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Skills Your Child Should Know but Isn’t Taught at School

I am not a fan of specialised programs as they tend to clog the school day and leave too few hours for covering the curriculum. Programs such as “Stranger Danger” have been shown in studies to be ineffective and a cause of paranoia and anxiety among students rather than a useful resource for their protection.

An exception to this rule is training children to be safe around pets. As a father of a young girl who is absolutely petrified of dogs of all shapes and sizes, I am concerned that this fear will prevent her from enjoying animals. I am also aware that dog attacks happen on an all too regular basis, with many of these incidents involving children and proving deadly.

Adults may know that running away from an angry or vicious dog is a recipe for disaster, but do children know that? And if they do, do they have the tools to manage such a situation?

The answer to that question is invariably – no!

That’s why I am grateful to prominent veterinarian, author and blogger, Dr. Vadim Chelom, whose passio for this issue prompted him to release a program for teachers to integrate into their literacy/social studies curriculum free of charge. On his blog is a comprehensive lesson by lesson program which will enable teachers to educate their students about how to stay safe around pets.

I have no doubt that this program has the potential to save lives. I certainly encourage parents to share the information with their children and for teachers to find time in a crowded curriculum to at least dedicating a lesson to this very important issue.

What to do When Threatened by an Angry Dog according to Dr. Chelom:

  • Lie down face on the ground.
  • Pull your legs up to your stomach.
  • Bring your hands close to the body to cover your face with your arms and your chest with your elbows.
  • Don’t move and don’t shout.
  • Lie still until the dog is gone.
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