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Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

  • 1.  Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    Here's the deal...I have no formal early childhood training and so I have been attending NAEYC conferences, devouring NAEYC's publications, learning from our local educators in order to be better in my role as a public librarian.  So please, be gentle with me if I am asking a stupid question!
    But at what age should a child be able to tell someone his/her/their parent's or caregiver's phone number for safety reasons? (The child gets separated from their super special grownup in a mall, etc.?)
    I know that rote learning isn't a good thing when it comes to calendar time, learning the days of the week, months, that kind of thing.  And I want to be developmentally appropriately minded when I respond to this question, so please any advice you can give would be most appreciated!
    Thank you!
    Ing Kalchthaler
    Pittsburgh, PA

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    Rev. Ingrid Kalchthaler
    Head of Youth Services
    Shaler North Hills Library
    Glenshaw PA
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  • 2.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    First, there is no question that is considered stupid. Questions are asked because someone needs information on a thought or idea. Secondly, What safety risk was this child in? Third, if I found a child that is separated from families or caregivers, I would not asked that child for a phone number because that child is terrified or scared of being separated from others especially family. My first response would to call the police and allow them to do their job of seeking out the families. I do not think it is ethically for me to question a child about their family and personal information. I could be wrong and others may reason otherwise but, I would call the authority, keep the child safe until they get there and then allow them to do their job.

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    Florence Britton
    Teacher Assistant
    Gilmore Memorial Preschool
    Paterson NJ
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  • 3.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    On no this is just a general question!  Like as far as developmentally appropriate teaching.  When should a child know their phone number so that if they do ever get lost or something they could tell the police, say.  That was all I was asking.  A mom came in with a coloring page she found online from her local police department and she was really upset that her 18 month old couldn't remember their number- she was trying so hard to get her to learn it and I was trying to explain about how her little one might not just be really to learn this.  We had a good talk, the mom is a first time mom, child not in day care so she couldn't ask a teacher for advice.but it did make me wonder how could should a child be able to do this and at what age should they know this and other emergency info.
    I am so sorry for not being more clear!  But thank you so much for responding!  Does that make sense?  Just a guideline!

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    Rev. Ingrid Kalchthaler
    Head of Youth Services
    Shaler North Hills Library
    Glenshaw PA
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  • 4.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    Ok. My grandson is 4 and he knows his parents information and address in case of any emergency. I think there is no set time once a child can comprehend there is no limit to knowledge. Just teach them who should NOT have those information.

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    Florence Britton
    Teacher Assistant
    Gilmore Memorial Preschool
    Paterson NJ
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  • 5.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    Cool cool!  Yes!  4 is a lot better than 18 months!  I see so many moms worrying about their child's inability to read at age 3, do math at 4.  So much pressure.  I think when they a part of a day care or preschool where they can hear about developmentally appropriate learning that helps, and also if they have older kids, of course because they have seen it first hand, but first time parents have so many worries.  I always encourage them to talk to their pediatrician about their concerns but it really helps for us in the public library to know the basics.  Sometimes we are seen as less intimidating than the doctor- we are just the sweet men and women who sing songs and share stories with their kids at programs.  That is why I love NAEYC- we can be informed and then know where to point parents!  Thank you!!

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    Rev. Ingrid Kalchthaler
    Head of Youth Services
    Shaler North Hills Library
    Glenshaw PA
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  • 6.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    Rev. Kalchthaler,

    In my position, I screen and evaluate children to determine eligibility for Pre-K evaluations.  On the Four-Year old screening tool (which is a standardized tool) one of the questions is "What is your address?" Acceptable answer - Street Name and Numerical and "What is your parent's (Guardian/grandparent, etc) phone number?"  The acceptable answer is an appropriate phone number.

    We encourage our Pre-K teachers to start building in Personal Information lessons at age four to include those answers.  We send home an info sheet to the families that explains what we want to introduce to the students.  The info sheet includes the address the parents are going to teach their children along with one phone number and who it belongs to that the parent wants the child to learn.  We pair this with other information including Full name; gender; and birthdate (month and day),.  We encourage the parents to help us with teaching this valuable information to their students.

    Our goal is that our "typically developing" four-year-olds will transition to Kindergarten with most of this information.

    I hope this is helpful.


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    Lisa Tavary
    Program Specialist
    SJCSD Early Childhood Services
    St. Augustine FL
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  • 7.  RE: Teaching a child his/her/their phone number?

    Posted 28 days ago
    Yes yes! So helpful!  Thank you!

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    Rev. Ingrid Kalchthaler
    Head of Youth Services
    Shaler North Hills Library
    Glenshaw PA
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