Human trafficking is the exploitation of vulnerability, and no one is as vulnerable as children who have not been prepared to recognize and avoid the wiles of “tricky people.” (Credit to Safely Ever After for the “tricky people” concept. Check out their site safelyeverafter.com for more resources on child safety.)
That is why we developed the Not a Product discussion guides, to give parents and educators a tool to discuss safety and tricky people with elementary and pre-school children in a non-threatening way, keeping to age-appropriate concepts.
A “tricky person” is someone who tries to get a child to break their safety rules or hurt their body. A tricky person doesn’t see how valuable a child is as a person, they only see what they can get from the child. They see a product they could use however they like. A tricky person can be someone a child knows well, doesn’t know at all, or knows just a little bit… like your mail carrier or the ice cream man. A tricky person might give your child “the uh-oh feeling”. Let them know that’s an important feeling to listen to.
The Not a Product Family Discussion Guide introduces some tricks that tricky people use to get kids to break their safety rules or to hurt kids. It also affirms children’s value because they have dignity and worth.
We also have volunteers available to come present Not a Product in elementary classrooms.
Even young children can grasp these concepts:
Dignity means you respect yourself and you expect other people to respect you. You like yourself and you treat yourself well. You expect other people to treat you well.
“You have worth” means you are valuable and important, just for being you! Not because of anything you do or how you look or how smart or talented you are, but just because you are a human being, you have worth.
Because your child has dignity and worth – because he is valuable, she respects herself and expects other people to respect her – your child can choose to be kind and have courage. He can treat other people with the respect he expects them to show him.
The Prince/ss Not a Product discussion guides go along with six classic and recent Disney movies:
- Beauty and the Beast
- The Little Mermaid
After watching a movie, use the guide to start a discussion about the ways tricky people try to use someone like a product and what your child could do if a tricky person tried those tricks on her! Download your discussion guide here or by clicking on the image above.