FAMILY FAMILY ACTIVITIES

Riding the City Bus to School

Written by Carmen Scott

September means back to school, and back to school means hundreds of kids will be taking city buses to and from school. Being ready to take public transit alone involves more than just safety procedures.

Ask yourself the question: does my child have the maturity to cope should something go wrong? If you answer yes to this question, here are a few helpful tips about riding the city bus to school.

Safety First:
Have your kids use a backpack and not a large bag or tote. Backpacks allow kids to be hands free, and by keeping both hands free, or at least one, this will make them less vulnerable.

Make sure all the zippers, snaps, Velcro, and pockets on the backpack are closed. You don’t want their phone or wallet to be in plain sight, and have them keep the change or bus pass in a pocket, and not at the bottom of the school bag.

Children need to be aware of their surroundings, so this means no reading, or texting; and talk with your children about feeling uncomfortable or uneasy and what they can do to reclaim their personal space. This can include changing seats, standing instead of sitting, or talking to the bus driver.

In Case Of An Emergency:
Make sure children have a cell phone in case something goes wrong, such as the bus does not show up, or they take the wrong bus. Also, make sure that your child has an extra bus ticket or bus fare in case they lose their bus pass/ticket.

Have your child arrive 5 – 7 minutes early to the bus stop to ensure that they don’t miss the bus, and make sure that your child uses the same designated bus stop coming and going.

Discuss with your child what happens if they miss the bus and have a plan B. Make sure they have a bus schedule and a charged cell phone. If they are unsure about something or have a question let them know that the bus driver is there to help.

The most important thing is that your child is confident and prepared when taking the city bus.

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About the author

Carmen Scott

Carmen Scott is the owner and co-founder of Burnt Toast Projects; builder of community resource websites. She specializes in family dynamics and parenting issues for the very young, and the young at heart. With degrees in Psychology and Art Therapy, plus 15 years in the corporate world combined with life experience as a mom, and now as a caregiver to both her parents. This makes Carmen an expert in this “sandwich generation” quest for simplicity, health, and well being, as well as the importance of staying connected with the greater community. Carmen was the “on-air” parenting expert for the duration of CHEK TV’s Island30 show with a segment called PG-Parental Guidance. Carmen is never far from her laptop; writing, blogging, web surfing and working on Burnt Toast Projects.