Preparing for emergencies shouldn't fall on your shoulders alone. Young children and teens alike need to be part of the process — for their own safety and sense of empowerment.
- Work together to build an emergency kit.
- Include some of your child's stuffed animals, board games and books.
- Sit down as a family to talk about your communications plan.
- Teach children phone skills so they know how to text you and dial 9-1-1. Make sure they know who they should contact in the event of an emergency.
- Role-play what you would do during a disaster.
- Practice making calls/texting and showing kids what to do if they are away from home or school during an emergency.
- Hold fire drills in your house.
- Practice home escape drills with the entire family at least twice a year.
In addition, ask your child's teacher about the plans the school has in place for emergencies. Find out where you would pick your child up in the event of a disaster and/or evacuation. Disasters don't plan ahead, but you can.