Installing a security system is one of the best ways to ensure a great level of safety for your family. As your children age and become capable of staying home by themselves, they’ll need to learn how to operate your security system at some point in the future. This is very important as not only do you want your kids to be safe, but you also want to teach them how to handle themselves during an emergency.
In this article, we’ll be discussing a couple of tips that you can use to teach your children about security systems.
Tackle the conversation with a positive attitude and a balanced mindset
As a parent, it can be challenging to talk to your kids about home security without sounding too straightforward. Keep in mind that children process information differently than adults and the last thing you want is to instill fear into them while trying to teach something.
What you can do is approach the conversation lightheartedly and focus on what their roles would be in maintaining your home security. Make sure that your kids are familiar with the components of the security system such as the control panel, the cameras, sensors, and other devices. Explain to them how each component works and how it can help keep your home a safe place.
By doing this, your children will have a better understanding of security systems in general. Additionally, you want to teach them how to operate the control panel so they know how to activate the alarm or call for help should an emergency situation arise.
Role play with your kids and teach them about various emergency situations
Instead of emphasizing horrible scenarios that could happen to them due to lack of security, you can role play with your kids to make them aware of the different emergency situations. Stage various safety drills (i.e. fires and break-ins) and guide them through the entire process so they know what to do. Make sure they know the proper entrance and exit procedures no matter where they are in the house.
You can also throw in a couple of “what if” scenarios to help improve your children’s critical thinking skills. Ask them what their response would be if X happens and how they can better prepare for it. Practicing important safety precautions will help make your kids feel more confident in operating the security system and reduce their chances of panicking during an emergency.
Keep your kids involved and provide them with as much instructions as possible
You don’t have to explain everything to your children on how security systems work. Frankly, it’s much better to demonstrate the operation of the components while providing them with detailed instructions along the way. For example, you can show them how to input the passcode or how to reset it. You can also show them how to activate and deactivate the alarm. This gives your kids the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the security system and instill confidence in operating the components.
Remind them to always keep the doors and windows locked
While it’s great that your kids are learning about security systems, it’s important to emphasise the basics of home security and that is keeping the doors and windows locked at all times. Tell the kids to never leave the house in a hurry and make sure to double-check all the doors and windows.
If your children have keys to your house, remind them to never leave the keys in an open space and always keep them out of sight. Alternatively, you can choose a trusted neighbour as a keyholder where your children can get the keys once they get home. This is much safer compared to having them physically carrying the keys while they’re out and about.
Specify what’s off-limits
Kids are born inquisitive and their curiosity can sometimes lead to pressed buttons and activated alarms. As they learn more about security systems, specify what objects are off-limits. You can teach them how to input the passcode, but tell them to not fiddle around with the settings or press any buttons they’re not supposed to press.
Most security systems today come with smartphone applications for remote access and instant notifications. Make sure your children know how to navigate the app and operate certain features before giving them access.