Summer is upon us, and that means kids can finally enjoy a variety of outdoor activities. From playgrounds to swimming to biking, it’s the time of year that children can be more active and soak up the sun. But as with most activities, these summertime endeavors come with some risks that parents should be aware of.

Keep reading to learn about practical tips for parents to keep kids safe while playing outside this summer.

Sun Protection

The most common protection that kids will need every day this summer is sunscreen. Even if it’s overcast, anyone spending time outside should lather up. Sunburns are no joke and can lead to anything from a slight burning sensation or blistering, all the way to skin cancer. When choosing the best SPF for kids, consider using at least SPF 30, and ideally 50 or 50+ during peak sun hours. Sunscreen needs at least 15 min to soak in before it’s effective, so apply it in the house or car before heading out.

Clothing can also be used to protect your child’s body from the sun. Hats, sunglasses, and long sleeves can go a long way in reducing sun exposure. Select lightweight, breathable fabrics for nice airflow and movability. At night, the sunscreen can be swapped for insect repellent. A summer full of itchy bug bites will not be fun for your kid. In some cases, bug bites can cause allergic reactions or infections.

Hydration is also incredibly important during the summer months. To encourage your kids to drink plenty of water, let them pick out a fun water bottle or straw to use for the summer. If you ever notice your child looking fatigued or they mention feeling dizzy, it could be a sign of dehydration. If this happens, have them sit down in the shade and rest while they drink up.

Road Safety

Most kids know to look both ways before they cross a street, but this rule cannot be overstated. Crosswalks and traffic signals should always be followed, no matter what. If kids are walking someplace alone, like to a friend’s house or to get ice cream, safety rules need to be ingrained in them. For example just because a car is approaching a stop sign, it doesn’t mean they will necessarily stop. The pedestrian accident attorneys from Hastings & Hastings recommend taking a walk with your kids and explaining these rules before you let them walk anywhere alone. Ideally, there will always be parents supervising.


Many children enjoy playing in the street, especially in the suburbs. Culdesacs across the country are home to street hockey, hopscotch, and a variety of other games. Make sure your children know that if a car is approaching, it’s their job to get out of the way. Roads are for cars first and foremost.

When biking or riding a scooter, kids need to be following traffic laws. It’s also important to wear a properly fitted helmet and other protective gear like knee pads while riding these vehicles. Check out your child’s safety equipment at the start of the summer season to make sure everything is still in working order and fitting properly.

Supervision and Play Area Safety

Despite playgrounds being made as a safe play area for kids, they can have hazards of their own. When at the playground, check for broken equipment or hazards in the play area. Ideally, a parent should be supervising kids and making sure they play in safe, designated areas and not near busy roads. Set boundaries for outdoor play, such as how far kids can wander and how often they need to check in with you.


If your kids are using outdoor equipment like trampolines, make sure to set rules for safe use. And again, make sure the equipment isn’t broken or too worn down to use safely.

Water Safety

Swimming is an incredibly risky activity for kids, especially for those who are still learning and using floatation devices. Adults should always be supervising children around water, no matter what. Even if a child knows how to swim, there are plenty of risks they can still face. If they get trapped under some pool toys or have a medical emergency while swimming, they will need to be pulled out of the water as soon as possible. Swimming lessons can be life-saving for kids and will help them feel more confident in the water.

When going out on a boat, a kayak, or engaging in any open water activity, everyone should be wearing a life jacket. Make sure the life jackets fit properly and enforce their use.

As we delve into the excitement of summer activities, it’s crucial for parents to prioritize safety precautions. From protecting against sun exposure to reinforcing road safety practices and supervising outdoor play, each measure plays a vital role in ensuring our children’s well-being. By instilling these habits and guidelines, we not only mitigate potential risks but also create an environment where our kids can freely enjoy the joys of summertime adventures with peace of mind.

So, as the sun beckons and the days grow longer, let’s embrace the season with preparedness, vigilance, and above all, a commitment to keeping our children safe during their outdoor pursuits.