Active ways to get to school 

There are numerous ways for children to get to school that are both fun and healthy. This video documents some of the modes of travel that can help children grow strong bones, maintain a healthy weight, and discover the world around them.

Try our top 10 tips of how to get active with your kids

Transcript of Active ways to get to school

- Hi. - Hi.

(woman) Mostly, we're targeting to be ready, eaten,

maybe one dose of children's TV by about 8:30.

The ideal is we're ready to walk out calmly and quietly by 8:40.

(woman 2) Most children live very close by,

so they tend to walk or they take a scooter, or they go on a bike,

or they go on the back of a parent's bike.

We've had a couple of roller-skates, a couple of skateboards occasionally.

Lots of people come in lots of different ways.

I love sort of like balancing on things

and I tried to have a go on a unicycle.

It's quite hard because you really need to concentrate on the road.

Whenever I feel not too puffed out but a bit puffed out,

I know I'm going to be good.

It gives the children that time between home and school

to wake up their brain, get some fresh air, move their legs around,

which gets them in the right mood for learning for the rest of the day.

You notice that those children are a bit more wide-awake and ready to start.

It's also a sociable way. We try and encourage children to find somebody

that they could walk to school with, and that engages new friendships.

I quite like walking because I get to chat with my mum on the way.

When I'm walking, I like to look around.

There's always a robin on the tree and it's always whistling. It's quite cute.

It's a really good chance for people who maybe have parents

who are rushing to work after they've walked to school.

(girl) I walk to school with my mum

because on the way she goes to the train station to take the train to work.

Even though it's a short distance, I feel like I've done something good,

that I've not polluted our planet.

(Sarah) The children are aware that it helps the environment

and the air that they breathe in.

(Cate) The scooter thing just took off and everyone was sharing or borrowing.

Parents were coming in on scooters, too.

I know loads of tricks on my scooter. That's my favourite thing to do.

(boy) I can do an ollie, I can do a kick flip,

and if I have a ramp I can do a 360 in the air.

(Dorian) Normally, I go with my mum. I don't go with nobody else.

(Sasha) I sometimes go by myself.

Sometimes my dad takes me, sometimes my mum takes me.

When we realised it would be a good thing for Aykan to have the capacity

and right, if you like, to head off to school on his own,

what we did was we walked our way through a few acceptable routes

and we demarcated the ones that really wouldn't be good.

There's just too much risk, there's not enough formal crossings.

The key thing was were there pedestrian crossings

with little red men and little green men to follow?

That's the only places he's allowed to cross the road. There are no others.

Because one part of the journey is on quite a narrow pavement,

I think the only other skill we had to introduce

was not knocking people over on the pavement.

Specifically if they're coming the other way.

(Sarah) There are so many opportunities to avoid the main roads

and potentially dangerous crossings.

Going through green areas and seeking them out, as well,

is a really good thing to do.

It gets air in my face and gets my legs pumped up and ready.

You don't feel lighter, but you kind of feel more agile.

In the car, you just take the roads, so on a bike, it feels more free.

I think the biggest benefit to Aykan now being of an age

where we can let him go on his own if necessary is that he knows we trust him.

He knows the way, our school is very near.

It's really not more than a five, ten minute journey.

But we now know he knows how to cross roads,

he's respectful of people on the pavement,

and I think it gives him a terrific boost

to know he's trusted and can be independent.

Hi.

I walk with my two friends, Thalia and Eleanor, and we walk alone.

I always want to be on time so I don't let my friends down.

We always walk on time.

I think we're going to watch another movie.

There's no adults or parents and I feel quite grown-up.

We talk about school and if there's an assessment week,

we kind of tell each other about if we're worried and hope we don't fail.

We talk about stuff that happens around us and what we did on the weekend.

I don't want to go to an all-girls school.

We started it this year,

so it's really exciting because we've only just been doing it.

(Cate) Most year six children are very keen to show that they're growing up

and that they're independent at secondary school.

They don't want mum or dad or carer to take them to school.

We have lots of mums who have to hide behind the gates

and aren't actually allowed to come in and be seen.

I think that's important. I can remember being like that when I was a child.

You watch them and I know that some parents follow their children home

for the first few times without them noticing

to make sure they are crossing the roads properly.

That's important for children to talk to their parents about.

Find a way and practise it with their parents

so that they feel safer and also they can get to school in one piece,

which is the main thing.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON PHYSICAL ACTIVITY FOR CHILDREN

WWW.NHS.UK/ACTIVEKIDS

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