Road Safety and Children

AuthorMuriel Pears
Published date01 October 1985
Date01 October 1985
Subject MatterArticle
(Mrs) Muriel Pears
Retired Teacher
Safety Officers, visiting schools, are popular men - and
rightly so. They teach their important messages with humour. Ithink
they can do more, by doing less: by re-thinking their approach to
school visits it should be possible, in addition to the road safety work,
to introduce even quite young children to the British system of
policing by consent. The process would be indirect, but no less
effective for that. This is how it could work.
Officers should give schools plenty of notice of a visit, indicate the
sort of material they will be bringing,
ask teachers to prepare
it in any of the following ways:
1) In art work, make big pictures of policemen, lollipop
holders or parents with very young children,
2) In drama, prepare short scenes with children behaving
well/ badly at the kerbs ide, or of young children, or dogs, being
3) Pairs, or groups, of children prepare question and answer
sessions on safety on bicycles or as pedestrians,
4) Making up of slogans, or jingles, to well known tunes. The
best of these, in the officers' judgment, might be copied,
circulated to other schools and incorporated into the officers'
Some children with whom I worked composed
"Use your eyes, use your ears,
Wait until the traffic clears."
went as far as the Minister of Transport but he was less impressed
delighted policemen.
When the officers arrive in school the children will have something
to offer them. They will be initiating the co-operation. They will be
working with adults who value their help - and isn't that the sort of
relationship which will ultimately benefit both public and police?
Children's self esteem flourishes when they can be seen to be truly
helping. Those who learn, early, that not only can the police help
them, but they can help the police, are likely to retain that
comfortable feeling of positive co-operation into adulthood.
Policing by consent is a term children may not meet for many years to
come. At five, they can be beginning to practise it.
October /985 303

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT