Is my child old enough to be left at home alone?
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Leaving your child home alone to run a quick errand or even after school for a couple of hours before you get home is often more cost effective and practical than attempting to find childcare. With rules and appropriate age, it should be more than fine to let your child stay home alone for a short time, and can become a regular arrangement. Here are some great tips from a boy’s school in Chesham on if your child is old enough to be left home alone.
It is not usually recommended to leave a child below the age of 10 home alone, however the age that each child is ready varies from person to person. With the list of safety concerns being lengthy, many parents would argue it’s best to never leave a child home alone. However, if your child has reached an age where you can trust them to safe and you have no choice but to leave them on their own for certain periods of time, there are certain things to consider beforehand. The age and maturity of your child will always play the biggest role but safety concerns may have a bigger impact on the decision made to leave a child home alone.
- Consider the time of the day that your child will be left alone and the kind of neighbourhood you live in.
- Do you have neighbours you can ask to keep an eye on who comes to the house or is the area safe from most common crime?
- Is your child able to make something easy to eat without using appliances that could be hazardous?
- Do they know how to use the phone and where to find contacts for family and emergency services?
- Are they aware of how to close and lock windows and doors?
- Do they know how to take care of any small accidents like a scrape on their finger?
These are all questions you must ask yourself and your child before even considering leaving them alone. If you do end up leaving them alone, start with short amounts of time and gradually extend it. Best of luck!