Young children are dependent upon us for just about everything. They are with us all of the time, and we take care of every little detail. This attention to their needs keeps them safe. What if something happened? What would they do if they got separated from us? A preschool child can begin to learn a few basic emergency tips that could keep them safe in an unexpected situation.
Mommy and Daddy’s Names
My daughter learned my name when she was two or three. In her case, it was pretty easy. I worked at a day care, she attended the day care, and she heard the other kids using my name. If you don’t happen to work in a day care, you should make the effort to teach your child your name. It took a little longer before my daughter learned Daddy’s name. You don’t want your child getting lost, and when someone tries to assist your child, the only thing they know is that her parents names are “Mommy” and “Daddy.”
Your child will probably come across this in preschool or on television, but if you live in an area that has 911 access, they need to know about 911. They also need to know how to use the telephone to call 911. If you’re ever in the house alone with your child, and something happens to you, they need to be able to call 911 to get help. Stress to your child that it probably will never happen, but if Mommy or Daddy is lying on the floor and you can’t wake them up, he will have to call 911. While you’re at it, remind him that he should never call 911 unless it’s an emergency and there isn’t an adult that can call.
Who to Get Help From if They Get Lost
Preschool children need to know who to turn to if they get lost. They are capable of knowing that not all people are nice people (they probably already know this from meeting some not-so-nice people on the playground) and that they should talk to someone trustworthy if they get lost. They should learn to find a store worker, someone in uniform, or a “mom type” if they get lost and need to find you. They should also be taught to never get in the car with a stranger, no matter what. Make sure that they know that if they get lost, they shouldn’t wander off, because you will be looking for them.
You Don’t Have to Scare Them
Even though topics like getting lost or seeing Mommy and Daddy get hurt can be scary topics, you don’t have to scare your child. Preschool children already know that sometimes people get hurt. They probably have skinned their knee or fallen down several times already. Your preschooler has probably already lost you at least once, even if you both were in the house and they didn’t know that you were in the kitchen. When you have these conversations with your child, you can stress that these sorts of situations will probably never happen, but they need to be prepared just in case.