Parenting is not an easy task. Every decision you make should be made deliberately with appropriate planning. There is little room for error when it comes to the question of taking care of your children. It is important that you take every necessary precaution to ensure your children’s safety. Nothing is simple, as you know when you are a parent, including a trip to the playground. It’s not just another day at the park. There will be a lot of interactions with other parents and their kids, and this is the place where things can get tricky. Lack of preparation can lead you to inevitable trouble.
Here are 10 things you should consider as a parent when you take your kids to the playground:
Know your goal first
Your goal of taking your kids to the playground is quite simple. You want your kids to burn some energy while having fun with other children. For a release from the shackles of the house and devices, there isn’t any better alternative than a playground. Make sure the place has playground equipment that seems attractive to your kids.
Supervise but don’t hover
Keeping an eye on your kids when they are playing is a must. You can’t just let them do whatever they want when you are on a playground. Extra attention should be considered for the young, adventurous, and kids who love to wander around. But for the older kids, there is a line to maintain between supervision and hovering. If you want your kid to make friends and play with them, your hovering can make it difficult. Strike a balance between keeping your distance and keeping an eye on them to ensure that nothing goes wrong.
Be aware of the surroundings.
Besides paying attention to the kids, you should be attentive to the surroundings too. It’s quite easy to be involved in reading, surfing the internet, or just relaxing while sitting close to kids where they are playing. You need to be aware of any threat, from a stranger or insects like bees.
Playing for a long time on the playground will tire out any child. If it is a hot summer day, keeping them safe from dehydration is very important. Keeping them hydrated means you must bring water with you. Keep extra water bottles in a cooler in the car. Finding some shade and frozen treats may cool you, but the best thing to get after plenty of exercise is fresh water.
Pack snacks or lunch
Yes, staying hydrated is a must but your kids will also need foods to enjoy their time. You should bring foods depending on some specifics:
- When will you go there?
- How much time do you want to spend?
- Did your kids eat before playing?
- Do you have any plans to visit a restaurant?
These factors will help you decide how much food you should carry with you while taking your kids to the playground. To fuel their fun, they will need nutritious food, but do not overfeed them. It will ruin their momentum and make them sluggish.
A First Aid Kit is a must
Dangers come without knocking. Make sure you're prepared for any unwanted situation. Your kids may get hurt at any time while playing. So bring a First Aid Kit that provides primary treatment immediately. It would advisable to check that your first aid kit box contains:
- Adhesive Band-Aids
- Alcohol wipes
- Eye dressings
- Cold pack
- Bug spray
- Creams for relief from insect’s bite
Bring additional sports equipment
The playground itself has plenty of games and equipment. You may want to bring some additional sports equipment like Frisbees or balls with you. Another good idea is to keep some games and sports equipment in the car just in case if the playground is too crowded or your kids want to play somewhere besides the playground.
Wear closed-toe shoes
You know the playgrounds may contain sand, mulch, and other loose materials that can end up in your kid’s sandals or other open-toe footwear. Closed-toe shoes help keep sand, mulch, and other materials out. It also provides safety from the bugs and injuries so they can play safely without danger. Also, bring sneakers with you if you have any plan of walking before or after going to the playground.
Wear play clothes
A playground is not the place for school uniforms or a fashion show. Just encourage them to wear an outfit that matches the fun they'll have playing.
Follow signs and safety rules
Teach your kids about the signs and help them follow the guidelines. As a parent, you have to be aware of all the safety rules and make sure your kids don’t fall in any danger. Also, make your own safety rules for your kids and make them aware of those.
There are many more things to consider. Measures vary from kids to kids, parents to parents, and you need to think according to your kids' characteristics and norms. The above-described things are common for all. Don't compromise with these.