Help Your Kids Stay Safe This Halloween
Halloween is one of the best nights of the year for a lot of kids. Between dressing up, trick-or-treating, and often staying up past bedtime, there’s so much fun to be had. But before your kids head out with their costumes and pillowcases, make sure they get a refresher on staying safe. Here are some important points to cover so everyone can focus on safely enjoying Halloween:
Since so much of trick-or-treating involves walking close to the street or crossing it, make sure your kids know how to do so safely. This means always looking both ways before crossing the street, using crosswalks and sidewalks, and watching for cars backing out of driveways. Encourage younger trick-or-treaters to hold hands with you, their chaperones, or their friends when doing so!
Important phone numbers
If you will not be chaperoning your littles ones yourself, it’s important they know how to reach you on the phone. It may be becoming an old-fashioned habit, but it can be a good idea to have them memorize your number so they’re not dependent on it being saved on a phone. If that proves too challenging, try writing it down for them inside their costume, or on paper inside their candy carrier.
Make sure kids know their home address by heart before they trick-or-treat. It’s easy to get turned around in the dark, and even being able to identify their street sign can go a long way in helping them get their bearings. If they do get lost, knowing their home address will make it much easier for a kind neighbor to help them find their way home.
Safety in numbers
Trick-or-treating is much safer as a group activity (and often more fun). Kids should either trick-or-treat with other kids (if they’re older), or with an adult. Make sure your kids know to always stay with their group, and to never wander off, even for a moment. This is also a great opportunity to implement a buddy system!
Establish a trick-or-treating route
Kids can get surprisingly far from home when they’re racing from house to house with the sole goal of getting as much candy as possible. Give them geographical limits if they’re going out without an adult. Show them a map or walk around your neighborhood together. If they know to stay within, for example, a 4-block radius, and have familiarized themselves with the area, they’re much less likely to get lost or to stray too far from home.
Halloween is a great opportunity to review stranger danger with your kids. Make sure they know not to go inside strangers’ homes or accept rides from strangers. It’s also a good idea to remind them to only eat candy if it’s in its original wrapper (this means no homemade sweets or treats from strangers), and to only trick-or-treat at well-lit homes.
Did we miss any useful safety tips? How does your family prepare for safe Halloween fun? Let us know, and have a safe and happy Halloween!