1. Rehearse common ways that strangers approach children
The best way to help children understand “stranger danger” is to rehearse situations with them and explain the best way to react. Tell them to never follow a stranger who says he wants to give them money/candy, bring them somewhere else or needs help with something.
Remind your child that it’s all right to say ‘No’ to a stranger, even if it may seem rude to do so, because a stranger should ask another adult for help if he really needs it. The most important thing to teach children is to never get into a stranger’s car without your direct consent, even if the person knows your full name or where you work.
2. Teach them ways to draw attention
Tell your kids that it’s all right to scream, kick or punch if a stranger tries to drag or carry them to into a car or building without their consent. Even though they probably won’t be strong enough to overpower their abductor, this scene will definitely draw attention from helpful bystanders.
3. Have a safe word for trustable adults in their life
Many parents have taken to using a ‘safe’ word to help children set apart adults that are truly close family friends, from those who merely claim to be. Make sure the word is easy to remember and tell your child that he is not supposed to tell anyone else the safe word.
It works as sort of a password for children to find out if the adult is to be trusted. For example, if you need a friend to pick your child up from school for any reason, your child should ask your friend for the ‘safe word’ before leaving with them.