Physical Fitness

The psychical fitness of young children is extremely important. It provides the build stones for the rest of their lives. Young children will form healthy habits early in life. As early childhood professionals we need to teach children the importance of physical activity and fitness during this impressionable time (NAEYC. 2011).

Here are five points as to why physical fitness is important for young children:

  • It helps prevent chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, asthma and much more. Children who are physically fit are less likely to get an illness because their diet is well balanced and they are physically active. (Robertson. 2013).
  • It decreases the likelihood of being obese (Robertson. 2013).
  • It builds, stretches and strengthens all their muscles (Robertson. 2013).
  • It boosts their brain development and cognitive activity (Robertson. 2013).
  • It strengthens their bones and will help prevent tiredness (Robertson. 2013).

Here are three developmental skills that children are learning at this young age and ways that physical activity can help them master these skills.

First, children will learn gross motor skills by walking, running, jumping, and climbing. Physical activity can help improve these skills in outdoor play. Early childcare outdoor spaces and equipment allow children to practice and improve these skills. Young children need these motors skills to advance in life, they are an essential part of learning at a young age (Robertson. 2013).

Second, children learn fine motor skills by writing, holding small items, buttoning clothing, turning pages, and eating. Fine motor skills require coordination and control of small muscles. This is why building these muscles through physical fitness is so important.

Third, children learn cognitive skills by critical thinking, problem solving, exploring, putting items together and breaking them. Physical activity can enhance these skills by counting the number of time the child has walked past the teacher during “duck duck goose.” Children can play games like pass the ball by describing them in their color, texture, and shape. Making a game a cognitive learning session (Goodway & Robertson. 2013).

When children do not engage in healthy fitness activities they are exposed to chronic diseases such as asthma, cancer, diabetes, and cardio vascular diseases. Children also have a higher risk of becoming obese which can then lead to the chronic diseases stated above. It’s a circle of cause and effect. If you’re being lazy and spending all your time on electronic devices then you’re not going to want to be outside and physically active. But then if you are outside and you are physically active you won’t be lazy because you’ll actually have the energy. Another point that often gets over looked is children who are obese are more likely to have a low self-esteem because there are some physical activities they aren’t able to perform without being embarrassed. Having a lack of physical activity can lead to a wide range of developmental setbacks for children, this is why it is so important to get children more engaged in physical activities early in life.

There are many ways adults and parents can help children develop good fitness habits. One of the most obvious is to be a good role model for young child, show them that you are active and healthy so they can follow in your footsteps. Parents and teachers could put on an obstacle course game where they can use multiple games to improve development of the gross motor skills. Games like jumping over a log, skipping to a song, jump roping, jumping jacks, rolling down a hill, and many other outdoor activities to get the children physically active and their development encouraged. Parents and teachers could have the children do side walk chalk drawings of each other’s shadows to improve development of the fine motor skills. This activity gets the children outside in fresh air while using their hands to learn writing and drawing skills. Finding activities that promote gross and fine motor skill development during physical activity is important. Children can achieve this with the help of the adults around them.

Here are a few inspirational and thought-provoking quotes:

“The problem of childhood obesity can be improved by an increase in physical activity, diet management, and behavior modification. Physical activity alone does not seem to be effective, but the addition of diet and behavior modification contributes to successful weight loss in obese children (Robertson. 2013).”

“All it takes to encourage an active start is a little time and imagination and a commitment to a healthy lifestyle (NAEYC. 2011).”

“If children are given goals for physical activity that are reachable, it is much easier to expect them to achieve a healthy level of activity as part of their fitness regime (Robertson, 2013).”

“Physical activity is not merely necessary to the health and development of the body, but to balance and correct intellectual pursuits as well. The mere athlete is brutal and philistine, the mere intellectual unstable and spiritless. The right education must tune the strings of the body and mind to perfect spiritual harmony (Plato).”

By showing young children the importance of physical fitness we can start impacting their lives for the better at a younger age. Help them realize that if they don’t start now it could have major effects later in life. Physical fitness can be an essential part to a healthy long life.

References:

Goodway, J. D., & Robinson, L. E. (2006, March). SKIPing toward an active start: Promoting     physical activity in preschoolers. Beyond the Journal: Young Children on the Web. Retrieved from http://www.naeyc.org/files/yc/file/200605/GoodwayBTJ.pdf

National Association for the Education of Young Children. (2011). Why preschoolers need physical education. Retrieved from https://www.naeyc.org/files/yc/file/201103/Leaps&Bounds_Online0311.pdf

Robertson, C. (2013). Safety, nutrition, and health in early education (5th Ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.

Healthy Food and Nutrition

Having the right nutrition and eating healthy are so important to young children as they grow. Children need basic nutrition for normal growth and development, resistance to illnesses, cognitive functioning, and energy (Robertson. 2013). A child’s highest rate of grown is during infancy, so receiving the appropriate amount of nutrient-rich meals is key for the energy they will need at this time for their rapid growth (Robertson. 2013). To continue to grow up properly and healthy they need to continue to receive the right amount of nutrient-rich meals. In our text Robertson (2013) states, “Foods provide the basic nutrients needed for the body to grow, repair, regulate, and maintain itself “ (p. 229).

Adults, such as parents, teachers and childcare workers, should actively help children develop health eating habits that will last their lifetime (Robertson, 2013). At such a young age these children lack the right skills to make smart and healthy choices about food so they need adults to help guide and teach them. One way we as childcare workers can help a child establish healthy eating habits is through teaching control over food by creating limits surrounding food, being consistent in food choices and providing opportunities for children to exercise their own control over food (Robertson, 2013). As adults we can also model the right eating habits, young children watch every move and choice we make so when we chose to eat vegetables over sweets, they might chose to do the same thing. So if we are excited about try a new vegetable the children watching you will see that excitement and want it. I think the best way to get children excited and involved is by letting them help you make the menus, go grocery shopping, and prepare the meals. Children thrive off of being a part of something and helping create it. In our text Robertson (2013) says, “Encouraging children to be a part of the process can empower them with the knowledge and awareness necessary to make better nutritional choices” (p. 315).

Cooking with children can be a challenge sometimes but it’s fun for them and they are learning about nutritious meals and how to prepare them. Here are three examples of healthy, kid-friendly recipes that include food choices that provide a good balance of the nutrients children need for healthy growth and development.

Recipe 1: Vegan Almost Raw Cookie Dough Balls (Vegangela. 2014)

Prep Time: 15 Minutes

Total Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Gluten Free Oats
  • 1 Ripe Banana
  • ½ Cup Grated Dry Unsweetened Coconut
  • 3 TBSP Agave Syrup
  • 2 TBSP Coconut Oil
  • 1 TSP Vanilla Extract
  • ½ Cup Vegan Chocolate Chips

Instructions:

  1. In a food processor, add the oats, and pulse for 20 seconds in order to break the oats down slightly.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients (EXCEPT the chocolate chips) and pulse until fully combined.
  3. Stir-in the chocolate chips.
  4. If the dough is too soft/sticky, refrigerate for 10 minutes to harden it slightly, then roll into 12 balls and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
  6. Enjoy!

Recipe 2: Perfect Peach Smoothie (Woodward. 2013)

Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Total Time: 5 Minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 Frozen Banana
  • 1 Peach
  • 6 Frozen Strawberries
  • ½ Cup Almond Milk
  • A Few Ice Cubes

Optional Ingredients:

  • 1 TBSP Ground Flaxseed
  • 1 TBSP Chia Seeds

Instructions:

  1. Cut and freeze banana and strawberries the day before. So they are ready in the morning.
  2. Cut peach into small pieces.
  3. Place all fruit in a blender with the almond milk and ice cubes. Add optional items as well.
  4. Blend until smooth. Depending on how thick or runny you like your smoothies you might like to add more liquid, either more almond milk or a little water.
  5. Enjoy!

Recipe 3: Chicken Salad (Kids Health. 2012)

Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Total Time: 10 Minutes

Ingredients:

  • ½ Cup Plain Nonfat Greek Yogurt
  • ¼ Cup Low-fat Mayonnaise
  • ½ TSP Salt
  • ½ TSP Black Pepper
  • 1 Large Celery Stalk, Finely Chopped
  • ¼ Cup Red Onion, Finely Chopped
  • ½ Cup Grapes, Cut in Half
  • 2 Cups Roasted Chicken, Chopped into Small Chunks
  • 4 Cups Romaine Lettuce, Coarsely Chopped

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, salt, pepper, celery, red onion, grapes, and chicken.
  2. Mix gently until everything is well coated in dressing.
  3. Divide lettuce between four bowls.
  4. Top each bowl with some chicken salad. Serve cold.
  5. Enjoy!

To make the cooking fun for children, adults should talk about the cooking activity and encourage their children to participate in making it. Always try and make it sound interesting and exciting for the children so they can choose to join in on making the meal on their own, rather than you forcing them to help. Make the kitchen an inviting place to work in. Play some music in the background or make up your own song about the food your creating. Get the children involved, ask them to help get all the ingredients out of the cabinets and refrigerator. Have a stool ready so they can be up and able to see what’s going one. Have them help stir or even cut using children’s safety knives (http://curiouschef.com/). We should always praise and encourage the children for their efforts, so they can become more confident in their cooking skills. Also, going over the nutritional value of each ingredient with the children will help them understand the importance of each and the benefit they have. Lastly, just have fun and be safe!

References:

Kids Health. (2012). Recipes for kids. Retrieved from http://kidshealth.org/kid/recipes/recipes/chicken_salad.html#cat20229

Robertson, C. (2013). Safety, nutrition, and health in early education (5th Ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.

Vegangela. (2014). Dessert recipes: almost raw cookie dough balls. Retrieved from http://vegangela.com/2014/01/10/almost-raw-cookie-dough-balls/

Woodward, E. (2013). Deliciously Ella. Retrieved from http://deliciouslyella.com/recipe/perfect-peach-smoothie/

CPR and Choking Emergencies

An essential skill every teacher, childcare worker, or parent should have is CPR and choking training. One of the most important things a teacher can do is be prepared for these potential emergencies to happen. All childcare locations should have prepared and posted policies and procedures to follow for choking and CPR emergencies. During any emergency teachers and childcare workers should always act immediately to protect the child and surrounding children while remaining calm (Robertson. 2013).

There are so many different scenarios and responses that can happen or go through your mind during the event or even during training. But I have chosen two scenarios to go through and explain the proper emergency procedures. Here are the two:

The first scenario is a choking emergency. The teachers and childcare workers of a preschool are taking a group of 2 – 3 year old children outside to the schools yard to have a picnic lunch. They had packed a nutritious lunch including strawberries but the strawberries had not been cut and the teachers did not bring a knife. One of the teachers shows the children how to properly bite and chew on a strawberry but even with this instruction a choking emergency can happen and one did. As the children begin to eat their lunch one child appears to not be eating but upon closer inspection they appear to be choking. The child is not making any noise and is not coughing, which indicates that the child’s airway is blocked. Teachers must know how to act immediately when a child’s airway is blocked. To remove the lodged piece of strawberry the teacher must perform the Heimlich Maneuver until the piece of strawberry is dislodged from their throat and the child can breathe again (Heller. 2013). The teacher must be trained in first aid to perform the Heimlich Maneuver even though they are fairly simple to perform. Once the teacher is able to dislodge the strawberry and the child can breathe again make sure the child is comforted and remains calm to insure no other incidents happen. While the child is now safe, the parents of the child should be notified and a report of the incident should be filed (Robertson, 2013).

In this emergency scenario there were steps that could have been taken to prevent this child from choking. The teachers and childcare workers should not take any chances with food handling. They should have sent one worker back inside to cut the strawberries up in to smaller piece so the children could eat them easier. Doing so would have ensured the pieces were small enough that the children would not choke on them.

The second scenario is a CPR emergency. CPR stands for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and can be described as a combination of chest compressions, which keeps the blood circulating, and rescue breathing, which provides oxygen to the lungs. For a child CPR can be lifesaving, but it needs to be done by someone trained by an accredited CPR course to insure proper procedures are followed. A first grade class is outside at recess with two teachers supervising, all the children know the rules of playing on the playground but they may not always follow them. Suddenly a teacher hears a child scream behind her. She turns and noticed two children one lying on the ground who appears unconscious and the other standing near them looking scared. The teacher immediately assesses their surroundings and tells the other teacher on recess duty to call 911 right away, never leave the child alone have someone else call (Robertson, 2013). The teacher ten rushes over to the child on the ground, she begins by asking if the child is okay and conscious. There is no response from the child, the teacher then must make sure the child is on their back. The teach will then preform chest compressions, to perform a chest compression you must follow these steps: place the heel of one hand on the breastbone, making sure your heel is not at the very end of the breastbone; keep your other hand on the child’s forehead while keeping the head tilted back; press down on the child’s chest so that it compresses about 1/3 to 1/2 the depth of the chest; give 30 chest compressions, each time let the chest rise fully, these compressions should be fast and hard with no resting (Heller. 2013). Next the teacher needs to open the child’s airway by lifting the chin with one hand and at the same time tilting the head by pushing down on the forehead with the other hand. The teacher must look for chest movement, listen for breathing near mouth and feel for breath on their cheek (Heller. 2013). If the child is then not breathing the teacher must begin rescue breathing. The teacher must follow these steps for rescue breathing: cover the child’s mouth tightly with your mouth; pinch the nose closed, keep the chin lifted and head tilted; give 2 rescue breaths, each breath should take about a second and make the chest rise (Heller. 2013). The teacher should continue to do CPR until trained EMT rescue crew has arrive.

With this emergency, like with any the most important thing for the teacher and childcare workers to do is be calm and have the CPR training so they can help save a child’s life. Like in the other scenario an incident report must be filled out by the teacher involved and put in the child’s file. Another teacher should also have notified a parent and created an action plan, either the parents come to the school to be with their child or meet their child at the hospital (Robertson. 2013).

It is important to remember the significance of having the proper training in the event of CPR and choking emergencies, like these two scenarios. Teachers and childcare workers must always have emergency contact numbers of family members easily accessible, the local poison control and emergency numbers by the phones, first aid kit supplies (more than one), and regular drills should be practiced so that everyone knows what to do when an emergency occurs. Never underestimate what a child can do. Stay calm and be prepared to save a child’s life.

References:

Heller, J. (2013). Choking- adult or child over 1 year. Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000049.htm

Heller, J. (2013). Choking – child 1 to 8 years. Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000012.htm

Robertson, C. (2013). Safety, nutrition, and health in early education (5th Ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.

Emergency Preparedness: Natural and Human-Generated Disasters

As educators in an early childcare center one of the most important things we can do to ensure their safety is to be prepared and ready for any type of emergency at any given time. Having this knowledge that could save their lives is essential. Natural and human generated disasters, such as earthquakes, winter storms, flooding, bomb threats, arsonists or an intruder, can happen at any minute and without warning. Forming detailed plans for each type of natural and human generated disaster will help educators and staff be prepared, organized and knowledgeable of how to handle each specific emergency. According to the American Red Cross, being prepared can assure you and your children that you can apply your knowledge even in the event of a disaster or emergency (American Red Cross. 2012). In this part of my blog, I will explain two specific disaster scenario, winter storms and bomb threats. Both could threaten any early childhood environment. I will determine the procedures that must be taken to ensure the safety of the children and also assess the risks.

The first disaster scenario I have chosen is the human generated disaster, a bomb threat. For most people who went through high school during my generation they know what a bomb threat feels like. For a young child I can only imagine how much worse it can feel, so being prepared and having the knowledge to get them safely through it is an essential quality for me. School bomb threats can create a significant amount of anxiety in any school community (National School Safety and Security Services, 2012). In all types of emergency the first step to ensure safety is to take preventive actions to prepare in the event of a bomb threat. One way to be prepared for a bomb threat is to provide training to all school personnel, including administration and custodians, on bomb threat action procedures. Creating a bomb threat checklist, searching different procedures, crime scene management, evacuation procedures, and recovery training and crisis guidelines (National School Safety and Security Services. 2012). For example in the high school I attended they have placed caller ID on school phones to help identify bomb threat callers and also discuss and exercise drills to prepare students for any potential bomb threat situations. In the event of a bomb threat, there are specific procedures for all staff involved to evaluate the incident. School administrative staff whom answer phone calls should have a bomb threat checklist accessible to them with a list of questions to ask a bomb threat caller and characteristics to note during the call. A notification system should also be designed to know whom to notify. Search procedures for suspicious items should be done by school staff familiar with the property, and by each teacher who is most familiar with their own classrooms (Trump, 1999).

There is always the issue of false bomb threats being made by students who see it as a chance to get out of class. Evacuating students and staff efficiently can also be a problem some schools face. I have personally been through a false threat which cause the whole student body to be evacuated from the building into the football stadium in cold weather awaiting the okay to return to class. In every bomb threat situations, it is important to treat all threats seriously, and then to work with local law enforcement to determine the case-by-case protocol and procedures for evacuation (National School Safety and Security Services, 2012).

The second disaster scenario I have chosen is the natural disaster, a winter storm. Winter storms can be predicted by the weather channel or might occur suddenly without warning. Winter storms are notorious for causing break down of transportations and can cause car accidents, power failure and injuries (Southern WV Preparedness Partnership, 2013).

In this situation there are many dangers, children and educators are at risk of being in the dark, freezing in the cold and starving by not having any power supplies that gives heat and refrigerated food. Bus drivers and parents could be at risk of getting into an accident because of the storm. Preparing your car for winter weather is essential in areas like West Virginia were we frequently get severe snow storms during the winter months. Placing a winter emergency kit in each care that includes: shovel, windshield scraper, flashlight, battery powered radio, extra batteries, water, non-perishable snack food, matches, hats, socks, mittens, blankets, first aid kit, emergency flares, and any other essential items can save your life if you were to get stuck (Southern WV Preparedness Partnership, 2013). If the staff aren’t prepared and haven’t checked the weather information there will be no means of providing transportation to children if parents are unable to pick their children up and buses will not have snow tires and that could lead to road accidents .The classroom will be dark and cold without a generator.

When preparing for winter storms educators and staff should be listening to radios and weather channels, so they are aware of any possible winter storms. Prepare for possible isolation in your center by having a sufficient heating fuel and even a generator if available. Learn how to shut off water valves in case a water pipe were to bursts or to prevent them from bursting. Building owners should hire a contractor to check the structural ability of the roof to sustain unusually heavy weight from the accumulation of snow (Southern WV Preparedness Partnership, 2013). Educators should always be mentally prepared for such risks and able to prepare the children as well so they are ready to answer when an emergency occurs and can react accordingly because they know the emergency procedures (Robertson, 2013). Bring prepared for a winter storm takes a lot of work and the right mindset. It can become very dangerous and without the right knowledge you could be in serious danger.

In any and all emergencies, natural disasters or human generated disasters, it is important to have preventive safety measures, actions and procedures, and to always remain calm. All schools should have specific emergency plans for each disaster and danger. All staff, teachers and educators must be knowledgeable of the planned procedures to protect the safety of the children and themselves.

References:

American Red Cross. (2012). Plan & Prepare. Retrieved on March 14, 2015. From http://www.redcross.org/prepare

National School Safety and Security Services. (2012). School bomb threats and bombs. Retrieved on March 14, 2015. From http://www.schoolsecurity.org/trends/school-bomb-threats-and-bombs/

Robertson, C. (2013). Safety, nutrition, and health in early education (5th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.

Southern West Virginia Preparedness Partnership. (2013). Winter storms and extreme cold. Retrieved on March 14, 2015. From http://www.wvprepared.org/beprepared/winter_storms_and_extreme_cold

Trump, Kenneth S. (1999). How to handle bomb threats and suspicious devices. Retrieved on March 14, 2015. From http://www.schoolsecurity.org/trends/SP&MBombArticle1999.pdf

Safety Practices and Policies

Safety is being protected from risk, danger, or injury. As a child care provider safety is essential. The safety of an infant and toddler requires the caregiver to evaluate the environment that is surrounding them and create safety practices and policies that will protect and prevent them from any possible injury. Infant and toddlers are at their most vulnerable stage in life, there are a plethora of potential safety hazards that could happen at anytime and anywhere.

In this first blog post I will go over five potentially hazardous situations or safety threats common to infants and toddlers. I will also go over how to prevent and process these situations and safety policies that can be useful to your everyday care for these infants and toddlers. The five hazardous situations and threats are: choking/suffocation, drowning, poisonous chemicals, falls, and electrical items.

The first hazard, choking and suffocation are the most common injury in infants and toddlers that can even possibly result in death (Robertson. 2013). Children at this age are most at risk for this because of small objects that they can put into their mouths. There are some measure that you can take to prevent infants and toddlers from choking or suffocating. The environments infants and toddlers are in should be constantly and carefully monitored for small objects and soft objects. Always check floors and any reachable area for small objects like pins, coins, or buttons. Toys should be larger than two inches in diameter. Cribs should be free of plastics or pillows, the crib slats should be less than 25/8 inches apart, and the space between mattress and slats should be less than two fingers wide. Be sure that blinds or curtain strings are pulled up and out of reach (Robertson. 2013). From my own experience working with infants and toddler I have learned to carefully inspect the areas of my work areas and home for any small choking and suffocation hazards. I have learned to make sure I know where the child is at all times to insure safety. In my home I make sure I have a spot for all small item such as coins, buttons or random small items that an infant could possibly choke on. I make sure to prepare food that is small enough that the child will not choke and to properly teach a toddler how to chew their food slowly and enough so they won’t choke. I teach a toddler to never put anything in their mouth because it is not safe, but to always have a safe home because knowing a toddler they will still put something in their mouth even if you tell them not to. So always be on the lookout for small items and soft thing that could potentially hurt an infant or toddler.

The second hazard, drowning is the second major cause for death in children under five (Robertson. 2013). It is essential under any condition to always have direct adult supervision when an infant or toddler is near any amount of water. Drowning can occur in a very small amount of water such as a water bowl for a pet. A curious infant or toddler could lose balance and fall face into it. Even a toilet with the seat left up could be hazardous for a toddler who is curious and falls into it. Some safety measures you could follow would be to never leave standing water in anything even the sink and bathtub, to also never leave an infant or toddler unattended near any amount of water. Never leave an infant or toddler in the bath alone even if they are strapped to a bath seat. When your toddler is ready and older enough teach them about water safety and how to use a toddler lifejacket near a pool. Even starting parent and infant swim lessons can be useful, then do toddler swim lessons. It is so important to always be vigilant when it comes to water and the potentially drowning hazards that surround it.

The third hazard, poisonous chemicals can be found in every home and childcare center. Cleaning supplies, cosmetics, hygiene products and medicines can extremely dangerous for an infant and toddler who is too young to even begin to understand what these items are used for. Infants and toddlers are very curious and leaving a cosmetic item like anti-aging cream were they can reach it and potentially put into their mouth or eyes is very dangerous and can cause them to become sick. Ingesting any of the items above can be seriously dangerous for an infant and toddler. Some measures you can take to insure an infant and toddler do not get into these poisonous chemicals would be to keep them locked up, kept up high in a cabinet or to not have them in your home at all (Robertson. 2013). You should post the poison control number next to the phone in case of an emergency. Another precaution you could chose to do is have your child tested for lead poison during regular checkups to be sure your infant or toddler hasn’t gotten a hold of something that has lead in it. You could also buy safe nonchemical art supplies for your toddler to ensure no poisoning happens if your child happens to put a painted hand in their mouth. Always be cautious with potentially poisonous items around infants and toddler.

The fourth hazard, electrical items can cause serious physical injury to an infant or toddler if not kept properly. Electrical outlets that are not covered can shock a curious infant or toddler if they touch it. An electrical cord with exposed wires could also shock them. There are multiple safety measure you can take to ensure an infant or toddler does not touch get shocked. Keep electrical cords out of reach by wrapping them up and under a table or behind a cabinet. Making sure these electrical cords are being properly cared for to ensure no breaks are exposing live wires. Use shock stops to cover used and unused electrical outlets (Robertson. 2013). Always having supervision in areas with electrical items is important.

The fifth hazard, falls are a huge concern with infants and toddlers. The most common falls for infants and toddler are falling down the stairs when using an infant walker, falls from changing tables and falls from chairs, couches or beds (Robertson. 2013). An infant can wiggle, move, and push, rollover, crawl, and creep. An infant can fall off a changing table even if the safety strap is used. Some safety precautions you can take are using safety gates on stairs and never leaving and infant unattended on a changing table. Use window guards and keep furniture away from windows so a toddler won’t climb them and open the window. Keep doors to cellar, attics and porches locked at all times. Families with children learning to walk should use corner cushions on furniture with sharp corners. If they have slippery hard wood or tile floors use socks with friction pads on the bottoms so they don’t slip and fall or let them be barefoot. Always be looking for potential falling hazards in your home and child care center and be sure to use safety measures.

These five potentially hazardous situation and safety threats are some of the most common risks that could affect an infant or toddlers safety. If caregivers and parents are well-informed of these potential hazards and equipped with the safety measures to prevent and prepare for a safety emergency, the chance of injury to the infant or toddler becomes preventable and controllable.

References:

Robertson, C. (2013). Safety, nutrition, and health in early education (5th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.