|The threat of these natural disasters hangs above everyone on earth, including children. No one is safe from the damage and horrible events that might happen because of climate change / Photo by: Kampee Patisena via 123RF|
Climate change is real. Its effect is now evident all over the world. Whether we accept it or we turn a blind eye to it, we cannot escape the horrible truth that these events are mostly caused by our own irresponsibility and collective failure to protect the planet.
The threat of these natural disasters hangs above everyone on earth, including children. No one is safe from the damage and horrible events that might happen because of climate change, so it is important that children are educated on how to function in case of natural disasters. It is also recommended that children be part of disaster safety planning so that they can be safe on their own, even if things go south.
Disasters can be scary and stressful, but parents should refrain from shielding their children from the dark reality that surrounds natural tragedies. It is best for everyone to learn about it, so that we can properly take action to prepare ourselves from the disasters that might happen. As we educate ourselves about how natural disasters are caused, more and more people will inevitably start changing their lifestyles. They might even call out huge corporations that destroy natural resources while they're at it.
Familiarize Kids With Disasters
Parents can start educating their children about natural disasters by getting them to familiarize themselves with the different types of disasters. USA Today, an online platform news and information media company, reported on their website that this can be done by involving them in the creation of a disaster preparedness plan for the whole family.
Children are smart enough to pick up on other people’s emotions. Make sure that as you teach them about the calamities and disasters that might affect your area, you’re in the right condition. Choose a time when you’re calm and at ease before having a conversation with them about it. It is also recommended to prioritize the information needed and save the personal anecdotes for later, because the children might have a lot of questions that they want answered.
Try not to turn your disaster lecture into a horror story. Avoid overwhelming them but maintain a transparent and honest environment. Teenagers might be emotionally mature enough to understand the devastation when a major disaster happens, but younger children might need a more basic discussion regarding the emergency plans that are in place. Once you’re done laying out the main plan, ask the children about what they have in mind, and be open to their insights.
|Parents can start educating their children about natural disasters by getting them to familiarize themselves with the different types of disasters / Photo by: Polawat Klinkulabhirun via 123RF|
Teach Them to Handle Things on Their Own
As much as parents want to stay beside their children 24/7, that is just impossible. The time will come when they will have to go to school, and your children will be away from your home. Disaster can strike anywhere. This is why it is very important to start the kids’ education about disaster preparedness while they're young. The younger, the better.
Preparedness should be rooted in the home. It's difficult to imagine being away from your little kids when a catastrophe happens. But, House and Homestead, a website that provides useful resources for parenting and family issues, says that parents should trust the teachers in school because these professionals are equipped with the right information and tools to save their students in emergencies.
Educate your child about the emergency protocols they should follow inside and outside the home. This includes teaching them what number they should contact immediately when there’s an emergency. Children should also take note of school information that might come in handy when they need to call for help. Meanwhile, parents should also know their children’s schedules and the map of their school, especially for those institutions that have a lot of students.
Conduct Drills and Make Disaster Kits
Disaster drills at home are a good way to let your child know what to do during a crisis. Parents.com, a website that provides information about parenting, states that the drill you create for your child should encourage them to participate in it. However, it might be difficult to make them understand the importance of why you’re conducting the drill in the first place.
Parents should also focus on teaching their kids how to seek help and how to warn others of danger. Kids should learn how to exit their houses using the designated emergency exits. As the family prepares for the dangers that might happen, it should be of top priority that each member has a disaster kit ready. These kits must be placed in locations that can be reached easily.
Parents.com recommends that these kits include your child’s favorite snacks and a couple of things that they enjoy. Depending on your family’s needs, there should be a “general” disaster kit that contains diapers, formulas, medications, extra food supplies, batteries, and other equipment that the family might need.
|Disaster drills at home are a good way to let your child know what to do during a crisis / Photo by: Yusuke Madokoro via 123RF|