The sun sets later and later, spring is back, it is the final countdown before summer holidays and your children have grown a lot throughout the school year… To sum up, now is the perfect time to give them more autonomy and let them go about on their own!
First trips alone: the right conditions
Of course, it gets safer as days get longer; in springtime, weather conditions are also an invitation to relax… But not be careless! There are certain conditions to fill before granting your children full autonomy.
- Your children’s age and personality
When the journey is easy and safe, you can let your children walk the way to school before the age of 10. However, more than their age, what matters is their maturity. If the journey to school is safe, without crossroads, or maybe with a secure pedestrian path, and that your child is reasonable and aware, you can consider letting him/her walk alone a little earlier: around 9 for the most serious children! For those with their heads in the clouds, they’ll have to wait a little longer…
- The nature of the journey
The way from home to school is the most frequent. If the school is within walkable distance, and that there are no roads to cross, it’ll be easy to let your child go on his/her own. But if there are intersections along the way, it may be more complicated: ideally, there is a traffic light, and an officer helping kids cross the road. It makes the trip safer and teaches your children to follow certain road rules. Without these safety criteria, we don’t advise for an alone child to cross a road before 10 or 11 years old: they are simply not tall enough to be seen!
First trips on their own: what are the rules?
Walk with your children to school, just like every day; and make a deal: you’re going to let them
finish the journey on their own, first of all, after you have passed all crossroads. Step by step, leave them earlier on the way, until they walk the whole way alone.
Objective: be independent before the end of the school year!
For the way back, you don’t have many options: it’ll be difficult to apply the same strategy as you do with the way to school. Encourage your children to join other kids from your neighborhood: walkink together is safer! First, make sure that your children’s school allows them to go home alone at their age.
Finally, offer to get your children a Weenect Kids GPS tracker: it’ll help you follow the path they take.
You’ll be able to give them more autonomy when you observe that they are mature enough.
Enjoy the first days of spring to give more autonomy to your kids! They’re often eager to be more independent, especially the younger kids. Let them enjoy walking to school on their own, it is often the first step towards autonomy…