As December is here, so too comes the big countdown to Christmas and the summer school holidays. Children are abuzz with excitement of what is to come as parents and carers busily juggle the festive demands of the holiday season. Whilst it is the season to be jolly, it can also be a chaos-filled time.
With more people on the road, holiday crowds to contend with and parents and carers managing work commitments, it’s a good idea to ensure children are aware of some basic safety tips.
It’s important not to underestimate the value of teaching children about simple safety rules to help keep themselves, siblings and friends safe this holiday season. With a few enlightening conversations, you can help your kids avoid potentially dangerous situations and reduce the worry so you can enjoy a stress-free holiday too.
Here are some helpful ways to educate your kids without overwhelming them.
Helping Tweens and Teens Safely Exercise Independence
For older children and young teens ready for a little more independence, venturing out own their own to nearby places may feature heavily in their school holiday plans. Ensuring they are aware of a few basic safety rules and ensuring clear processes are in place can help take the worry away for parents and carers.
- Communication and consent are key. Remind your kids to always talk to you before leaving the house. It’s important that they know not to go anywhere until they have your consent and that they are to remain at the agreed location. If they want to go elsewhere, they are to speak with you first. Setting a clear curfew is also helpful.
- Be cautious of unfamiliar people. Make it very clear they must stick with a buddy or two and it they feel uncomfortable by someone’s presence, heading to a safe place (such as their home) or to a busier public area (i.e., shopping centre) is a good idea. Emphasize they should stay to public paths where they are more visible and not to take hidden shortcuts.
- Take a mobile. If your child has a phone, ensure it is fully charged and has available credit so they can call you in an emergency. Activating a GPS tracker is also another handy parental tool.