Summertime often brings about many new experiences and opportunities for growth, allowing children to venture into unfamiliar areas as they explore new activities such as summer camp, going on field trips, and doing different activities designed to keep them busy during the hot months. However, as Early Childhood Programs prepare for this season, we must observe a safety plan to ensure the environment is hazard-free and children safe from harm. The following are a few safety plan tips.
When it comes to sunny weather, it is essential to ensure proper hydration - not only when children are involved in physical activities or exposed but also in direct sunlight. Limiting drinks such as soda, energy drinks, and fruit juices can worsen dehydration levels. Instead, please provide them with plenty of clean water to stay hydrated and consume foods with electrolytes to replenish lost fluids and minerals. Encourage parents to check their children's hydration levels by observing their urine color; it should be colorless or pale yellow, not deep gold.
Waterbody safety measure
When supervising toddlers near a body of water, ensure they always remain within arm's reach. Empty out any buckets, bathtubs, coolers, and wading pools once use is complete to prevent accidental drowning or other hazards. And if close to a swimming pool, every child should put on a life vest ― even those who know how to swim ―It's just an extra precaution for safety.
Avoid stagnant water
When the temperatures start to rise, a plethora of insects and other creatures will emerge in abundance, thus making it more likely for toddlers to experience stings and bruises. Steer clear of still bodies of stagnant water, as this harbors mosquitos. You can also keep an insect repellent handy can be a great measure to ensure the safety of both yourself and your students.
Frequent breaks for shade
Organize for the children to take regular breaks, say after 45 minutes, in the shade after playtime to minimize the threat of sunburn. Moreover, it is essential to remind parents that kids will need hats, sunglasses, and lightweight shirts that can reduce the chances of sunburn. Lastly, you can remind the parents to help apply sunscreen on the children as this significantly reduces sunburn.
In addition to adequately protecting your children from the sun, it is also worth ensuring that any surface they play on is kid friendly. For example, ensure all surfaces have no protrusions or other risks of tripping. Some great examples of kid-friendly grounds in nature include grassy and sandy areas with no bumps and broad open fields with plenty of natural shade from trees. All of these surfaces provide an ideal environment for your children to explore while minimizing the risk of harm.
By ensuring these essential safety measures, you can guarantee that the kids under your care will have an enjoyable and secure summer.
CDC. (n.a). Retrieved from: Keep Kids Safe This Summer | Health Equity Features | CDC
Recommended Online Course:
Understanding Building and Physical Safety
Description: This course will teach childcare professionals about building and physical safety. Professionals will learn common workplace hazards and strategies for maintaining proper indoor and outdoor safety based on your childcare role/position. Professionals will understand how to identify safety hazards and minimize the risk of caregiver or child injuries at learning programs.
By the end of this training, you will be able to:
Understand staff responsibilities for maintaining a safe childcare program
Use strategies to ensure a safe indoor and outdoor environment
Identify and minimize the risk of potential safety hazards on the premises of the childcare facility
Meet The Author
Sheika Petteway provide educational and leadership training to individuals and organizations. She is the founder and CEO of Elite Educational Enterprises and has several years experience serving in the early childhood education industry.