How to be a Little LifesaverDecember 18, 2014

Some things can't be taught in the classroom, especially during the summer. Little Lifesavers, which North Queensland observed from December 15-19, aims to educate children on CPR. This part of Oz faces the Great Barrier Reef, one of the country's major attractions. During this time of the year, the sea beckons. Who can't resist the glint of the white sands? Nothing like a swim, even a surf. But drowning can happen.

Here are five tips to make this summer a season to remember:

Teach the tykes how to swim. No one is too young to learn how to swim. There'll be trepidation, especially if their feet won't touch the base of the pool (or the sand). Getting over it will take time, so do it as early as possible. If the child has asthma, then it will be better to learn the basic strokes right away.

Never forget to take precautions. Just because the children can swim doesn't mean you don't need to keep a watch. Make sure they won't be out of sight, and this would be true on the beach. Use floaters. Make sure they're wearing goggles, as eye problem(s) can ruin a holiday.

Tell them about the sharks. The sea has always been a fun place to frolic. As long as you stay close to the shoreline. But some of us can't help but venture farther. There have been cases of shark attacks and the reasons vary. Can it be your hands that might caught the attention of the predators? Might it be the blood? Are you mistaken for an unsuspecting fish? The answer is not certain. Otherwise, there have been a decrease in the number of shark attack victims during the past years. Better not wander far.

Tell them about the other animals too. There are lots of creatures in the sea that children must avoid at all cost. Not that they're in danger if they stay in the beach, but we never know. They may be too young to know the sea snake, the sting ray, and the sea urchin. Any of these can end the holiday on a painful note. So keep a watch. Better yet, play with them. (Nothing like happy memories.)

Avoid sunburn. Forget the talk on global warming. Staying out for too long makes your skin reddish. It leads to discomfort after a day or two. Before stepping out of the sun, make sure to apply sunscreen lotion on your arms and legs. Don't forget the kids, not minding their protests. (If you have to promise them a treat, then do it.) Skin cancer is be a serious matter, as it's one of the illnesses that most have little knowledge of. The early symptoms are hard to detect, so better be safe than sorry.

If we miss anything, do let us know. It can save a life.

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