To help ensure that the children are safe on Halloween it is important to set down some basic rules. Both kids and parents need to be on the same page and taking just a few minutes to discuss the safety rules can save a lot of problems later on. Here is a list of topics you might want to talk about before hand:
1. Before they leave assign a time when they need to be home. Two or three hours is more than enough time to be out. Be sure parents know the route the kids will take.
2. Some parents insist on going with their children, others let them go by themselves for certain distance within the neighborhood. Children under 12 should be accompanied by an adult. Kids should never go by themselves and should go in groups of at least two buddies.
3. Incase children are separated from the group it is a good idea to attach a piece of paper with name, address and telephone numbers on it into their pocket or hemline. If they get upset over getting lost they may not remember vital information. Have them take a cell phone if possible, flashlight or gel stick is a good idea so they can see where they are going. Sometimes sidewalks are uneven or drop suddenly and it is a good idea to have a source of light to show them the way.
4. Be sure that your children know and obey all traffic rules. Cross in the cross walks and walk on the side-walk, don’t run and stay together.
5. Home made costumes are great fun to create. Ghosts out of sheets, gypsies from mom’s dress and jewelry, vampires and witches with a few pieces of black clothing and a hat or plastic teeth. Whether they are bought or made be sure that your children isn’t wearing something that could make them trip or that they may have trouble breathing or seeing through the material or mask. Fire retardant costumes are best.
6. Be cautious of strangers. It is a good idea to let the kids know how far is too far. Work out a neighborhood route and stick to it. Well lit areas and those the children are familiar with is always best. Be sure they know what is expected of them. They should know not to go into a stranger’s home. If there is an emergency have them look for a neighbor they know for help.
7. Parents may want to have something warm for children to drink when they get back home. Hot chocolate is always a hit. Be sure to go through the candy before any of it is consumed.