If you intend to go on a boating trip with your kids then nothing is more important than safety. Kids are active and reckless by nature and no matter how much you scare them they are bound to make mistakes.
As an adult it is your duty to keep them away from danger at the same time ensuring that you don’t become as restrictive as to kill all the fun. After all enjoying the trip is your ultimate aim. The importance of organisation cannot be overemphasised in this regard. Plan even the smallest of details. Start with the simplest of things and keep a backup plan for everything.
The first thing is preparation. Get your safety gear before you go on the trip so that you can teach your kids how to use them properly, especially life jackets. Sometimes even adults falter in its use. Get the perfect size life jackets; if they are loose on your kids they are worthless.
If you intend to use toe-boats, read well regarding their use, get advice from an expert if possible. Make sure there is a chain of command. This may sound funny but in a tense situation people should know whom to listen to and follow. Be the leader and put forth some ground rules for the kids. These could be as simple as that they are not allowed to sit on the side rails, run on the boat etc.
You must also lead by example. Kids follow your activities; if you want them to wear their life jackets wear yours. Assign duty to an adult to keep an eye on the kids at all times, this is very crucial and can be difference between falling into and avoiding trouble. Teach the kids to work with you on the boat. This way it is easy to keep an eye on them and they will also stay busy enough to avoid recklessness.
Now the most crucial thing, you should try to avoid mess and confusion on the boat. Ask everybody to keep things where they belong. The biggest danger on a boat trip is somebody tripping over something lying unnoticed on the floor of the boat. This can lead to misadventures. Stay alert and careful.