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father teaching daughter about gun safetyfather teaching daughter about gun safety

Teaching Your Children About Gun Safety

Safety is of paramount importance when dealing with guns at any age and children should be taught early and often about gun safety


In addition to the basics of practicing firearm safety and gun safety at home, children should be carefully and gradually nurtured in knowledge about firearms as they reach the ability to understand guns.

This will be at different ages for all children, as kids develop at various speeds. However, whenever a child shows an interest in guns, that is the ideal time to begin teaching them about gun safety. Here are some helpful tips for teaching your children about gun safety.

Remove the Mystery

Most accidents where children find a firearm at home and cause an injury is because all they know is “stay away” when it comes to a gun. Obviously, this is not enough; it only sparks curiosity in young children. Don’t just tell them to leave it alone – tell them why to leave it alone. Explain the purpose and power of a firearm. Use age-appropriate language, illustrations, and visual aids. Separate the reality of firearms from what is seen on television and video games. People who have been shot do not miraculously get up or “recharge” for another round.

In short, seek to satisfy a child’s curiosity about guns in a safe, controlled environment. Here are some suggestions:

  • Show the child your unloaded handgun and explain how it works.
  • Show them safe handgun procedures with their own toy guns (never point a gun at anyone, how to carry it properly, etc.)
  • Start small with a BB gun to demonstrate how guns work.
  • When appropriate, show children how a gun impacts an animal from hunting.
  • When appropriate, take the child to a shooting range, demonstrate proper gun etiquette, and show the child a used target to help explain the power of a firearm.
  • You must gauge the maturity of your own child to determine when certain actions are appropriate and helpful.

Model Proper Gun Safety Procedures

“Do as I say and not as I do” is not a winning procedure for parenting, and certainly not with guns. Model proper gun safety procedures before your children at every opportunity. Allow them to watch you unload, clean, and perform maintenance on your firearms. This is a great time to answer questions and seize teachable moments. Be sure you practice exceptional firearm safety and usage on the range, in the woods, in the backyard, and other places you go to shoot.

  • Treat every firearm as if it were loaded.
  • Handle any firearm safely, pointing it down or in another safe direction.
  • Never point a firearm at anything you do not intend to shoot; never point a gun at a person.
  • Don’t depend on the firearm’s safety mechanism.
  • Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
  • Always wear ear and eye protection.
  • Carefully unload the gun, remove the magazine, and clear the action of any remaining ammunition.
  • Leave the action open and visually confirm the gun is unloaded.

More gun safety principles are “caught” than taught, so modeling proper gun safety before your children is essential.

Teach More at Appropriate Ages or Stages of Development

As your child matures, more appropriate knowledge can be shared, such as how to load and unload a firearm, how to carry one safely in the woods, how to aim and fire at a target, principles of aiming and accuracy, and home defense measures. Teaching children to handle and respect firearms is the best method to prevent accidents and create responsible gun owners.

C2 Tactical offers various training classes for handling firearms, shooting, and self-defense. Call our Tempe or Phoenix locations today and speak with a team member about bringing your child to the range, safety instruction and more.

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