What to teach your children about home safety

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Good safety and security habits can start as soon as kids can pick up toys and lock (or unlock) the door. When everyone in the family does their part to protect each other's safety, everyone is safer.

Below, we've got some tips on how parents can teach kids to make safe choices and practice safe habits.

Young children

Nearly every event of a child's young life is a learning experience for them and a teaching experience for parents. Toddlers and young kids love to help and have jobs that make them feel like big kids.

These jobs or tasks are on their level and easy to understand or turn into a game:

  • Pick up toys around the house so they aren’t tripping hazards.
  • Secure bicycles and other outside toys.
  • Learn how to lock deadbolt locks.
  • Turn emergency evacuation practice into a game.
Prevent drowning

339 people from July 1st 2021 to June 30 2022 lost their lives to drowning, according to Royal Life Saving. Teach your young children to only go to the pool or run a bath when a grownup is with them, and use these tips to prevent drowning around pools, beaches, and lakes.

At this age, children respond to repetition and reinforcement. Regularly talk about rules that keep them safe:

  • Knives, scissors, and other kitchen utensils are off-limits without an adult.
  • Matches and lighters should be used only by an adult.
  • Answer the door or phone only if you can see an adult in the room.
  • Walk slowly in bathrooms, pool areas, and other wet, slippery places.
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Cooking together to teach kitchen safety

The kitchen can be a great place to bond with young kids and reinforce practical applications of safety rules. However, it can also be quite dangerous, especially with so many utensils that can hurt your little ones if mishandled. Make sure you emphasise to your child the importance of safety in the kitchen. 

Older children

Smartphones and social media have changed the game for parents of adolescents and tweens. Help them create safe habits to stay safe online and prevent cyberbullying by setting some ground rules. It's not enough to set the rules and wait for them to make a mistake. Parents should have ongoing discussions about what their kids are doing online, who they're talking to, and what could lead to danger.

A few don'ts for adolescents to follow online:

  • Don't divulge personal information on social media sites.
  • Don't post family holiday plans on social media.
  • Don't post holiday photos online until you and your family return from the trip.
  • Don't advertise when anyone is home alone or when parents are out for the evening.

Kids at this age are also capable of more complicated tasks in response to emergencies. Team them how to:

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Staying safe online

Kids are online for school, fun, and socializing. While it's not a new challenge for parents, it does keep changing. Our kids internet safety and our internet safety guide for teens can help you keep your kids safe.


In addition to all of the above information, you can add some home safety responsibilities to the lives of your teenagers. Teens can be responsible for arming and disarming home security systems, including using smartphone and tablet apps provided by most home security companies. Teens can also be helpful with teaching, instructing, and encouraging the younger children in your home to be as safe as they can and to think of security issues as often as possible.

Around the house, teens can be involved in the installation of a DIY home security system, if that’s what you decide to go with. Or if you opt for a professionally monitored service, you can have them be present when it’s installed so they learn about potential security weaknesses, like ground-level windows, unsecured garage doors, and dark areas that need motion sensor lights on your property.

No matter what age category your children fall into, they can play an active role in keeping your home secure. 

Hannah Geremia
Written by
Hannah Geremia
Hannah has had over six years of experience in researching, writing, and editing quality content. She loves gaming, dancing, and animals, and can usually be found under a weighted blanket with a cup of coffee and a book.

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