Car and Traffic Safety for Kids

Raphael Locsin

November 4, 2010
Car and Traffic Safety for Kids

One of the most important roles parents have is teaching their children how to safely interact around traffic – whether they are walking to school, a passenger in a friend’s car or riding their bike around the block. After all, the best defense that parents can give them against an accident is preventative knowledge. Fortunately, it’s never too early to start talking about safety. However, some techniques work better than others when it comes to imparting safety tips that are easily remembered. For instance, handing a child a list of rules to follow around cars isn’t as effective as showing them by example.

Fun games and activities are two of the best ways to start teaching kids about traffic safety. Coloring sheets, activity books, short quizzes and role playing different scenarios are all great options. In fact, kids can start learning about traffic signs before they even enter school. For example, it’s easy to turn a simple walk around the block into an activity hunt that also serves as a learning experience. Look for specific types of signs, colors or even shapes. The key is to make the learning experience fun and interesting for their age group, and knowing when to stop so they don’t become overloaded with information. Many of the traffic safety games are fun to play as a group, as well, which is beneficial if they will be walking or riding to school with other children.

Traffic Safety

Walking to and from school is a common activity for many children, and as such, it also presents one of the highest risks in terms of safety. It is important to ensure that kids understand why they shouldn’t play around cars, walk close to a busy street or travel against traffic. One method of teaching children to stay safe around traffic is to spend time walking with them while explaining the potential dangers. They can learn a lot just by watching an adult observing basic safety around cars. Another great way to keep kids safe is to make sure they walk in a group. However, it’s important for children to understand why they should always make decisions for themselves, because they can never count on other kids being aware of all of the traffic dangers.

Bike Safety

Learning how to ride a bike is a very exciting experience because it not only opens up the door to more independence, but it’s also a great way for kids to have fun while staying in shape. Before allowing a child to get on their bike, it’s important to teach them how to safely ride alongside traffic, the different hand signals for turning, and why it’s imperative to always wear a helmet – regardless of how close their destination is. One of the most frequent mistakes that people make when it comes to bike safety is purchasing an incorrectly fitting the helmet. Children should be aware of how the helmet should sit on their head, as well as how they are supposed to adjust it if it doesn’t. Creating a checklist that children can use before getting on their bike is a great start to learning bike safety. It should include basic safety equipment, safe bike routes and the correct way to ride around traffic. After all, they won’t always have an adult to count on when they have a question about their bike or equipment.

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