Re: Educate kids about danger without scarring them for life?
My boys are allowed to play outside unattended. I'm in and out and can always hear them.
Anyways, with my 5 year old we've talked about this before and he's not scared. I've told him that sometimes people may make up lies about mommy and daddy to get you to go with them, they may try to grab you, they may try to give you candy or presents, etc. I told him that he should never go anywhere with anyone unless I have said yes first. I have told him what to do in case we get split up somewhere (zoo etc) and have told him what to do in case someone does try to take him or make him go with them (pee in pants, scream, kick, yell, say help, etc).
ds1 is very social and is not afraid of strangers. He does introduce himself a lot and talk to them, which I would never discourage. But I do feel like I have equipped him with common sense on strangers. This talk however will always be happening. Just because I've talked to him a few times doesn't mean the discussions will stop.