Home Safety, Parents' Overview, 2 - 7 yrs

Why is Home Safety education important?

According to the Child Accident Prevention Trust, while almost three-quarters of parents worry about their child having a bad accident, nearly half believe there is nothing they can do to stop accidents from happening... but you can make a difference! Children are keen to explore the world around them. They touch, smell and taste everything with little fear or understanding of potential danger. They usually feel they are safe with their parents, who keep them warm when they are chilly, feed them when they are hungry, play with them when they want to have fun and settle them to bed when they are sleepy; so almost everything appears safe to them in their world at home. However, homes are full of things that can injure, cut, trip, poison, choke, burn or scald.

Most children's 'accidents' happen in and around the home. Many are just minor bumps and scrapes, but some are more serious, which scar, disfigure and lead to permanent disability or even death. Most of these can be prevented, if parents (as well as children) are more aware of the risks and take precautions.

As children learn and develop lifelong habits (including how to keep safe) from an early age, Nationwide Education's Home Safety programmes begin with young children, aged two. The aim is to further develop their knowledge as they grow, giving them a sound understanding of the risks in and around the home.

Nationwide Education's Home Safety programme for children aged 2-11 includes:

The main areas of risk that are covered in each programme:

  • Trips, Slips and Falls
  • Fire and Heat
  • Sharp Things
  • Poisons

This Parents' section is designed to help you become more aware of the risks around the home and, in turn, work together with your children to learn more about keeping safe, whilst having fun. It includes instructions on how to use the resources, a Word Bank giving clear explanations of safety-related words in child-friendly language, home safety tips, emergency plans and lots of suggestions of activities for you and your child.

'Sam's Birthday' story book (2 to 4)

'Sam's Birthday' story book (2 to 4)

This story book, created in the style of a 'rag' book, is a fun activity featuring a story and an interactive activity – 'Find the Dangers' - designed to help children become familiar with different types of household danger.

Ideally, for each page, children should first read or hear the story and then complete the task, before moving on to the next page.

Aim: To introduce children to home safety issues in a fun and engaging way, whilst helping to develop children's reading skills

Methodology:

Click on the green arrow keys at bottom right to turn the pages forwards or backwards, or click and drag the page across the screen, as you might turn the pages of a book.

Click the 'Find the dangers' button for a reminder to find four dangers in the picture and the types of dangers to look for. As the mouse is moved over each picture, key words (related to the dangers) appear and are read aloud. When the danger is then clicked on, it is highlighted with a red circle and a warning message can be heard. There is a sound effect when the child finds all four dangers.

Click the 'Hear the story' button to hear the story read aloud.

Click the 'Read the story' button to see the words of the story (displayed over the image). Click on the cross to make the words disappear again.

Issues covered in the story:

The story is set in a family home as the family prepares for Sam's third birthday party. The story is told in picture form as well as simple one line sentences and is all about the day of Sam's birthday.

Four main examples of dangers can be found on each page and these can be discussed with the children as they find each one but there are other potential risks that may cause problems too. Key safety messages include:

  • understanding what danger is and keeping an eye out for it
  • staying away from fire and things that are hot
  • not touching sharp things
  • recognising and avoiding poisonous things (including old food and medicine)
  • being careful when moving about
  • cleaning up mess or spills that can be tripped over or slipped on
  • avoiding dangerous places like garden sheds
  • not leaving things in places where they can fall and break.

Read the 'Sam's Birthday' story book.

Page 1: The Kitchen

Page 1: The Kitchen

  • Sharp knives left out
  • Electrical cables hanging that can be caught and pull the kettle down
  • Hot things like the kettle and toaster that can scald or burn
  • Poisonous chemicals and cleaning things

Page 2: The Kitchen

Page 2: The Kitchen

  • Hot ovens and open gas flames
  • Tea towels left near flames on cooker
  • Saucepan handles sticking out that can be knocked and pour boiling liquid down
  • Dropping sticky food stuff on floor where you could slip or trip
  • Wobbly high stools where you could fall

Page 3: The Lounge

Page 3: The Lounge

  • Overloaded electricity sockets, which could catch fire and burn, or you could trip on cables
  • Tripping over ruckled rugs
  • Too many toys left on the floor where you could trip
  • Broken glass vases where you could cut yourself

Page 4: The Hallway

Page 4: The Hallway

  • Cables from hoover where you could trip
  • Glass bowls on edges of table which could fall and break
  • Reaching up whilst on stairs where you could overbalance and fall
  • Hot irons left out
  • Open wall socket

Page 5: The Bedroom

Page 5: The Bedroom

  • An open window where you could fall out
  • Broken drinking glass where you could cut yourself
  • Old biscuits left out, which could be mouldy
  • A banana skin on the floor where you could slip or trip
  • Open socket

Page 6: The Bathroom

Page 6: The Bathroom

  • Medicines and tablets, which can be poisonous if not prescribed for you
  • Open sharp scissors that could cut
  • Mat where you could trip
  • Hot tap left running on full where you could burn yourself
  • A full bath where you could drown

Page 7: The Shed

Page 7: The Shed

  • Huge number of sharp pointed tools that can cut or hurt
  • Electric cable, which could be tripped over or pulled at
  • The drill itself, which is electric
  • Open socket
  • Nails and screws, which are not only sharp but very dangerous if put in the mouth
  • Cat litter which is poisonous
  • Fuel for lawn mower, which is poisonous

Page 8: The Barbecue

Page 8: The Barbecue

  • Open matches, which could start a fire
  • Hot barbecue, which could burn
  • Wind blowing tablecloth, which could catch light on the barbecue flames
  • Broken bottle on the ground, which could cut

Page 9: The Garden Party

Page 9: The Garden Party

  • Pointed sharp barbecue tools
  • Hot flames of the barbecue
  • Spilt drink where you could slip
  • Dangerous tools in the shed

'Tiger's House' story book (4 to 7)

This story book is a fun activity in which pages can be turned onscreen. You can read the story yourself, ask your child to read or play the narration and see the words highlight. The reader is asked to find and click on five particular dangers in each picture, but there are many more to discuss.

Aim: To introduce children to home safety issues in a fun and engaging way, whilst helping to develop children's reading skills

Methodology:

Use the arrow keys by the 'Turn page' button on the far right of the screen to turn pages forwards or backwards (page numbers are displayed in the middle of the toolbar).

Click on the 'Full story' button to access the full story. Click on the 'Short story' button to access the easier version.

Use the 'Contents' button to show the contents page with a list of rooms/areas of the house. (Click on any of these to go to that room/area.)

Use the 'Play' button to have the story read aloud with synchronised words highlighting.

Use the 'Pause' button to pause the story or select individual words for discussion.

Use the 'Stop' button to stop the narration. Issues covered in the story:

 

'Tiger's House' (Chapter 1)

In Chapter 1, Tiger the Cat sees Poppy being taken off to hospital in an ambulance and learns that she has been hurt at home. He is determined to go through the house and find out how she might have hurt herself, in order to make the house safer for the family. The story shows different rooms or areas around the house (kitchen, lounge, hall, landing, bedroom, bathroom, garden, garden shed) – each has a number of things that are or can be dangerous. Once you have read part of the story, there are pictures of five dangers – as you move the mouse over each picture, key words appear. You can find them in the picture on the next page. When the danger is clicked on, it is highlighted with a red circle. Once all five are found, you are asked to think about what else might be unsafe in the picture.

Four main examples of dangers can be found on each page and these can be discussed with the children as they find each one but there are other potential risks that may cause problems too. Key safety messages include: understanding what danger is and keeping an eye out for it staying away from fire and things that are hot not touching sharp things recognising and avoiding poisonous things (including old food and medicine) being careful when moving about cleaning up mess or spills that can be tripped over or slipped on avoiding dangerous places like garden sheds not leaving things in places where they can fall and break. The story covers four types of danger: Trips, Slips and Falls; Fire and Heat; Sharp Things and Poisons. There are examples of these in each room or area of the house.

The Kitchen (Chapter 2)

The Kitchen (Chapter 2)

  • Hot oven
  • Saucepan handles sticking out over the cooker edge
  • Open sink cupboard with poisonous cleaning things
  • Hot iron left on and cable trailing
  • Sharp bread knife left out
  • Spilt liquid
  • Open window
  • Breakable flowerpot on window sill
  • Uncovered food left out
  • Kettle with trailing cable
  • Matches left out
  • Glass jar close to the table edge
  • Refrigerator door open
  • Bees or wasps
  • Open sockets

The Lounge (Chapter 3)

The Lounge (Chapter 3)

  • Toys/DVDs/food left on the floor
  • Hot drink on the coffee table
  • Glasses on the edge of the coffee table and chair
  • Spilt drink
  • Sharp scissors on the floor
  • Uneven rug
  • Lit candles near the curtains
  • Overloaded electric socket on the wall
  • Electrical cables trailing on the floor
  • Alcohol left out
  • Model owl ornament on edge of shelf
  • Open food left out and drink
  • Vase with water on the television
  • Remote control half under rug
  • Open container of tablets

The Hall (Chapter 4)

The Hall (Chapter 4)

  • Hoover cable stretched out
  • Shoes, bags and toys on the floor
  • Open sockets Hall cupboard door open with cleaning products
  • Too much balanced on the bookcase and on shelf in cupboard
  • Mess on the stairs
  • Glass vase close to the table edge
  • Uneven door mat
  • Telephone cable trailing on the floor
  • Cleaning items in cupboard
  • Dripping cloth and bucket of water

The Landing (Chapter 5)

The Landing (Chapter 5)

  • Loft door left open
  • Loft ladder out
  • Toys and clutter on and near the stairs
  • Tricycle close to the stairs
  • Glass fishbowl and plant close to the edge of the cabinet
  • Fish food left out (poisonous to humans)
  • Towel and things over the banister
  • Broken rail Hot drink left out
  • Overloaded box on edge of chest of drawers

The Bedroom (Chapter 6)

The Bedroom (Chapter 6)

  • Bedside lamp cable hanging down
  • Overloaded electrical sockets with lots of plugs
  • Cable across the doorway
  • Toys, paints and jar of water left on the floor
  • Ruffled rug with toy underneath
  • Chest of drawers messy and all drawers open so it could topple
  • Glass on the edge of the chest of drawers
  • Open window Box on the edge of the wardrobe ready to fall Too much on the shelves Toy chest lid not properly shut

The Bathroom (Chapter 7)

The Bathroom (Chapter 7)

  • Hot water tap left on
  • Water in bath too full
  • Medicines in the open cupboard
  • Toys left on the floor
  • Shampoos and cleaning things in the open cupboard
  • Sharp scissors on the floor
  • Electrical heater with cable trailing
  • Uneven rug on slippery floor
  • Hairdryer with cable trailing and near the vase with water
  • Scales in the middle of the floor
  • Too much on window sill
  • Too much on edge of wall shelf

The Garden (Chapter 8)

The Garden (Chapter 8)

  • Garden pond full of water
  • Stinging nettles
  • Poisonous berries
  • Broken glass on the ground
  • Fire left unattended
  • Electrical extension lead with cable trailing
  • Sharp hedge trimmer on the ground
  • Rake left out
  • Slippery leaves on ground

The Garden Shed (Chapter 9)

The Garden Shed (Chapter 9)

  • Heavy and sharp garden and work tools
  • Sharp nails left out on floor
  • Poisonous weedkillers, paints, etc. in tins and bottles
  • Open sockets
  • Trailing cables
  • Hose pipe and water dripping
  • Water spilt from the hose
  • Things that could be knocked and fall
  • Ladder rung missing
  • Things balanced on the edge of the table and shelves
  • Electrical power tools like saws and drills
  • Open cans of paint and uncleaned brushes
  • Small nails and screws
  • Sharp broken pieces of wood and nails sticking out
  • Electric lawn mower