Should safety be taught in school?

In elementary school we are taught the basics of math, history, language, science, music and other things. Even safety is modestly addressed, but in my opinion not near enough to ensure that everyone is on the same page, and to reinforce what is right even if a child’s parents are teaching them the wrong things. After all what good is it to teach a child about all sorts of things if they then go out, run across a street and get killed?

There should be a required intensive safety course for every child every year based on the knowledge that a particular age group,
from pre-K to 6th grade at a minimum, to give children the basics on how to take care of themselves and how to spot dangerous situations. The curriculum should be taught like any other subject, for one week a year and tested until each child knows everything they should know for that age. Every year the topics covered should be expanded to make them appropriate for the new age group.

Is this really necessary? We all know pretty much the statistics regarding deaths, and injuries, some of which are crippling, and compare those with things that are taking many more lives, is it really worth the trouble? I will never understand how that somehow justifies ignoring safety as a ‘concern’ and somehow we should all focus on the ‘worst things in life,’ but the truth is no one should ever die due to negligence with regards to safety. Why? Because if all people were behaving responsibly then there wouldn’t be any accidents, except perhaps due to mechanical malfunctions. As the world populations increase we will all be exposed to an ever increasing probability that we will have to witness some horrible accident resulting in serious injury or death, all which can be completely avoided. And that’s is truly the sad thing, that with care, we can all get to our destinations without the fear of an accident.

In the short term, the government could take the most serious offenders off the streets and put them through intensive training, but in the long term the only way to effectively deal with safety is to make it part of our academic system. It isn’t that hard to do, and doing so will not only help erase so much suffering, but also save countless billions in insurance claims and lost time.

Accidents are typically caused by at least one, if not more, people doing something risky, like double parking, passing on the wrong side of the road, jay walking, turning without using a signal, etc. With more empathy conditioning (concern for the other person), more training (repetitive responses built into our muscle memory), more understanding of social expectations (teaching of what is expected), everyone is capable of doing the right thing. Besides the practical results of less injuries and deaths, there certainly will be a savings in insurance payouts and premiums people pay, and the funny things is people will probably be able to get to their destinations faster and obviously with less stress.

Those who don’t learn about safety early have an increased probability of something happening to them as they get older. There is also an increased probability that they will affect someone else’s lives in a negative way.

And so Tommy has to wait a week before he learns what math is, but at least he has an increased chance to be here next week alive and well, to learn it, and a hugely proportional chance in the future to put it to use.

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Posted in General Knowledge, Parent Tips

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Welcome to Know The Fundamentals blog. Our mission is to find avenues for adults to teach children the fundamentals of safety, so they may have a lifetime free of tragic events. By instilling safe attitudes at a younger age, when they begin to drive, have families, or just live, they can pass on their knowledge through their example.

As an adult city dweller, you know that you have to keep alert to navigate the city safely. With years of experience on how to judge distance and speed, you're probably very good at it. Now imagine a child, who has little to no experience walking around our busy streets. Sounds dangerous, doesn't it? Take the time to teach them well, and if you're not a parent and don't have children, set a good example to those you see. Your example will probably save someone's life, at some point in their life.

Sidewalks, curbs, crosswalks, bicycles, vehicles, seniors, adults, parents and children, all interacting in real time. But children do not know the rules, so take the time to teach them well, and in the process enhance the quality of your relationship by engaging them through open communication about all sorts of topics. Know, and teach, the fundamentals. The challenge is yours, and that of a healthy community.

Teach your children the basics of safety and life, to give them the foundation for a positive, healthy and safe future. You love them, right? They deserve it, correct?

By teaching your child the basics of safety, you'll find that they will interact with others in a more considerate way. This will in turn help them become successful adults. With children lies the opportunity to help them with their foundation of knowledge. If you wait too long, the consequences may be too much to bear.
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