Medical &Health

Stranger Danger: How to teach children safety rules for unknown, unsafe people

Child safety means an area concerned with minimizing children’s vulnerability to hazards and diminishing their risk of getting harmed. Children are generally vulnerable to accidents, sexual abuse, and other dangerous issues. As a kid can hardly save itself, the parents and caregivers should be careful about its safety. So, it is important to teach young children about the dangers that can happen to them from strangers. Let them understand that a person they do not know can be dangerous even if they are female or look ‘nice’. This article is about stranger danger so continue reading to teach children stranger safety rules.

10 ways to teach children about personal safety from Strangers

It is really important to teach kids specific lessons and language about personal safety so that they can deal with potentially unsafe situations. Children don’t know about safety, they don’t know where they are vulnerable. As a parent or guardian, it is your responsibility to save your children from any danger and so make sure you teach your children personal safety. Here go some effective ways to make your kids smart while interacting with strangers and unsafe people.

Define strangers

Let your kids define the safer and more dangerous stranger. Generally, a safer stranger will be wearing a uniform like Police Officers, Police Community Support Officers, traffic wardens, check-out assistants, and others. Tell them that they can easily recognize them because of their uniforms. Besides, tell them about safer buildings. They could be banks, post offices, libraries, medical centers, shops, supermarkets, leisure centers, and others.

Explain to your kids to take help from a safer stranger in case they fall in any danger or they can go to the safer building and talk with the people there. If you want to make your kids aware of strangers, let them recognize the phrase safer strangers, safer buildings as part of their growing understanding of stranger awareness.

Stay close

To prevent your children from getting lost, make sure you talk with them about the possibility and what to do if the situation does arise. Tell them to stay close to you in shops and to hold onto your hand or the trolley.

You can use reins or wristbands on young children in busy places. Don’t leave children individually in play areas. Besides, teach them to remember their parents or guardians' names, addresses, and telephone numbers so that they can use them in the case of getting lost.

When alone at home

It is one of the serious issues. Most of the time, it happens that children need to stay home alone, especially in the case of working parents. Tell them not to open the door when anybody knocks.

First, check and then open if they know the person standing at the door. If unsure, they, of course, call the parents. Moreover, they shouldn’t also answer the phone if they don’t know the person. If they need to receive the call, they just listen but do not answer or give any information about their situation.

Start young

Teaching Stranger Danger is a crucial part of a child’s development. It is as important as learning to look both ways when crossing the street. Don’t be late. Teach them about strangers as soon as they begin school. Let them know strangers can offer candy or something attractive to lure children away. Tell them not to take gifts from people you do not know.

Screaming

Teach your children to scream out things if they guess any danger to alarm others. They can say:

- Who are you? Help!

- Leave me alone! I don’t know you!

- Where are my mom and dad? Help!

Tell them that if a stranger tries to take them – they need to scream and make a scene.

Be specific

Make sure you are specific in the case of informing your kids about stranger danger. Tell them about some of the uncomfortable things unsafe people may do. For example, they may pay a lot of attention to kids and try to give them presents.

Secondly, they may be rude to kids when kids ask them to stop. Moreover, unsafe people may use inappropriate words to comment on how kids look. Most importantly, they may ask a child for directions or to help them look for something.

Role-play

Let child knows it’s OK to say no to people. It doesn’t matter whether the person is known or unknown to your children. First, explain to them what they do in situations that involve strangers. Then, you can act out and role-play the situations that involve people your child may know, too. Moreover, what children should do if an unfamiliar neighbor invites them for a snack. They also need to know what to do if a relative keeps asking their child for “hugs and kisses”?

Teaching about body

Tell children that no one is allowed to touch their bodies in a way that makes them uncomfortable. Do not let them stay alone before a stranger or the person you think is not good at all doesn’t matter whether he is your family member or a stranger. Of course, you attend with your child if he has to have physical exams with a doctor.

About scary situations

Teach them some steps to use if an uncomfortable situation happens. The probable steps are as follows:

Step 1: Loudly say, “NO!” (Ask kids to use their inside voice when they can feel unnatural. They need to do so to make the parents aware of their danger.)

Step 2: Run away. (Kids may not allow running from adults, especially in busy areas. )

Step 3: Find a trusted adult. (If your child is lost, they should look for a mom who has kids with her.)

Talk about online stranger safety

Personal safety extends to your child’s digital life also. It can be started at a very early age. Make sure to teach kids what’s appropriate and inappropriate online. Create boundaries where necessary. Besides, you also need to learn about how to protect your child against online predators. Awareness and consciousness of parents, as well as caregivers, are required to teach children how to stay safe from stranger dangers.

Source: United News of Bangladesh