2009-01-27 gives great insights as to what you can do with a child or teenager who plays with fire. They mention:

Acknowledge the problem-- While firesetting is serious; in fact, deadly serious, we often need to look at it as a symptom of other problems. Discovering that a child is playing with fire is no time to look the other way. It can be the opportunity to assess what is happening or not happening in the childâs life.

If the parent has not done so already, the local fire department should be contacted and asked if they have a program for children who play with fire, staffed by persons who understand ADD and other learning disabilities. If not, a qualified mental health professional should be located. Says Most experts agree that the best way to understand why children set fires is by looking at the context and motivation for the behavior. There are four types of fire setting, and for each type, a different strategy is used to stop the behavior.

The first type is curiosity, usually found in three to seven year-old children. The child is curious and plays with fire to learn about it. Fire safety education is recommended.

Remember that basic fire safety principles can be taught and observed by parents. Keep matches and lighters out of reach and in a safe locked place. Alway buy lighters that have the child safety proof lighting mechanism. Don't associate fire with playing. Teach children how to properly use fire. When a child begins to experiment, they can run into problems and it may turn into a fascination.

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