parent and teach safe kids

Your parents let you out, let your children out!

What was your favorite activity outside of your parents eyesight?
Playing at a park, bike riding, building forts, tree climbing?
Mine was Cardboard Sliding!
In Marin County in the Summer, there were hills covered in golden dry grasses.
Armed with opened, cardboard boxes, my troop of friends and I slid down the hills, re climbed, and slid again for hours, I didn’t have an ounce of fat on me, I was happy, I was safe, and I was learning a lot about friendship an self reliance.
There are not more dangers today, as many parents believe, but there are a lot more children left without the empowerment, and awareness skills needed to engage as a healthy, strong member of society.
Somehow parents have begun over the last twenty years to cocoon
their children, instead of teaching basic safety so that children can think for themselves.
I wrote a book for parents and teachers, about children protecting themselves, using a basic safety plan, covering themselves like inner armor,
with the knowledge of how to handle situations that any person will run into.
Lenore Skenazy, in her book, blog and television show emphasizes
That as known as her favorite nickname, “World’s Worst Mom,”
Teaches parents that helicopter parenting cripples our children.

Follow me at , TeachSafety, on Twitter, Follow Lenore, at
Worlds Worst Mom.
Go to Amazon and order your copy of What Should You Do?
Helping Children Protect Themselves in the Twenty-First Century,
Tate Publishing
By Melinda Reynolds Tripp


Raise a safe child, The Video.


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Okay, that new bike is great, and shiny and fun……
But don’t forget about safety.
How to ride it safely, where to ride and with whom…….riding with a partner is always a good idea!
Watch for cars, pedestrians, download rules of the road for bikes and discuss.

You cannot take a child, attached gumby- style, to a bike and screaming for all they are worth, put them in a car….there is a story in my book about this also..
see lovely illustration from my book, above.

In my book page 81, I tell the story of The girl who was too much trouble!
It is Mickenzie’s Story,
She and her brother were coming home from piano lessons, riding their bikes down a dirt road.
They stopped to look at the grazing horses. They moved their bikes over for the oncoming truck, but it pulled over and stopped. The man chatted with the kids and talked about the horses. Soon he asked for their help, looking for his dog, told the kids he knew their parents and was sure it would be ok with them…if he could just put their bikes in his truck…….maybe he had a picture of the dog in his truck he said as he began opening the doors…..
Mickenzie’s had heard about tricks, at home and at a school assembly, watching, listening, and this felt bad,
( in my book I get children to tune into their natural intuition when it comes to behavior, if it feels bad, it is bad, get away)
Mickenzie’s knew there were people at the end of the lane and instructed her brother, loudly, to ride, go to them, get help, ….as the man abruptly picked her up, and tried to force her into his truck. With her foot she slammed the first door shut….he successfully pushed her through another door, started the truck, and attempted to drive. Mickenzie’s was having none of this, hitting/kicking at him she told him in no uncertain terms he was NOT taking her anywhere. Unable to drive, the man stopped the truck,
Told her to get out she would have to climb over him……(ugh!) she does this, jumps down and runs in the same direction her brother had gone, and sees him returning with the friends down the lane.
Victory. The man in this attempted abduction, was caught less than 24 hrs later, identified, and this brave girl, later the following month, sat on the witness stand, told her story, and put him behind bars.
She’s a wonderful young woman, a college student now……her parents wrote one of the forewords for my book…..she even takes time for Internet scrabble with me just to stay in touch😊

I use this story to talk about riding in pairs, about how you can use a bike to get away, about
And how to use the plan ( outlined in the book) to say no to any bad behavior, and to go, and tell their safe adults. That they have the power to save themselves if they ever need it.
It is a simple, easy to use plan that covers many situational safety problems as children grow.
Every child will run into their own problems..but they should each have a similar plan,
No, Go and Tell.

Read more about it in What Should You Do? For parents and teachers of children ages 5-13




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National Walk to School Day is Coming

Organize neighborhood walking pairs and groups.
Pay Attention to the behaviors around you.
Never have both earbuds in while walking.
Use the Safe and Sound Strategy!
If you walk home, to stay home on your own,
never show your key in your hand until you use it to enter your home.
Always check to make sure the home is secure before entering.
If you are not sure, seek a safe neighbor for help.
A parent can help manage the safety of their child by teaching safe
practices, pointing out the correct and designated route,
and telling children areas or homes to avoid.

brought to you by
BY Author Melinda Reynolds Tripp
What Should You Do? Helping Children Protect Themselves in the Twenty-First Century
Tate Publishing 2010

Safe Kids Worldwide is promoting safety for walkers with the following basic strategies-

Look left, then right, then left again when you cross the street.
Cross the street at the corner or at a crosswalk and obey all traffic signals.
Cross the street with an adult until you are at least 10 years old.
Walk on sidewalks or paths, not in the street.
Play in safe areas, away from streets, driveways and parking lots.
© 2013 Safe Kids Worldwide


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Where is Isabel?

Where is Little Isabel?
While we wait to hear, take a few minutes to begin teaching safety to your children, grandchildren and students. It is something you can do now, and someday might allow them to save thier lives.

Teach Them the Drill
EMERGENCY! Teach your family the drill!
Won’t it just scare them……?
Not if you do a good job. That goes for teaching any safety lesson. Think empowerment!
Remember, not knowing what to do is really scary!
Pick yourself a safety emergency word, make one up or do what I did, use a foreign word for danger that couldn’t be accidentally used.
Here are a few scenarios……they may never be applicable, you pick what you need.
1) Tornado coming-
A trusted family member yells warning- no lost time- family goes directly into their drill. Practice makes perfect. Take turns scattering family members around home area, trusted adult yells emergency word, family responds…..make it a game, discuss any problems. Children are great at contributing their ideas. ( I had a certain blogging Mom in mind here!)
2) Home Invasion-
(About a mile from our home, two men were shot during a home invasion last week. It has been years since we had this kind of activity in our town. ) Growing up my daughters had their drill, if they heard our emergency word in the house, there has been a home invasion, get out your window, over the fence, and to the neighbors. That was our drill, you will make your own. You will have no time, they need to trust, and act. Naturally, if you can get your children out of the house, you can then focus on saving yourself, your spouse, etc. Like all of my safety lessons I remind people that the people with the bad behavior, the bad guys, have no idea you are yelling to save your kids. They have no idea your children are busy saving themselves. We used a Japenese word at home. I don’t know why, but I picked Japenese…..I wouldn’t have used a Spanish word, most Californians can speak some Spanish.
3) Car-jacking-
This happens! If a car hits you from behind, check, this could be a carjacking. If you think it’s a carjacking I’m counting on your observation skills and intuition (say you see “kids”getting out of their car)….. You can start by, not stopping, call 911. Personally, I would drive to a safe place. Remember your cars usually have an alarm, use it!
That being said, here’s where I would have made the wrong decision.
This happened a block from my daughter’s home just a few weeks ago. I probably would have gotten out, it was a car full of young girls, a block from the university. Wrong, it was a car jacking, go figure! We are all still learning!
If you are parked, getting gas, perhaps,
A) No kids, hit alarm button then throw those keys, yelling,” take it!” Grab what you can, me, I’ve got my wallet, and yelling, run to a safe place with safe people and call for help.
B) Got Kids? Hit the alarm button, Then you may have to use your emergency word. Yell your word. Older kids able to get out of seatbelts, do, and if possible, unbuckle siblings. Then get out and run to a safe place. Your job, keep the attention of the assailant! Then throw the keys as far away from the car as you can, yelling, “take my car! Not my kids!” this is a huge heads up to the good people, who are everywhere! You always want to get attention. The bad guys really hate alot of attention! Open the doors, evacuate the kids, run……
A little aside, don’t carry lots of cash, or credit cards, be sensible. The ones you do carry keep a copy of both sides of those cards at home so you can call them in if stolen.
Okay, so now you know what’s been happening in my little university town……..usually it is all good , but the gangs in CA really do have us more aware of our surroundings, watching out more for ourselves, our families and our neighbors.
Think safety……Just keep an eye on what your family needs. Keep on top of current events in your town, or area. Like all of safety education, having a plan is less scary than not having one.
My children never had to hear our emergency word. But they did know how to save themselves, and are now smart, secure and aware parents.


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