guy Fawkes) on bonfires.
A fun and easy rhyme that’s simple for kids to remember and recite is ‘Remember, Remember the Fifth of November’. It’s also highly educational, condensing the history of the night right down into a catchy little song:
Remember, remember the fifth of November, Gunpowder, treason and plot, We see no reason, Why gunpowder treason, Should ever be forgot!
Bonfire Night Facts for Kids
- A rocket can launch up to 150 metres in the air!
- Metal salts give fireworks their amazing colours!
- Guy Fawkes is believed to have been born as early as 1570!
- Sparklers are FIVE times hotter than cooking oil – always supervise kids!
- Most fireworks injuries are caused by rockets – be careful!
Bonfire Night Quiz
A bonfire night quiz is an excellent way to teach children more about Guy Fawkes, and about Fireworks Night itself. Use the facts above to create your own quiz, and challenge your kids to draw upon their knowledge of the night. If you’re hosting a party, consider making the quiz into a friendly, light-hearted competition, perhaps with a prize for the winning team.
Bonfire Night Activities for Kids
Bonfire night is exciting, but we all know that kids don’t always have very long attention spans! To prevent boredom, here are some great activities to keep them entertained all night long:
Bonfire Night Baking
Whether you’re hosting a party or just having a quiet family celebration, whipping up some bonfire night foods with the help of the little ones is a great way to make the night even more special. Dunking the end of a chocolate finger biscuit into a bowl of melted white chocolate, and then dipping it into colourful sprinkles makes a fun (and tasty!) edible firework, or you can make bonfire cupcakes by topping a chocolate cupcake with orange icing and placing chocolate sticks onto the icing to form a pyramid shape.
You could also the top cupcakes with popping candy for mini explosions in your mouth! It’s best to make sure your child wears an apron when helping out in the kitchen, but if their clothes do get a little messy, you can always check out our articles on how to remove chocolate stains and grease stains for a helping hand with the laundry.
If you’re having a bonfire night party with friends, entrust the little ones with the much sought after title of ‘bonfire night safety inspector’. While they may not be able to tend to the bonfire or hold sparklers, they can still feel involved and play an important role for the night. It’s a good opportunity to teach your kids about firework safety – like not keeping fireworks in pockets, and keeping pets safely indoors. Click here for a simple guide on firework safety that you can share with them. They’ll love making sure everyone complies with the rules and you could even consider making a personalised badge to really make them feel authoritative.
Bonfire Night Crafts for Kids
Crafting is great for kids – it encourages them to think outside the box and allows them the chance to experiment – and bonfire night is a great time of year for getting creative!
Make a Poster
The great thing about bonfire night is that it’s really vibrant and colourful, so making posters with brightly coloured crayons, chalks, pens, or paints is an activity that really lends itself to this occasion. Encourage your kids to draw or paint their own firework scenes, capturing all those colours that they see against the dark sky – black sugar paper can make a great backdrop. Don’t worry too much if your kids get messy on Bonfire night – whether they’re covered in paint or have been showing off their artwork in the garden, we’ve got some great tips on paint stain removal and removing grass and mud stains.
Homemade Toddler-Safe Sparklers
If your kids want to get involved in all the firework excitement in a fun and safe way – one option for making bonfire night for kids special is to help them to make their very own pretend ‘sparklers’. All you need is some regular kitchen tin foil, some glue, and either a bit of glitter, some sequins or some sparkly, stick-on gems from a craft shop. Rip the tin foil into long strips, glue the strips together about one third of the way up, and allow the longer lengths to cascade down – a bit like a bunch of droopy flowers. Apply glue to the very tips of the foil, and sprinkle with glitter, sequins, or gems for a dazzling finish that’s just the like real thing.
Tip! If any glue gets accidentally spilt on clothes during your craft session, check out these tips on how to get glue out of clothes.
There you go, Guy Fawkes Night for kids isn’t just about watching fireworks displays – there’s so many more fun activities and crafts you can do at home to celebrate the occasion!