Gun Safety For Kids Is A Good Idea
Mar 07th 2018
Whether they live in a home of hunters, gun collectors, or see guns in media, teaching your kids about gun safety is important. While there is much talk on how to teach children about gun safety, communication and education are key for the kids and for you. This includes dispelling myths and/or ideas kids may have at any age about guns. Don't wait for kids to learn about gun safety from their friends — be proactive at all times.
Introduce Gun Safety To Kids Early
On average, 3 in 10 American adults currently own a gun. That means it’s more likely children will be around a gun at one point in their live and often at an early age. Many people are unsure of a good age to begin addressing firearms safety with kids. Children are naturally curious, and because guns can be portrayed in counterproductive ways, it's important to introduce gun safety in a way that is appropriate for their age and development. But keep in mind, what's appropriate for your child may not be appropriate for a friend of theirs or vice versa.
One of the best ways to teach your kids and others about the importance of gun safety is leading by example. Let them see you handling any firearm, whether cleaning it or using it during target practice, safely. Sometimes the most is said without any words at all. A gun safety course is a great follow-up and continuation to leading by example. Kids will see it’s not just you who believes in the tenants of gun safety at all times.
Gun training for kids covers a lot of information surrounding gun safety in different situations, including what they should do if they see an unattended gun. But a great way to reinforce what they've learned is by discussing it after the firearms training class ends on a regular basis.
Seeing A Gun In Public or At A Friend’s Home
We'd like to be with our kids as much as possible, but circumstances don't always allow. Having children understand the importance of gun safety early and often is the best way for them to stay safe if they encounter a gun in public or at a friend's home.
Don’t Touch The Gun
Kids as young as 3 years old have enough strength to pull the trigger on a gun. That’s why it’s vitally important to teach kids not to touch a gun regardless of where they find it.
Leave The Area
Knowing not to touch a gun may not be enough to protect your child. Other children and adults may not know or adhere to this safety lesson, so teach your children that they should leave the area of an unattended gun.
Tell An Adult
A common reason kids don't tell an adult about finding a gun is they don’t want to get in trouble. But if they find a firearm, especially in a public place, it’s important they tell you or another adult for the sake of everyone’s safety.
Finding a Firearm At Home
Practicing gun safety at home is one thing all responsible gun owners can do. If you are a gun collector, avid hunter, or enjoy target or skeet shooting, your children have probably seen your guns at the house. But, they should know that gun safety should be practiced everywhere — even at home where they are comfortable — at all times.
Keep Communication Open
Don’t be afraid to discuss firearms safety at home regularly. This includes when your child asks why the guns are stored in a safe or why you always clean a firearm after a hunting trip. Don’t be afraid to start the conversation before they do.
A Gun Can Be Touched But Only When Supervised
If you’re cleaning a firearm at home or getting gear together for hunting, take a minute or two to again go over why guns are only touched when supervised. Reinforce this by keeping the gun locked in a place that’s inaccessible to anyone but yourself.