With the recent creepy clown threats and sightings nationwide, how should parents reassure their children (and themselves) that they’ll be safe trick-or-treating on Halloween? Some people are actually choosing creepy clown masks or suits as their costume of choice for the holiday because of all the social media attention.
▪ Younger kids are most likely unaware of the phenomenon, and so if they don’t bring it up, don’t introduce anxiety to their celebration.
▪ For middle school or older kids who know about it and are scared, ask them what they are worried about and talk about it. Tell them you’ll likely not encounter a scary clown. Talk with them about what to expect so they know how to react. Advise them that it’s always more fun to trick-or-treat in groups.
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Manage that candy intake
In addition to the health impact of candy consumption, teaching children to self-regulate and understanding the importance of moderation can have long-lasting benefits.
Here are a few ideas:
▪ One piece of candy a day.
▪ Have them choose 20 of their favorite pieces and donate the rest to the office candy bowl.
▪ Check out your dentist — many have programs where they buy back candy.
▪ Implement your own backpack program — 25 cents, 50 cents for every piece.
▪ Ask your child how many pieces of candy would be acceptable to eat on Halloween night.
▪ Put half your child’s stash in the freezer and bring it out over the Christmas holidays.
▪ Institute a “daddy tax” or “mommy tax” of 20 percent: kids give a parent 1 out of every 5 pieces.