Teaching children about road safety early is important. This may prevent accidents later in life. Of course, no matter how careful we are or how much we prepare our children, sometimes accidents happen. If you or your child has been in an accident on the road then you should contact an ‘accident lawyer near me’.
Road safety is one of the most important lessons you will teach your child and will prepare them for independence playing outside and walking to school. Road safety is not something you teach in a day, it involves lots of skills that are developed and built upon over time.
How to teach your kids about road safety
Younger children are full of energy and are eager to run around and may not be aware of things around them. It is important to drill into them early on the importance of being safe around roads.
Younger children should hold an adult’s hand whenever they cross a road. Tell them the importance of waiting by a road until an adult is with them. If you can always get younger children to walk away from the curb so you are nearest to the road and try and prevent them from running away.
You can reinforce the need to hold hands through a ‘hands in hands’ activity whereby you draw around your hand and your child’s hand. You can then cut them out and decorate them and place them together on the fridge or a wall.
Elementary school children
With young children, it is good to have clear steps in place when crossing a road that they can remember. Set a good example, children will copy your behavior. You should only cross when there is plenty of room with your children. Studies show that children are more likely to misjudge how far away a car is. Therefore, teach them to leave plenty of space.
- Find a safe place to cross. If a crossing is nearby then walk to it.
- Stop before the road.
- Look left.
- Look right.
- If the road is clear, then walk across the road and continue to look and listen out for cars.
A good thing to repeat to children is the phrase, ‘stop, look and listen’. You should also involve your child in the decision-making process. Ask them if they think it is ok to cross. To get in plenty of practice be sure to walk with your children often, opt to walk to school rather than drive if you can.
You can also practice games and activities with your children. When playing games with their dolls or teddies, go through the steps when they cross the road. There are also tools on YouTube which you can show them. Such as this road safety video.
You should teach your children about road safety from an early age. Teach them important lessons over time and slowly build up their independence. Remember, children can’t always make clear judgments in the same way that adults can. Make sure you are happy with their decision making around roads and their understanding of the dangers before they can cross the road on their own.