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Thread: Keeping Kids safe at moots etc

  1. #1

    Default Keeping Kids safe at moots etc

    Just wondered if anyone takes their Toddlers to Moots and how do you keep them out of trouble? Want to go to the moot this year but our little one (she'll be two then) is a proper handfull and into EVERYTHING! Worried about her and fires mainly. She knows what a fire is and seen one in fireplace and Hobo stove but not an open fire outside yet.

    Sure some have taken toddlers without incident so any tips would be great..
    A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees. - William Blake

  2. #2

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    its all about the bushcraft


  3. #3

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    no flammable materials for clothing, keep hair tied back, try to keep gloves on her at all times so if she decides to touch anything hot or sharp, there is a little protection.

    also some lessons in learning to use a knife, so if she picks one up she is less likely to cause injury,

    to take it a step further, substuting a typical kids plastic knife with a very blunt steak knife or bushcraft knife at meal times for a few weeks before the moot may stop the urge to pick one up at the moot, maybe a bit too drastic but from experience, children do dangerous things out of curiosity of new things
    There are some things rope cant tie, for everything else, there's paracord

  4. #4
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    I think reins would be the only safe option at that age. You could pimp them up with a retractable dog lead to give your toddler more freedom.

  5. #5

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    just give them a long stick to poke the fire and they'll be fine

  6. #6
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    "just give them a long stick to poke the fire and they'll be fine "

    Not at my fire they won't Kids waving smouldering sticks around will get told off, and any parent who complains will be asked bluntly, "Where were you ? "

    Generally the kids at the meet ups and the Moot have been incredibly well behaved, and they are aged from literally a fortnight old, to teenagers.

    Basically, your child is your responsibility.
    It's a family friendly site with a lot of people there. It's expected that fires aren't to be played with, other people's tools are not to be touched, and that other folks tents, tarps, hammocks and kit are not disturbed.

    That's it really
    What a child does at their family camp area and fire is up to the parents.

    If your toddler really is a handful, then yes, I too would suggest attentive parents and reins

    I'm presuming here, but on the balance of experience I'm pretty sure I'm right, that you have childproofed your home. Folks come to the Moot to relax, learn, teach, enjoy the woods and the seashore, chill out in like minded company; and they don't childproof their lives.

    We do leave tools lying at hand, we do leave camping equipment sitting around the fires, we do leave our tents and hammocks unattended when we're elsewhere on site.

    I'm not trying to be offputting, many parents bring very young children along and have a brilliant time but the onus is on the parents to keep them safe, not on other folks to make the site safe for the children.
    Kids aren't stupid though, they learn good practice very quickly
    Courtesy starts young no reason you and your child shouldn't have a great time on site too

    cheers,
    Toddy
    I'm not sure if life is passing me by, or trying to run me over !

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  7. #7

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    i would tell em to stay away from the moany old ladies fire!

    i've never been to one of your meets but ive taken my kids camping a lot and ive never had a problem other than them refusing to go to sleep!

  8. #8
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    We took our little ones to the Comrie Meet last November.

    They were 3.5 and 14 months then. Both kids had an absolue ball. We stayed in the Kata with the woodburning stove on and although they arent used to open fires or stoves neither touched them. I was very impressed with them

    Although there were sharps lying around, neither child went near those either.

    The only drawback taking them was that one of us had to always keep a close eye on them. It wont be possible for both parents to attend courses etc at the same time at the moot.

    We are planning to take our two to the moot this year too and dont think there will be any problems. I think Toddy has summed it up well. Aslong as one of you is keeping a close eye on your wee one, you should be able to enjoy your time there too. Keeping her entertained is the key to success

    There's our two anklebiters keeping busy at Crombie



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    Ness
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 789987 View Post
    i would tell em to stay away from the moany old ladies fire!

    i've never been to one of your meets but ive taken my kids camping a lot and ive never had a problem other than them refusing to go to sleep!
    That kind of attitude to a reasonable and sensible answer will win you no favours at any meet. As has already been said your kids are your responsibility, and it is you who will be looking after them. I can assure you if any child starts prodding at anybody else's fire they will be told off immediately and if it were mine the parents would be asked why their child is roaming about out of control. We are not disciplinarians by any stretch and we have few rules but the ones we do have are their for the protection and safety of all. Also plain good manners are expected from those who attend and everyone is treated as an adult and expected to act like one (excluding kids of course). We have had many children of all ages attend meets and have never had a problem as the rules are generally kept to, and the good manners eluded to have been shown. Nobody is against kids going provided the parents look after them. I'm sure you will look after your family responibly and your little one will be adored by all and there will be no problems.
    It's hard to soar like an eagle
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  10. #10

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    who said the kids were touching anybody else's precious fire?

    all i said was give em a long stick and they'll be happy! in my experience if there water to throw stones in or a fire to poke and kids keep themselves entertained. again its obviously their parents responsibility to look after them - this wasnt ever in question until you rolled out your preconceived notions

  11. #11
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    We've not been to any meets from this forum but have taken our kids to festivals and camps and camping in general since they were babes in arms. We've always found it really easy to deal with.
    We just treated it the same as going to a non child friendly elderly relatives house with lots of breakables in reach ie. LOTS of supervision. That said we have never let them touch things that don't belong to them anyway. My wife would go mad if they were going through HER handbag let alone someone else's so they soon learnt, and touching a strangers things in or out of their tent hasn't been a concern for a long, long time.
    With regards fires a lot of camps we go to have permanently burning communal fires with axes and saws at hand and we explained in terms they can understand why they shouldn't touch things and the danger involved rather than a blanket ban with no explanation of why. I think if you explain your reasons kids are much more likely to listen and do as they are asked. It helped in some ways that one of them touched the iron when it was not quite cool when they were young (not hot enough to cause a burn but enough to feel what hot was) so if we say it is hot and could burn you they have some comprehension of what that means. I wouldn't recommend this as a method of intentionally teaching them I hasten to add!!!!
    That said with due care they can get a lot out of it and it doesn't need to be that stressful if you think it through. As v-ness says keeping them occupied is the key to success. If they are fully immersed in something you want them to be doing they are less likely to try to find mischief to get up to.
    ....Life is more than the money that you earn.....
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by R.Lewis View Post
    any tips would be great..
    Train it to behave. If that doesn't work, keep a hold of it at all times. If neither are possible, leave it at home.

    No idea if this will work with toddlers, but it does the trick with gundogs.

  13. #13
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    V-ness your children were a delight to have around No bother and exactly the kind of behaviour that made the meet up relaxing for everyone

    789987, As for me moaning .....oh you are so right Why should other people become your de facto babysitters ? Why should every one else be responsible for your child's safety ?
    Better that I state the acceptable behaviour clearly, rather than have every one else irritated and out of sorts.

    I like people, I really do, and that includes children, I happily spend time with them, teach and enjoy their company; and from your response I firmly suspect that this 'old lady' will be young at heart long after you've hit grumpy old codgerdom

    cheers,
    Toddy
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  14. #14

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    please refer to post 10

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    We have two children, 2 and 4. We find that as long as they are well taught, occupied and happy then they get along fine wherever we take them. We are not in to 'childproofing' anything. It serves us and them well as they learn what is acceptable and what is not. They are loads of teaching opportunities.
    Last edited by exarkun; 28-02-2011 at 11:51.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by 789987 View Post
    please refer to post 10
    Please refer to post 9

    M
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  17. #17
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    A child + long stick + fire = child with long stick with burning ember at the end. Burning ember + excited running child = tent with burn hole or another child with a burn or ...or... simple. You were the person who condones children, sticks, and fires. No one has suggested you would not look after your child, I'm sure you will, but the notion of letting a toddler play with sticks around a fire is not the suggested way to make friends and influence people at a meet. There is a thread on here about campfire ettiquette but I just can't find it at the moment, it would be worth a look. This is about what the rules are for everyone around the fire the do's and don'ts well worth a look. We just want everyone to enjoy their time.
    Last edited by Sniper; 27-02-2011 at 22:59.
    It's hard to soar like an eagle
    When your surrounded by turkeys!!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by exarkun View Post
    We have two children, 2 and 4. We find that as long as they are well taught, occupied and happy then they get along fine wherever we take them. We are not in to 'childproofing' anything. It serves us and them well as they learn what is acceptable and what is not. They are loads of teaching opportunities.
    That's responsible parenting
    With the best will in the world there are somethings that adults, without young children of their own around, will do that they wouldn't bother about, even if they did when their own children were small. Simple things, like keeping bleach and cleaning stuffs out of the way, turning pot handles well out of a child's reach.....sometimes that's not so easy on a campfire, when to do so means the handles are over the heat too....that kind of thing.
    Most folks do childproof to some extent, even if it is just the bleachy stuffs, but yes, I do agree, children learn very quickly what is and is not acceptable behaviour

    cheers,
    Toddy
    I'm not sure if life is passing me by, or trying to run me over !

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  19. #19
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    I find a nice tree, a loose child and gaffa tape will work to stop them being a pain.....

    Simple rules, you bring them, you look after them, and take responability for all there actions. They has not been any real problems with kids at the moot, but a few have had words spoken to them as and when needed.

  20. #20

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    There's a sign in our local coffee shop that says: Unattended Children Will Be Given a Double Espresso and a Free Puppy...

  21. #21
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    some of us dont like kids and have to be Unusualy Tolerant to come to the Moot (where there is more kids than mozzies)

  22. #22
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    We're out in the woods building camps, lighting fires and kneeling in awe of shiney sharp things. Who's the kid?

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    Quote Originally Posted by silentpaddler View Post
    There's a sign in our local coffee shop that says: Unattended Children Will Be Given a Double Espresso and a Free Puppy...
    Brilliant..

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tengu View Post
    some of us dont like kids and have to be Unusualy Tolerant to come to the Moot (where there is more kids than mozzies)
    And it's just great watching how very well you cope with all those pesky kids Tengu, this year I'm sending mine to stay with you for the week so make sure you bring your extra tolerance pills and take them regularly

    as for the OP, It's already been pointed out that the parents are responsible, for the most part this works very well and we've never really had an issue at the Moot, part of that though is that those attending accept that if they're not with their kids some other adult may well tell them to stop playing with fire (if it's getting dangerous or it's inappropriate) or to stop throwing things, making spiky sticks etc etc and the parents accept this.

    For the most part (Tengu excluded, well, Womble lancs, Spikey and a number of others as well that struggle in the mornings because they don't go to bed until just before the children wake up ) are very patient with the young ones and the parents of young ones, it's usually if the parents don't seem to care where the kids are there's an issue.

    If you have young kids that you need to be with all the time to be able to make sure that they're not getting into trouble or doing something dangerous you're still welcome at the Moot, you'll just need to be with your child. Often parents swap off with one looking after children and the other doing workshops etc. It's a great environment to be able to teach the young ones as well and most people are more than happy to share knowledge with children when asked. It's also a great opportunity to teach them camp etiquette, how to act in someone else's space, don't touch tools etc, don't run through others camping areas etc etc but also for them to get to know that they can approach people and talk to them, ask how to do something etc

    For some it's not that relaxing, it's a different environment but just as hard work as at home or anywhere else but it can be a great opportunity for the whole family.

    At the Moot there's plenty of opportunity to organise activities as well, getting the parents and children together to make things, go for walks etc
    Tone
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  25. #25
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    In general kids dont cause any problems at the moots and people are happy to have them around, just keep an eye on them, you do occasionally get a child popping up in the naughty corner at night at their own but they soon get put on the BBQ.
    Matt

    "Light a man a fire and he is warm for a few hours, Set a man on fire and he is warm for the rest of his life" :-D

  26. #26
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    I've just replied to a pm on this topic....this is the gist of what I said.

    Re: Moot and kids, a good idea?

    Hello
    The site is massive. It's on sandy soil and even when it pours the ground dries quickly
    There are some things organised for families and children, the beach is a fair walk, but it's in deep sand on the way, and you can just stop and let the kids play.
    Usually they make friends easily with similar ages, and their parents, and the week just disappears.
    I'd take spare small tarps or cloth, and paracord or similar, and make play areas for them, tents, tepees, that kind of thing, and if you take a couple of small spades or trowels along, the kids can dig to their hearts content even if there's nothing else happening for a bit, but Mum and Dad need a sit down and a quiet blether

    Bushcraft has it's own protocols, good manners kind of thing, about not asking to use someone else's axe, don't pick up someone else's knife, don't hand a knife back point first......a lot of folks take it ill out and start talking about moaning and nazis when someone explains. It's neither moaning or nazi like, it's simple explantion that keeps everyone happy.

    It's the same kind of thing with children.
    The fact that you've asked me is the surest certainty that your children aren't going to be a problem for anyone
    Basically please see that they don't touch anyone else's tools or guylines/hammock/tentage, and that they know not to go near someone else's fire, and that's it really
    Oh, and the primary rule for little ones, enjoy being in the woods with their parents

    Genuinely, the Moot is a family friendly event, Tony has young children of his own along, and the baby was literally a baby last time, and they are all brilliant to have around
    There are usually craft workshops for children, Shelley and Lorraine do others, and the slightly older children are welcome to learn to do things like the firebow. Adult workshops usually have a couple of kids tagging along with a parent. Capt'n Badger does a brilliant treasure hunt/ all over the site adventure for the children too

    There are a lot of individuals come along as well though, and they don't want to be fussing over whether or not they can leave their axe next to the woodpile, just incase a child comes by and picks it up. They don't want to have to put their fire out when the soup's slowly simmering when they go to the showers.....they shouldn't have to. Children and other adults ought to know better than touch someone else's kit or fire. It's just simple courtesy really

    Does this help ? It really is a brilliant week for everyone and I'd hate to discourage you in the least.

    cheers,
    Mary
    Last edited by Toddy; 28-02-2011 at 12:47. Reason: punctuation :blush:
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  27. #27
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    I think you ought to make that a sticky in the Moot section Mary.

    It covers just about everything folks need to know with regards to brining kids

  28. #28
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    Thats really reasured me that bring my kids to the moot will be ok.

    Thank you.
    resnikov

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  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Toddy View Post
    "...Generally the kids at the meet ups and the Moot have been incredibly well behaved..."
    That has certainly been my experience, however I do recall one occasion at a Scottish meet where I was asked by two young un's if I would take them out on my canoe, "not right now" I replied. They decided to take it out themselves anyway and were only noticed when they were about 150 m out, fighting against a headwind to get back and wearing no PFD's!
    “…my shoes are the hard soles of my feet, my bed is the earth, my food is only seasoned by hunger…”

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  30. #30
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    That's when I start asking parents, "and where were you ? ! "

    cheers,
    M
    I'm not sure if life is passing me by, or trying to run me over !

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