Very often we see posts about lost kids, wailing around, unable to tell their whereabouts. Lucky are those who reach to the safe hands and people genuinely put efforts to find out their guardians and hand them over safely but many unfortunate ones end up in misery, get trapped in trafficking etc. Such frightful posts always leave me thinking about those kids and parents and whether they would ever meet again or were destined to be parted forever.
So, it’s important for the parents to ensure that our children are capable enough to share the required information if by any chance, they are lost. This process of teaching your kids what information they need to know in case of emergency should start at the age of around 3 years. They won’t be able to feed it in their minds immediately but with regular practice and repetition, they can be prepared for any such eventuality.
Here is the list:
• Their names and Parents names:
Teach your children, their own names along with both mother and father’s full name. In case anyone of you get lost, they should be able to tell people who they are.
Children should know their full address including which city you live in and the landmarks too if any.
• Phone number:
Children should memorize at least one parent’s mobile number. Prefer the parent who stays in a proper network coverage area and most likely to be able to answer to the calls.
• Allergy Information:
Teach your kids about the allergies they have, if any. Also, tell them if anyone else in the family is also allergic to something. This could help in case of any accidents where you are not in a state to talk and kids can furnish such lifesaving information.
• Illness and Medication:
If you or your child has any illness or any medical condition for which you take medication or you are allergic to certain medicines, tell your children about it. Always carry a medical alert card in your wallet. In case you take inhaler for asthma, make sure your kid knows where to find it. This could save your life. While teaching about medicines to kids, we need to make sure to teach them about the ill effects of taking medicines without doctor’s prescription and advice so that they never eat them accidentally during play.
• Police, Ambulance, Doctor, Fire brigade numbers:
Explain to your children what 1-0-0 is and how and when they should call. Since most of us don’t use landline telephones, we need to teach them how to dial 1-0-0 on your phone even when it is locked. Also teach them about ambulance, fire brigade and your family doctor’s number so that they can act appropriately when required.
How to teach:
Role play is the best way to teach anything to kids. Enact in front of them to show how to dial and what to talk on phone. Dial 1-0-0, put your phone on speaker mode and let them listen to what the operators will say. This will make the process less complicated for them. Tell them that the person on the line will ask for personal information like their name, address and the problem occurred and it OK to share the information with a stranger in such situations only.
Children should also need to know where they should go and what they should do in case of fire. Teach them the “do’s and dont’s” of the same. Also practice your family evacuation plan.
Children also need to know where they should take cover in case of natural disaster like earthquakes. Teach them to go in an open area away from the walls and doors and use stairs instead of lifts.
Another way of teaching them is just have a question and answer session during a play date. With practice and regular learning they will memorize the details soon. Remember, they are much smarter than we actually think them to be.
If you have any further inputs, feel free to add. Stay safe and smart.
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