Halloween is many children’s favourite holiday – from doing entertaining activities at school, to carving pumpkins in the afternoon, to an evening spent getting dressed up and trick or treating, there are very few children who don’t revel in the creepy fun of the day.
However, with all this fun come safety concerns from parents. Many of us love the spirit of Halloween, but worry that if we allow our little ones out of our sight they’ll come to some sort of harm. Here are ten ways to keep your kids safe on Halloween, that won’t compromise on their experience.
- Hold a Halloween party in your home. Forgoing trick or treating in place of a Halloween party for the kids can actually give them a better experience, and you get to keep an eye on them. Just get your children to invite their friends, stock up on the Halloween decorations and make some yummy party food. Stick on a Halloween playlist and you’re good to go!
- Organise a trick or treating group. If your child is begging to be allowed out on Halloween alone and you’re not happy with that, try to organise for them to go in a group of friends chaperoned by at least one adult. It’ll keep them happy, and save your peace of mind.
- Make sure your kid’s costume is street-savvy. Even if you’re going out trick or treating with your little ones, make sure they can move easily in their costume and have good peripheral vision in case they get separated from your group. Older children should have a pocket for their mobile phones.
- Map out a trick or treating route and give them a curfew. If you’re not with your child when they go trick or treating, make sure you’ve planned the exact route they’ll take. From this work out around what time they’ll be home, as well as giving them a curfew that they have to be back home by.
- Make sure children know to only approach well-lit houses. Some families don’t celebrate Halloween, so make sure not to bother anyone who is clearly not a Halloween fan. Dark houses, and houses far back from main roads can also pose safety hazards, so avoid these.
- Check over any candy that hasn’t come from home. Feed your kids a healthy, filling meal before they go out, and give them strict instructions not to eat any before they get home. There have been many scares about candy that has been tampered with, so make sure to throw out any unwrapped treats, and anything in wrappers that aren’t intact.
- Teach kids to be car aware. Make sure all children know and abide by the basic rules of crossing the road, and if your little one is going out with an older sibling, they always take their hand before crossing. If they’ll be out after dark, sew reflective strips or stick reflective stickers for kids on both the front and back of their costume so they’re better seen by drivers.
- Make sure children know never to enter homes without an adult with them. If your kids are out alone, make sure they know they are not allowed to enter anyone’s house without your permission – even if they know them. If you or another adult is with them, make sure they go into the house as well to minimise accidents.
- Make sure to keep any jack o’lanterns away from doorways, steps, curtains and walkways. Not only can they be a tripping hazard, but they are also lit objects. Try to keep all jack o’lanterns and candles away from little hands as well, on a raised surface.
- Make sure they know to walk, not run. Running in long costumes, or just even when there are a lot of other people around can result in trips and falls, which can ruin the night. Make sure kids also know to stick to pavements, and never to go along a route that involves walking on the road.
Louise Blake is a mum of one who loves Halloween, but likes to make sure everyone is safe. She currently writes for School Stickers.