Author: Shannon Miller Lifestyle
Mothers often think – Am I keeping my children safe?
There are lots of types of safety to consider in the modern world. It is not the same world that we grew up in.
The world is not something to fear, but taking a few precautions can help keep your children safe from danger and from predators.
Child Safety At or Near Water
As summer comes to a close, most people close their swimming pools. Regardless, any pool can be a danger to children at any time of the year. Do not allow your child to play around your pool or anyone else’s pool in the off season.
Child Safety Online
Your child probably has his or her own internet life, much like you do in the modern times. But children can not discern as well as adults what content they should he exposed to, or whether someone online is their friend or not.
Whenever possible, be around and aware of what your child is doing online. In the early years, your child should only have access to a few programs online, such as pbskids.org or abcmouse.com. If he or she accidentally clicks away from the original intended site, he or she should come to you for help right away.
If he is a little older, he may have a little more free reign to try some youth-oriented sites.
Remind your child to:
- Never click on pop ups
- Never visit an unknown site without permission
- Never giver personal information online, such as names, addresses, and schools.
If your child is old enough to be in chat rooms or have social media accounts, make sure that:
- They do not list anything as “public.” All posts should be “friends only.”
- They only friend people that they know as a real person in real life, or that you know as a real person. In other words, they should know their friends from school, not because they got a friend request from a friend of a friend.
- You are also listed as a friend and can see all posts and conversations posted with your child.
Cell ‘phone Safety for Children
Many of the same rules apply with a child’s cell ‘phone. When you deem it appropriate to give your child a ‘phone, also decide what the parameters will be. The National PTA actually suggests having an appropriate use contract with your child. If they break the contract, they forfeit the ‘phone for a given amount of time.
Some cell ‘phone considerations for your children may be:
- Who they can call or talk to on the ‘phone
- What times of day are appropriate to visit or text on the ‘phone
- Appropriate types of messages and images to be sent on the ‘phone.
As the parent, you have rights to check the ‘phone and the ‘phone bill. When you question who it is they are contacting, you should ask and expect a straight response.
Child Safety at School
Your child’s safety at school or on a school transportation system is your business, though you may not be able to be there every day to witness what is going on first hand. Get to know what your child is doing throughout his or her day. See the previous SML article on bullying for more information.
Your child’s safety is the most important part of her learning and development. The hippocampus, the site of the brain that allows new information to enter, is also the center that tells the child if she is safe. If she does not feel safe, she will not learn. No one wants the helpless feeling that their child may not be safe. Stay in touch with your child to be assured that her day is a safe one.