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Do you let your reception children use scissors independently?

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Teacher1212, Oct 4, 2009.

  1. We had a scissors related accident a couple of weeks ago. Child was using them appropriately, sitting, cutting a piece of paper and cut into her finger, lopped a tiny bit off. Nasty, lots of blood.
    Dad was very unhappy about the level of supervision, believed that with scissors there should be an adult sitting with the children.
    I showed him our scissors risk assessment to show him that we really were thinking about safe use. I then showed him how this particular accident was just that - an accident. It was a finger on the child's left hand, the finger was underneath the paper and so its position was not visible to the child. I explained that closer supervision would not have prevented it, the same as not being able to stop children having nasty falls or bumps. And then I assured him that we would be going over correct and safe use of scissors again with all of the children.
    In spite of still being very unhappy that it had happened, he could see that there wasn't really anything else we could have done to stop it happening.
    Children have to learn how to use scissors and they do. This child will probably be the most careful of all of them!!
    Having a risk assessment to hand helped me to handle the situation with an upset parent and although the new EYFS suggests we don't need them all written down, it might prove a useful tool for your situation.
  2. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    Myth: Children need to be wrapped in cotton wool to keep them safe
    The reality
    Health and safety law is often used as an excuse to stop children taking part in exciting activities, but well-managed risk is good for them.
    Myth: Adults can't put plasters on children's cuts
  3. Victoria Plum

    Victoria Plum New commenter

    Thanks for your messages of support everyone! There are deeper issues at work which I won't go into but I have been made to feel like I am doing a rubbish job after this! (Maybe some paranoia on my part!) I will be digging out the scissors risk assessment - which we DO have and speaking to this parent myself next week, She did that lovely thing of going above my head straight to the headteacher. My Nursery Nurse had already explained what had happened to her at home time. These things happen and it makes me angry when you are made to feel rubbish over it! I have been teaching 15 years now and can count scissor incidents on one hand - mostly hair cutting!! One little chap had a similar experience to the one mentioned above - he nicked the end of his finger while perfectly safely cutting. It bled something awful and the little fella keeled over when he saw the blood! Drama, drama! However, Mum and Dad were marvellous about it and said to me, "Don't worry, these things happen!"
  4. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

  5. We also have chainsaws, al qaeda terrorists, nitroglycerine and 10 foot crocodiles. We feel that the children need to become independent as well as aware of potential risks.
  6. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    I'm impressed SOAPy our crocodile is only 8 foot
  7. I do hope SOAPY you have done a comprehensive and transparent risk assessment, and had it signed off by Occ Health + Safety, etc.
  8. As for the OP, if parents find 'children's' scissors a risk requiring constant supervision, what is their perspective on pencils with a sharp point, computers using electricity, toilets where they could drown in water ...... and so the list goes on.You can get a cut from paper, not just scissors. ALL CHILDREN need to use scissors independently. If they choose to cut their hair, clothes, etc they are showing a true sense of independence and risk! As for the child who accidentally chopped his/her skin, that child is finally learning to use scissors as a tool effectively.
  9. I once taught a year 6 child who managed to cut the cuff off his sweatshirt. I was on supply and mortified but the headteacher was excellent and said that it had happened before and that his mum would be cross with him not me. So the age of the children is not always an indicator of how sensible they are with scissors. I tend to think that anything can be dangerous if not used properly, how many times have you had a paper cut for example? We also have woodwork as continuous provision but it can get hairy sometimes!
  10. Leapyearbaby64

    Leapyearbaby64 New commenter

    We've had a couple of hairdressing incidents this year. Do you find that it's never the curly-haired children that get their hair cut by someone else? Always the child with a pefect straight bob IME.

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