While there may be a very slim chance that you and your kids would ever be part of a terrorist attack or disaster, the chance is still there and so we must prepare.
We don’t know when the next emergency will happen but we must do everything we can to ensure that we all get out of the situation safely.
If you have kids then you may have been putting this off through fear of scaring them but done correctly, this won’t be an issue and in this article we are going to be sharing some of the top tips for teaching kids what to do in an emergency.
One of the best starting points is by using what kids love the most, games, and this leads us to our first tip.
1. Play the “What If” Game
When I was growing up me and my brother used to play the “what if” game anywhere we went. We weren’t doing it back then for preparation, it was just a fun game we played in which we came up with different scenarios to see what the other would do.
Little did we know back then that some of those scenarios would actually happen in our future.
The idea of the “what if” game is to turn the conversation of emergencies into a game for your child and praise them for correct answers.
2. Safe People and Safe Places
They need to understand that not every stranger they come across is bad. If you have a house fire, they need to know firefighters are there to help them and not to harm them. They can be trusted.
They need to know such things as:
- Who they can trust such as police, firefighters, teachers, paramedics, etc.
- To trust their instincts
- To be aware of their surroundings
- Learning to be assertive
- Knowing that they should tell a trusted adult if they have been approached by a stranger.
Safe places could be banks, post offices, libraries, medical centres, shops, supermarkets and leisure centres. If your child can’t see a safer stranger outside they should look for a safer building to go into to ask for help from the people who work there. If possible they should give their name and a contact number for their parents.
3. Teach Them How to Use Emergency Phone Numbers
Calling emergency phone numbers such as 999 in the UK or 999 in the US is not as easy as it used to be, especially for children. They must however, understand that the number is not to be used unless it is a real emergency.
If you use a landline the process is pretty straightforward but if you use a smartphone there is a longer process involved to get to the keypad which they need to understand.
Most smartphones nowadays have emergency options so you will need to find out what they are for phone. If you have an iPhone then you would press the home button twice then press the button that has the E at the beginning.
4. Remain Alert
My kids are going to do what they see me doing. Your kids will do what they see you doing. As an example, if I go around stealing then my child will more than likely grow up to do the same thing. This is a rather extreme example but as a parent you need to be a good example, right?
If you constantly walk around with your head in your phone, what will your child see as normal behavior?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying not to u use your phone but if you ignore your surroundings then you could potentially walk straight into a dangerous situation. Pay attention to your surroundings and your kids will learn to do the same.
5. That’s Not Normal
With certain acts (not all), there are usually signs that if noticed, will alert people that something is about to happen. This also helps us to know when something isn’t quite right.
Your kids need to understand at least basic situational awareness. They need to understand how to spot when something is not right. This could be a person or even an unattended backpack.
6. Get Out, Hide Out, Take Out
You essentially have three outs with most scenarios, get out, hide out, and take out. Getting this right will be the deciding factor in if you survive or not.
Getting out means getting away from where the violence is occurring. If you can’t do that, you should hide out—and hiding under the desk isn’t hiding. You need to barricade yourself in somewhere by locking and blocking the door. The third option is to take the person out, and do everything you can to defend yourself. Far fetched? Read the news!
Want to share your own tips? Let us hear them in the comments section below.