I think the most overlooked aspect of parenting is teaching our kids about self defence and security. What they must do to avoid untoward incidents like kidnapping, accidents on the road and at home. I believe this has to be instilled in the kid’s mind for at least a few times before they get it.
About 2,100 children are reported missing each day, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
John Peek, of Deerfield Beach, is offering a free class on child-safety and abduction awareness next Saturday for parents and children in Broward and Palm Beach counties. Peek is the owner and head instructor of ATA Black Belt Academy, a Deerfield Beach Tae Kwondo studio.
Here are some of Peek’s top tips:
Saying NO: Peek says the way a child says it is key. A child should step back with their hands waving in the air and shout "no" in ways that call attention from others nearby.
Don’t touch me: Children need to be taught it is not appropriate for any stranger to touch them in the "bathing suit" areas of their body.
I don’t know you: It’s OK for kids to call attention to themselves whenever an unknown adult approaches them. Yelling "stranger danger" will let other adults in the area know something is wrong.
Home safety: Children need to know predators will sometimes pretend to be a friend of a parent or a person bringing news about a parent being injured or hospitalized, so strangers should never be allowed to enter a home. And they need to know it’s not safe to provide strangers any information over the phone.
Self defense: Peek will also give hands-on demonstrations that teach a child basic ways to break free from a stranger, including how to pull back on a person’s thumb, because that is the weakest part of the hand.
These are handy tips that are not only good for kids but adults as well. Once in a while, it’s good to remind ourselves and our kids about this.