There is no better summer activity than taking the kids out to enjoy the great outdoors and one of the best places for children to enjoy their summer is on the playground.
Before taking the kids to the park to play on the playground, make sure to go over a few basic safety rules:
The first thing the kids should understand is never to talk to someone they do not know. It may seem like this is obvious but young children are naturally trusting and if someone that is friendly comes up to them, odds are they will not assume they are dangerous. So, make sure the kids understand that absolutely anyone that walks up to them could be a “bad guy” and that the kids should come straight back to their parent if they are ever approached.
Another thing parents should mention is playground etiquette. The kids need to understand that they have to share the playground with a lot of other children. Talk to them about waiting their turn, not being allowed to push or shove and to be friendly with the other kids around them. Make sure they also understand that if another child pushes them, they should come to their parent rather than pushing back.
The last thing to talk to the kids about with safety is staying where their parents can see them. If a parent has more than one child or if the playground is crowded that day, it can sometimes be hard to keep track of the kids the entire time. So, it is best that the kids also understand that they should not go anywhere that they cannot see Mommy or Daddy.
What a child wears at the playground can also create a safer environment. Obviously summer is hot, so shorts and t-shirts are usually the best choice. Try and steer clear of dresses or skirts, as those can often get caught and be a risk for injury. It is also best that kids wear closed-toe shoes. If they do wear sandals, make sure they secure in the back. Another must-have is a hook-and-loop toddler belt that will keep pants or shorts secure during active play.
Kids are always going to get hurt every now and then, so it is best to be prepared for when it happens. Make sure to pack a first-aid kit with extra band-aids in a bag or purse when going to the park. Also, bring some wet wipes to use if a cut needs cleaned or if a child gets too dirty. Since it is summer, parents should also be prepared with a lot of water. Make sure the kids are stopping to get a drink often in order to guard against getting overheated. Other items to bring include, sunscreen, extra clothes, hats to block the sun and bug spray.
Kids love outdoor play and they love going to the park. It is important that they have that in their lives, but also that they know how to play while also staying safe.