July 12, 2009 06:00 PM

Michael Loccisano/Getty

Times have changed since actor John Leguizamo was a child. Once able to walk to school without a care in the world or hitch a ride on the subway when he was a young boy, the doting dad admits that the same doesn’t ring true for his own children. “I used to go every place by myself. You’d play on the street until the street lamps went on,” he tells PARADE.

“My kids are never allowed to go anywhere alone…There’s always somebody watching them. It’s a very different time.”

That said, while Allegra Sky, 10, and Ryder Lee, 9, may not have the same privileges once granted to their father, the two are happily reaping the benefits in other areas! A self-proclaimed “strict” dad — albeit “for the right reasons” — John’s household rules are not unlike many other parents in that swearing is unacceptable. However, in addition to prohibiting his kids from using foul language, the actor has taken it a bit further — swearing is off-limits for him as well! “If I say a bad word, I have to give them a quarter,” he explains. From the sound of things, both Allegra and Ryder have started quite the collection.

“With those quarters they’ve bought themselves a car. And now they’re working on a condo.”

In John’s new movie Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, his character Sid longs to be a father but yet does not fully understand the responsibilities that come along with the job. For John, his onscreen role mirrored his own journey into fatherhood. Never realizing “how difficult parenting was going to be,” he admits the task can at times become a bit overwhelming. “You’ve got to help your kids figure out their own purpose in life while you’re trying to figure out your purpose in life,” he says. “Where’s the manual? If I could find the right parenting manual, I would be reading it.”

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is now in theaters. Allegra and Ryder are his children with wife Justine Maurer.

Source: PARADE

— Anya

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