School is almost out and the lazy days of summer are here. Well, perhaps lazy isn’t accurate if you are a mom – summer can just mean listening to whines of “I’m so boooored” (drawn out as only a child can do) or schlepping from one activity to the next.
But summer should be about play. About discovering tadpoles turning into frogs in the local pond. About poking bugs, turning over rocks, or swinging from swings. Long afternoons perfecting a skateboard trick. Hosting outdoor tea parties for dolls. And, summer means bringing out the summer toys. Dump trucks, gardening spades, sand pails.
Outdoor play is great to keep kids healthy. But, before you turn the kids loose, review these easy steps to take to make summer play a littler safer from Malcolm Denniss, Technical Director for SGS Consumer Testing Services.
1) Check the protective gear. My 6 year old can already do some wicked tricks on his skateboard, but he wears protective gear. Malcolm emphasizes that protective gear is most important for kids out on their bikes, skate boards and other riding toys. Of course, helmets must fit correctly. He reminds us to make sure that last year’s helmet still fits before using it.
2) Use the right protective gear. Malcolm urges parents to make sure that they use the right gear. Remember there are different types of helmet for different activities.
3) Teach kids to stay safe. Malcolm believes kids can always use a reminder to stay away from traffic areas such as roads parking lots and driveways.
4) Pool safety. With summer comes pool fun. However, Malcolm advises that all pools should be properly protected with fences and self closing gates to ensure very young children cannot access the pool without adult supervision.
5) Check outdoor toys. Toys left outside weather. Before you let kids play with sand toys, dump trucks, gardening tools and other outdoor play items, just check them over carefully to make sure they haven’t deteriorated. A quick check can tell you whether a metal truck is rusty and has sharp edges.