Grade K-5 Search for Sparky | BCHydro Power Smart for Schools

Search for Sparky

Sparky the dog is lost. Can you help find him while remembering to stay safe around electrical hazards?

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30 mins


Sparky the dog is lost, and you can help find him by making safe, power smart choices. Your journey to find Sparky will take you through several real-life scenarios. The decisions you make along the way will help you learn about electrical safety. 



What you'll need

  • Screen and internet connection to play video
  • "Search for Sparky" interactive video

  1. Begin discussing that in B.C. we make electricity to power our lights by using falling water and hydroelectric dams. Share that electricity travels to our homes through power lines that are held up with power poles high above the ground. BC Hydro uses signs to warn us of any danger and keep us safe around electricity, and we need to do our part to stay safe by paying attention to these warnings and obeying the signs.
  2. Pull up the “Search for Sparky” interactive video to learn how to make safe choices while searching for Sparky. This can be done as a class, or students could work individually or in pairs on their own devices.
  3. Tell students that in the video there are real life scenarios, and they get to make choices with the goal of staying safe. Examples of the scenarios include safety around power poles, obeying posted warning signs and when to call 911. 
  4. Tell the students to follow the instructions, and make choices like turn left or right, stick together or split up, dive off the dock or don’t swim. As students search for Sparky, have them record 3 decisions they made along the way and what happened. 
  5. Once students find Sparky, have them create their own scenario of a possible danger when finding Sparky and how they can stay safe. Students could create a comic strip, draw a picture, or write a story to describe their scenario. Possible scenario ideas include avoiding flying a kite near power lines, staying away from transformer stations and not climbing trees close to power poles. 

Modify or extend this activity


Curriculum Fit

Physical and Health Education K, 1


  • Hazards and potentially unsafe situations

Curricular competencies

Social and community health
  • Identify and describe a variety of unsafe and/or uncomfortable situations

Physical and Health Education 2, 3, 4, 5


  • Strategies and skills to use in potentially hazardous or unsafe situations

Curricular competencies

Social and community health
  • Identify and describe avoidance or assertiveness strategies to use in unsafe and/or uncomfortable situations

Career Education K, 1, 2, 3


  • Connections to community
    • Roles and responsibilities at home, at school, and in the local community

Curricular competencies

  • Identify and appreciate the roles and responsibilities of people in their schools, families, and communities

Career Education 4, 5


  • Connections to community
    • Safety hazards and rules at school, at home, and in the community

Curricular competencies

  • Demonstrate safe behaviours in a variety of environments

English Language Arts K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5


  • Story: elements and structure of story

Curricular competencies

Comprehend and connect (reading, listening, viewing)
Create and communicate (writing, speaking, representing)

Teaching Notes

Electrical safety tips around power lines

  • Don't climb on power poles
  • Never fly kites near power lines
  • Stay away from broken or fallen power lines
  • Never touch or climb trees that are near power lines
  • Never touch big, metal transformer boxes with warning signs
  • Obey warning signs
  • Stay away from substations and power lines

Electrical safety, electricity and power lines 

Power lines are conductive meaning the electrical current runs through them with the least resistance. However if something makes contact with a live power line like a tree, kite, or ladder, the electrical current may flow to the ground. The place where the current touches the ground is the highest voltage and from that point the electrical current spreads out in irregular concentric circles. The voltage or electrical intensity decreases as it moves further from the source. A safe distance from the source of contact, like a downed power line, is 10 metres or more. 

Electricity has the ability to find its way through touch to get to the ground. If a tree branch gets tangled in a power line, the electrical current could travel through the branch and you to reach the ground. Birds do not get zapped when standing on a power line, however they would if they straddled two power lines, or touch their beak to the ground while standing on the power line.


  • Assess students’ ability to identify safe and dangerous scenarios outlined in the video.
  • Assess students’ knowledge of what to do if there is a dangerous situation, stay away and dial 911.
  • Assess students’ participation in the video game and creativity in demonstrating their own scenarios.

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