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Teaching children about reasonable risk is the new approach to safety, as one expert flips the script on the traditional phrase “be careful!” According to the expert, constantly telling children to be careful without providing context or consequences creates a fear-based environment, which can lead to desensitization.

Instead, parents should point out the consequences of certain behaviors and provide options for safe alternatives.

For example, instead of saying “be careful with that stick, you’ll hurt someone,” say “you need space to swing your stick safely.” The new approach encourages autonomy and teaches children about cause and effect.

However, the expert emphasizes that safety is still important, and children should not be allowed to take unreasonable risks.

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