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At what age would you let your DC'S pop to the shops on their own?

(20 Posts)
happymostofthetime Wed 18-Feb-09 16:22:24

Our DS is nearly 8, we live in a village just off the high street and we let him pop round the corner to a shop on his own on Saturday. He loved it I was a nervous wreck for the 5 mins he was gone!

CarGirl Wed 18-Feb-09 16:24:08

Depends commpletely on where you live etc but dd1 was probably 10 put we live in a small town and I had to rely on her crossing busy roads using the proper crossings and it was to tesco!!!

Hulababy Wed 18-Feb-09 16:27:56

Depends how far away, types of roads, etc.

DD is 6y and she loves to be allowed to nip into the grocers or sweet shop and buy one or two bits for me whilst I wait in the car - did this a few times last Autumn as the baby I looked after would always be asleep after school pick up. But there were no roads and I could see door entrance

Will be a while yet til she can go to the shops on her own from home though.

FAQinglovely Wed 18-Feb-09 16:28:39

Started letting DS1 go to the shop (across 2 very minor roads where traffic can only go in one direction at a time) - about 2/3 minutes walk away in September when he'd just turned 8.

He started walking up to his Junior school (only one road - but a busy one) a few weeks after - but there's a pedestrian crossing and he wasn't really on his own as there would be loads of parents crossing the same road at the same time.

He did the post box (similar to school walk except no-one to supervise him on the crossing) and a 5 minute walk to the right once across the busy road (oh and a minor road to cross) just before Christmas.

Unfortunately we've since moved house and none of the above things are quite close enough for him to do on his own again yet - well maybe the postbox.

I think it's going to be the end of the summer before he's doing the shop run again. The school run I could probably see him across the major road and then let him go ahead quite safely reasonably soon - although it's a good 10/15 minutes walk there's actually only 2 roads to cross - the 2nd of which is right next to the school and has a lovely lollipop lady.

Mercy Wed 18-Feb-09 16:29:09

My dd is almost 8 too and I can't see her going to the local shop for a while yet - but our shop is on a busy main road, with a bus stop right near it, cars speed up our road, nowhere safe to cross really. We are in London btw.

I'm making it sound awful aren't I?

FAQinglovely Wed 18-Feb-09 16:33:27

Mercy - not at all.As Hulababy says it depends entirely on where you live as well as the child in question.

For instance - I used to be next door neighbours (literally) to the school. I never let DS1 walk next door on his own until he was nearly at the end of YR1 - his general maturity developed later.

I let DS2 go almost from the start of reception as I could trust him better at that age (compared to DS1) to simply walk out our gate, take 5 steps up the road and into the next one. I also told the school he was doing it on the off chance he didn't turn up (I knew it was highly unlikely but thought I'd better let them know) so they could let me know ASAP.

He's absolutely GUTTED that his "going to school on his own" has been cut short so soon - at least DS1 is of an age where we can gradually increase the distance from which he walks ahead of us, put poor DS2 is stuck with me walking him to school for the next 2 1/2yrs at least grin

marymoocow Wed 18-Feb-09 16:33:55

Ds was 10 but he too had to cross quite a busy road, and it takes him at least 10 mins to get there buy what he needs and then get back. He also walks to his friends or grannys now on his own which is about 10 mins walk, but i do text his friends mum/granny to let them know he is on his way, and they let me know when he has got there. I must admit he gets a big buzz from doing it.

scienceteacher Wed 18-Feb-09 16:34:52

About 7 for us.

marymoocow Wed 18-Feb-09 16:37:17

FAQ - it used to be a lollipop man in my day grin. Glad they have still got someone there though.

muggglewump Wed 18-Feb-09 16:40:08

DD was coming up for 7.
It totaly depends on the child and the area though.

FAQinglovely Wed 18-Feb-09 16:40:46

grin - well this is definitely a lady - I swear she's younger than me - certainly no older. Very lovely, and it's nice to know that as his confidence grows that although it's a bit of a trek to get there there's only the once crossing which is a bit dicy - the other having someone there to make sure he's safe.

And that dodgy crossing is right near our house so we can gradually build up the distance that he walks on his own, and hopefully by the time we've got to him walking from across the main road he'll be old enough and confident enough to do the whole thing.

It's so awkward though as I have to take DS2 to school as well, and it's exactly the same route - so think when we get to that stage I'll have to boot DS1 out the door a bit earlier so that he doesn't feel like I'm following him and watching LOL.

notsoteenagemum Wed 18-Feb-09 16:41:15

DD now 8 has been going to the shop at the end of the road from 6 even though she got stopped by the police the first time!
She crosses our one way street and I can't see her go in.
She loves being allowed to go. She asked if she could take DS 4 today I nearly said yes but I just don't trust him enough yet.

magnolia74 Wed 18-Feb-09 16:48:48

Dt's are 9 and have been going to the shops since 7. Up one small road and accross a big minor road.

marymoocow Wed 18-Feb-09 16:53:38

Don't worry I was going back to when I was walking to the school as a dc grin. As to booting your ds1 out of the door a bit earlier I have to do that now, as we (Ds1, ds2 and dd and myself) are all at the same school - I work there. It is a very good insentive for ds1 getting ready quickly as he knows he can go on his own then.

KerryMumbles Wed 18-Feb-09 16:54:11

18.

otherwise they will hang round, smoke cigarettes and get dirty old men to buy them cans

cory Wed 18-Feb-09 17:15:46

My 8yo does this. He has to cross one street (not terribly busy). He also walks home from school on his own: 3 roads of which one is busy but has traffic lights, one has a lollipop lady.

I allow 12yo dd and 8yo ds to take the bus into town together and go round the shops there.

cat64 Wed 18-Feb-09 17:20:28

Message withdrawn

MrsBoo Wed 18-Feb-09 17:25:31

My DS is 9 and has only just started walking home from school alone (but we have to meet him as there is a very busy road with no crossing or anything). He has never asked to go to the shop, and he wouldnt have to even cross the busy road to do that.
We live in a quiet village, but has busy traffic.

Jux Wed 18-Feb-09 17:31:07

Dd's been going to the shops on her own since she was 8. No prob. There are some mums who won't - even now they're 9/10 - let their kids walk home from school with her and it's literally just round the corner. I have to go and get them if they're coming after school. You can get too precious iykwim.wink

Fennel Wed 18-Feb-09 17:34:02

My 8 and 7yo dds have done it since they were 6. I occasionally let 4yo dd3 go with one of them. It's about 1/3 mile and no real roads to cross.

Small village, they know a lot of people along the route who would look out for them if they had problems. And I don't worry much about this sort of thing.

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