How To Teach Your Kid To Be Wary Of Strangers Without Freaking Them Out

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While the basics of what kids need to be wary of when it comes to strangers — anyone who tries to take them someplace, or get them in a car or feed them — are easy to explain, you don’t want your kids terrified of the whole world. There are a few ways experts recommend introducing these concepts, as well as plans of action like running away and finding a cop: There are books, like The Berenstein Bears Learn About Strangers, which filter the information through familiar characters, and police departments often provide materials like coloring books and quizzes to families as well. Role playing scenarios in a playgroup is a way to talk about the scary stuff while empowering them to act at the same time — but you might have to sacrifice your shins to teach them what to do if someone tries to grab them.

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