This week, there was a sensational and heartbreaking burglary in New York; we learned the truly terrifying results of a CPSC safety study; the Wall Street Journal questioned whether our playgrounds are too safe; and we learned how to talk to teens and pre-teens about sexting. A little bit of this and a little bit of that, right? Because when it comes to your family’s safety, there really are many, many spokes of the wheel.
Won’t the Real Cat Burglar Please Stand Up?
A burglar with a truly hard heart stole 18 ceramic tigers from a Gramercy Park, NYC townhouse this week. The huge wildcats are part of the “Tiger Parade,” a fundraiser that hopes to foster awareness regarding the plight of the world’s wild tigers – an endangered species with only 3,200 individuals remaining in the world (compared to 100,000 tigers at the start of the 20th century). The most shocking thing about the robbery is that it happened in plain sight, during the day – neighbors watched and snapped photos of the robbery, oblivious to what was really going on. Talented artists had donated their time and talent to decorate the ceramic statues, which are valued at $50,000-$150,000+ each.
Your Child & Television Safety
Unfortunately, they’re not talking about the boob tube’s effects on your child’s emotional wellbeing; this time, it’s about children’s physical safety. A new CPSC report shows that one child dies every two weeks from a falling TV, appliance or other furniture. The age group at biggest risk is childen from 1-5, and 70% of deaths are attributed to falling television sets. Additionally, the same causes an startling 3 injuries per hour, 71 injuries per day, 2,117 injures per month, and 25,400 injuries per year. Do your family a favor and childproof all televisions, appliances, and balance-challenged furniture.
Are Playgrounds Too Safe?
Here’s an interesting item for your review: a recent article from the Wall Street Journal wonders if today’s playgrounds are too safe? According to the article, modern playgrounds are so safety-conscious that they eliminate all risk-taking, which in turn can actually feed phobias and anxiety. Comments Ellen Sandseter, an associate professor at Queen Maud University College of Early Childhood Education in Norway, “It’s important that play environments are as safe as necessary, not as safe as possible.”. Well said! Then, Jennifer of Parade Magazine chimed in with some great commentary on the WSJ article. After a brief trip down memory lane (I loved the metal merry-go-round, too!) Jennifer challenges playground manufacturers to step it up, linking us to some amazing and “safe enough” playgrounds around the world and at least 19 incredible outdoor play spaces in her native New York.
Let’s Talk About Sext, Baby
My son can’t even read, and yet I’m already cringing at the idea of of his sexting. The world today seems so very different from the one in which I grew up. Cell phones, Facebook, cyberbullying… the permanence of anything that ever happens online. I’m convinced our kids have it both easier and harder than we did. And if you have a tween or teen you think might be sexting – sending provocative photos via text (usually on their phones, but online too) – then you know it’s time for a chat. This week, Tim Woda of Keeping Kids Safe delivers some great advice on how to talk to kids about sexting. I love how he keeps it teen-current, like suggesting you weave a celebrity sexting scandal into the mix. If you want your teen to listen, it’s essential to approach such important topics in a non-threatening and relaxed manner.