If you've ever been around kids, you've seen how they always want to be part of the action. That goes for setting off fireworks, too. When there's a loud, shiny thing to play with, they want in on the fun.
Want to include your favorite little pyromaniacs in your next fireworks display? You totally can! Here's our guide to age-appropriate explosions for kids who want to get pyrotechnical.
For the Littlest Pyros
For kids in pre-K through fifth grade, “safe and sane” fireworks are the way to go. These fun-sized fireworks are sure to keep your kids entertained for hours on end.
Novelty Snaps and Poppers
If you want to get your little one in on the fun, snaps are the best starter firework. They go by many names, like pop-pops, snappers, bang snaps, party snaps and throwdowns — to name a few. They're basically baby firecrackers without the fuse.
Without getting too deep in the nitty-gritty details, here's what's in the typical bang snap:
- Silver fulminate: This highly reactive substance is the primary explosive in snaps. There's only a small amount in each little packet, so the most intense reaction you'll get is a sharp, satisfying POP!
- Buffer: Snaps also contain coarse sand or gravel to reduce the shock wave, which makes them safe for use with young kids. Even if activated in the hands, the risk of injury is minimal.
- Potassium chlorate: Some fireworks manufacturers add potassium chlorate to the mix to make their snaps even more reactive to pressure.
All these ingredients are wrapped in a ball or tube-shaped piece of cigarette or tissue paper. Kids can activate them by throwing them on the ground or stepping on them. They'll get some nice bangs that are quiet enough for their little ears, and then they'll be coming back for more.
For really little ones, party poppers are an even safer choice. By pulling the attached string, kids unleash streams of confetti from these little bottle-shaped canisters. They're perfect for kids who are totally new to the joy of fireworks or who need a less firey form of fun.
Whether they're drawing their names in light or pretending to be Harry Potter characters, kids love swirling these glittery magic wands through the air.
Sparklers come in all sorts of colors and sizes, so the choices are endless. They can be made from either metal wire or paper. The paper versions, also known as morning glories, are generally safer for kids than metal sparklers because they don't heat up as much.
You'll want to light your kid's sparkler with a long butane or propane lighter, which you can usually find for cheap at your local grocery store. When it's time to light up, make sure your kiddo is holding the sparkler away from them and others and by the handle so they can keep their hands safe.
Once you've lit their sparkler, you can let them light others' sparklers with their own — with your supervision, of course! Just make sure they take it slow and light one sparkler at a time to stay safe.
Let your elementary schoolers live out their ninja fantasies with smoke fireworks. These fireworks don't explode when lit — instead, they create a colorful smoke screen perfect for sneaking up on your target.
From epic neon smoke bombs to spooky white clouds, these ground fireworks provide endless fun for kids ages 7 and up. Just light it up and let it smoke — your little ninjas will know what to do from there.
Moving on to Middle School
Kids grow up so fast! Once they reach the tweenage years, kids can handle greater responsibility and bigger booms than they could when they were five.
That said, it's still a smart idea for adults to light any fireworks for late elementary and middle schoolers. As always, follow package directions and keep a safe distance from your fireworks. Check out our Fireworks Safety FAQ for more tips!
Also known as gerbs, cone fountains are low-key yet exciting ground fireworks that produce an enormous variety of effects. While they're mild in explosiveness, they're pretty to look at, making them a great choice for family fireworks displays.
Here's how they work. First, you set your fountains on the ground. Once you light them up, they shoot off a glittering shower of colorful sparks. The show lasts for about a minute on average and is pretty quiet compared to big fireworks.
If you've got tweens in your family who like loud, shiny things, add some fountains to the show at your next big block party. Make sure you and your kids suit up in safety goggles and gloves before setting up to show them you're serious.
Sometimes called jumping jacks or blooming flowers, ground spinners are exciting ways to bring the boom in small packages. They're low-key enough to be set off in your own backyard as long as your local government allows it, but they're cool enough to keep tweens entertained for just long enough to forget about TikTok.
Simply set the disk-shaped spinner on the ground, ignite it and watch it spin! Some spinners are designed to ignite in your hand, providing an even more exciting experience for kids.
Bring on the Teenage Years
Once your kid hits high school, they're ready to play with the big boys. By this point, you should be able to trust them to follow directions and keep themselves and others safe. Adult supervision is still important, but you can let your teen take the wheel now. Here are some of our suggestions for the best fireworks for teens.
CAUTION: Exposing your teen to firecrackers might get them hooked — in a good way!
Firecrackers are small explosive devices containing gunpowder, which is mostly potassium nitrate mixed with charcoal and a little bit of sulfur. When you light a firecracker, it explodes and emits a brilliant flash — or a series of flashes — and a loud, satisfying CRACK!
When you're setting off firecrackers with a teen, make sure you're in a wide open space with a hard, level surface. Keep a fire extinguisher or a hose on hand in case something accidentally ignites, and soak any duds with water before trying to handle them. Happy cracking!
Roman candles are classic fireworks. They create dazzling aerial shows by launching explosive stars into the sky one after another.
The larger the candle, the bigger the boom. Smaller Roman candles are great for teens because they let them experiment with fireworks without being overwhelmed.
Roman candles are off-limits in certain states, so make sure to check local legislation before letting your kid light up. And make sure your kid knows not to hold Roman candles when setting them off — they should always stabilize these fireworks on a hard, level surface before starting the show.
Shop Kid-Friendly Fireworks Online
At Red Apple Fireworks, we're devoted to providing the best fireworks for pyros of all ages. With more than 35 unique brands and hundreds of exciting choices, we've got booms for everyone in the family. Check out our online catalog or visit us in person to find your next favorite explosive.
Got questions? We've got answers. Contact our customer service team today!