>> Jan 31, 2012
There are certain things that children need to know as soon as possible. Providing children with the basic survival skills of life is an extremely important part of being a parent. Whilst this will not absolve you from the responsibility of properly supervising your children, it will enable you to relax slightly more without worrying all of the time. A very young child will potentially run into the road if you let it, so the goal has to be to create boundaries and rules in the child’s mind, even if they do not understand the consequences. Just as you would be sure to keep your family safe with a home security system, it is essential to prepare your children for life properly. This article will consider some of the things that parents need to teach their children so that they are better prepared to cope in inevitable real life situations.
- Children need to know their full name, address and a contact telephone number. If children ever get lost then you need to be able to locate them easily. You would not put a tag on a child, so necessarily your child needs to be able to inform anyone who finds them of where they live and of who they are. It is also sensible to write this information on the inside of their school bags and other possessions so that adults can identify them if they are lost.
- When in a busy shopping centre it is sometimes possible to lose sight of your child. Whilst this should be avoided at all costs, it does occasionally happen. Your child needs to understand that they should stay where they are until you find them and that they should not leave a shop without you under any circumstances.
- Explain the boundaries of human contact. Children are completely innocent and do not understand what is appropriate touching and what is not. This applies to both your child touching others and your child being touched. Explaining that children should always tell you if they have been touched by an adult will enable you to help them determine the boundaries and alert you if anything is amiss.
- Teach children the meaning of alarms. A fire alarm can be a very intimidating noise if it is unknown. Explaining what the noise is and how to act when they hear it is a very important stage of development and could potentially save their life.
- Children should know never to go anywhere without their parent or guardian. It is important to explain the dangers of children leaving with strangers or even with familiar but unexpected people. This is particularly important when it comes to the collection of children from school or activities.
- Tell your children that they must never open the front door unless you are with them. Opening the door to strangers can be as dangerous as leaving with a stranger so it is important to always monitor their behaviour.
- Explain to children that they are able to say no to adults if they ask them to do things which make them uncomfortable. They need to know that they do not have to do everything that an adult says and should not allow unwanted contact or to be taken away from the sight of other people.
- Most importantly, children need to know that there are no secrets between parents and children. They should know that they should tell you everything, even if someone else tells them that they shouldn’t. It is also important to explain the difference between surprises and secrets so that they can appreciate that some things are ok and some are not.