36 answers

10 Year Old Staying Home Alone?

We just moved literally across the street from my son's school and I was wondering if any one had thoughts on him walking home next year and being home alone for no more that 2- 2 1/2 hours. He is 10 and will be in 4th grade. Thanks for any input!

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Perfect age - my 10 year old daughter came home from school on her bike and we live a mile from the school. I got her a cell phone and every day she calls me when she leaves and when she arrives home. She was nervous at first, but it quickly became commonplace and she loves feeling independent.
Good luck.

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I allowed my 9yr old son to walk home (half a block) and he was alone for 2 hours until I got home. He did this for the entire year of 3rd grade and it worked out fine. I had him call me each day when he got to the house or he would call if he was invited by a friends parents to stay with them until I got home.
I did feel apprehensive at first but I ultimately felt comfortable that we live in a "safe" neighborhood and that there were people close by that I could call on if an emergency came up.
My son hated going to the after school program and has really enjoyed his "alone" time. He finishes his homework and can watch his TV shows and is ready to interact/go outside when I get home. I think it has made him a more responsible and independent person...hard to let them do it but will be good in the long run.

1 mom found this helpful

I wouldn't do it. I'm a little over-protective so my son thinks but I won't let him stay home alone unless I'm just running a quick errand and will be back in 30 minutes or less and he's almost 12. It's just not a safe world anymore. This summer he is going to work with me everyday - sure he hates it but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

Don't do it. I wouldn't. He may be mature for his age, but there is too much that could go wrong in those 2 1/2 hours. I have a 17 year old that burned up my microwave while home alone!!

There is also a chance that someone may find out and report you. (I believe the legal age is 13 or something? I wouldn't want that to happen. Don't take the chance sweetie.

You may want to check to see what your local laws states. It depends on how long he will be home alone and the age.

Hi L G. If you feel your child is responsible enough to abide by any rules that are set during the time he is alone and is not afraid to be left alone, I think he will be fine. I would try leaving him alone for a few minutes at a time and build up to the 2 1/2 hours to see how he will do when the time comes for him to have to stay alone daily. There is no law in Texas regarding the age a child can be left alone. As long as they are not physically or mentally handicapped and have a safe place to stay (home and neightborhood). But when it's all said and done, you have to be comfortable with him being alone. You will get those of us who think it's ok, and those who don't. It has to be your decision and one you can deal with.

Good Luck!

i am very against any child under 15 at home by them selves. but of course i was raised old fashion and my parents would not even let me have my friends over unless they were there

I had to do this with my daughter when she was 10,except she was only home by herself for 30 minutes and no more then an hour. We have very strict rules!! We installed a peep hole in the front door so she could look out with out being seen. SDhe was NEVER to answer the door or the phone!! Let the answering machine pick up, if it's mom or dad we will leave a message for you to pick up. Also NO cooking any thing. Work on you home work as soon as you get home that way when we arrive we could help her and check it and then you have the rest of the night. I think responsible 10 year old is very capable of taking care of them self for a short period of time. Also no friends allowed over til we got home

My daughter turned 10 last Saturday, 6/7. She has been walking to and from school for a year now and she enjoys it. I bought her a dual alarm clock. One alarm wakes her up 45 mins before and the 2nd tells her when to leave. She is never late to school and arrives on time to eat breakfast. In the afternoon she walks home with another child that lives the next street over. I also have neighbors who watch for her. If you talk to some of the parents on your street they may be willing to help.

I think she is doing a great job and I know yours will too. Make sure he calls you every afternon to make sure he is home safe. Good luck.

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