The 10 Spot: Back-To-School Safety Tips
1) Don’t put your child's name on clothing, backpacks, lunch boxes, etc. where it's easily visible to others. Instead, put their name on the inside, so the article can be identified but a stranger can’t approach your child and use their name as a way to create familiarity.
2) Have a password between you and your child that no one knows. In the event someone other than yourself needs to pick them up, the person must say that password; otherwise, your child should not go.
3) If your child walks home and has a cell phone, advise them to keep their head up and phone down. They should be paying attention to their surroundings and cars approaching them.
4) Whether your kiddo walks to school or plays at a playground, predators often attempt to lure their prey. Make sure your child knows they shouldn’t talk with, or even help, a stranger. If someone they don’t know asks for help, teach them not to approach and instead get an adult to help them.
5) Teach your kids the difference between a secret and a surprise. Make sure they know to tell you if someone tells them a secret.
6) Encourage your child to communicate with you regularly, so in the event of an incident involving something like a stranger approaching them, they know to tell you.
7) Confirm your child knows a parent's cell phone number (including area code) and full name.
8) Predators typically prefer their prey to be compliant, so teach your child to kick, punch, and scream in the event they’re grabbed.
9) If your child rides their bike to school, teach them to latch onto it if someone attempts to abduct them; it’ll make it that much harder for the offender to take them.
10) If your child is approached by a car while they’re walking, teach them to walk away from the car (in the opposite direction the car is traveling).
By AMITIS POURARIAN
Amitis Pourarian is a seventh-degree black belt and owner of THE STUDIO Martial Arts and Fitness in Roseville. For more child safety tips and to sign up for a workshop or self-defense class, visit trainatthestudio.com.