We all make daily decisions that affect our health, safety and well-being. You can help develop your child’s decision-making and problem-solving skills by talking about real-life situations that impact health and safety.
Step 1: Sit together in a comfortable spot -- away from distractions, if possible.
Step 2: Read or describe situations to your child, like those that are brought up in the book, Staying Healthy. One such situation has to do with being careful outdoors:
You are walking in the park near a tree.
You see a nest with a lot of insects flying around it.
Should you take a closer look or stay away?
Step 3: Ask your child what he thinks he should do. He may answer that he’d like to take a closer look at the nest. Praise his curiosity, but explain that it could be dangerous to examine a nest like that because it might be full of insects that sting, like bees and wasps. He could get very hurt by going to see a nest like that up close! Tell him that he should tell a trusted adult about that nest, so that nobody gets hurt.
Step 4: Share what you would do in situations like these and model the use of words that may not be familiar to your child. Give him opportunities to practice using new words.
Talk about only situations that are immediately familiar to your child. For example, talk about what to do when crossing a street.
Ask your child to draw a picture showing how he could stay safe in a given situation. You might also ask him to dictate a sentence or two about the picture that you can write down for him.