Home security should be important to every member of the family. Everyone needs to be involved and play a role in keeping the home safe and sound. While insurance companies offer discounts to homeowners who have a security system, the protection actually comes from the family members who are responsible for taking the necessary precautions.
Children can be extremely helpful when it comes to keeping the home safe and fully protected. Teach them early and home security and safety will be second nature. It is important to provide them with the tools and knowledge they need to approach each situation safely and confidently.
Let Your Child Guide You
When teaching your children the elements of home security, it’s important to let them guide you. You should consider your child’s age, their understanding of the steps involved, and their judgment concerning safety. Placing too much responsibility on your kids at an early age can be frightening. Even older children may get overwhelmed if you try to teach too much too soon.
It’s important to start teaching children about home security as soon as a new system is installed. Show them how things work and where the control panel is located. Teach them simple things they can do to help, such as call 9-1-1 on the telephone or hit the emergency button on the control panel. By starting them at a young age, you’ll be able to tell when they are ready to handle certain tasks on their own.
Knowing Your Security System
Learn as much as you can about your security system when it’s installed. Talk to the technicians as the unit is installed to get a good idea of how it works. You may even have your child watch this whole process. Once your system has been installed and is fully operational, start to include your children when you enable or disable the alarm or other functions.
Establish a routine for when you leave your home, go to bed at night, wake up in the morning, or return from an outing. After the child has a firm grasp of what needs to be done, allow them to perform a few of the tasks on their own. Hands-on learning is an ideal way to teach them how to operate any type of electronic or mechanical device.
Walk Through Different Scenarios With Your Children
Most parents have an evacuation route planned in case of a fire. They also practice what to do in case of threatening weather. The same should be true when it comes to home security. Talking through security scenarios will allow your child to see first hand what should be done in specific situations. Having a child actually perform a task will help them to remember each step.
Writing down specific instructions that they can look back on will also help. You can also create a binder where the instructions for each scenario can be kept. That way you can practice them on a regular basis. You can also place your instructions for the fire drills and severe weather precautions in the binder as well.
Create A Security Check List for Your Child
When leaving your child at home alone, you should make sure they understand the safety rules. They include:
- Have a firm grasp on how to work all of the locks in the home, including the doors, windows and garage doors.
- No visitors whatsoever.
- The stove, oven, and gas grill are off limits.
- Remain in constant communication at all times, via text or phone.
- In case of an emergency, dial 9-1-1 and go to a pre-determined place of safety.
- Memorize all personal information, as well as how to reach a parent in case of an emergency.
Before you leave the home, make sure a trustworthy neighbor knows that the child or children are home alone. Exchange phone numbers so that contact can be made by either party. Always keep a list of emergency contact phone numbers close at hand so the child has easy access to it at all times.
Our Final Say About Teaching Your Child About Home Security
Leaving your child or children home for the first time is a major milestone for you and them. It’s a right of passage that allows them more independence in return for more responsibility. Each child will reach this milestone at different ages. You know your child better than anyone else so granting this level of trust and responsibility should not be taken lightly.
Each child should be taught according to their ability to understand the concept of security without instilling fear or causing them to become overly frightened. Teach them the proper precautions and provide them with the right tools and they will be able to handle almost any situation that arises.
Great Valley Lockshop is always available to help you install new home security measures and will be happy to show your whole family how to use these new items. Give us a call at 610-644-5334 to discuss how we can help secure your home and make your child more comfortable using home security best practices.