Whangaparaoa School
Teacher cycle skills instructor training

 

Background

Harbour Sport partners with ‘Bike On’ Charitable Trust to support schools to build bike tracks, purchase bikes and helmets, and facilitate the training of students and staff in cycle skills. This innovative initiative has seen the access to regular, safe riding opportunities rise from approximately 30% to 100% in supported schools across the country.

The ‘Bikes in Schools’ project has so far facilitated the regular cycling of over 18,000 children across more than 70 schools nationwide, and is expanding every day. Furthermore, both physical health of students and local environmental sustainability are enhanced by this scheme.

Whangaparaoa School decided to take a step towards becoming a healthier, more active and environmentally friendly school by building a bike track. With the initial help of Harbour Sport, they have worked closely with ‘Bikes in Schools’ Regional Project Manager to open the new bike track and have also trained 35 teachers in ‘Learn to Ride’ workshop to be able to deliver biking skills to the students.

Solution

The graduating year 6 class of 2013 first suggested the idea of a bike track 4 years ago as part of a student satisfaction survey.  The idea was developed to encourage environmentally sustainable transport, healthier lifestyle choices, and to educate children on bike skills and road safety. Working with ‘Bikes in Schools’ and Harbour Sport, the school fundraised for 3 years to achieve today’s finished project; an asphalt track spanning the circumference of their entire school field, including ‘speed bumps’ and snaked corners plus a fleet of bikes and helmets.

Harbour Sport’s primary input came through the teacher ‘Learn to Ride’ workshop that was delivered in January 2017. The enthusiastic instructors were welcomed by the equally motivated staff of Whangaparaoa School, resulting in an enjoyable, educational and productive training day.

Results / Impact

All staff made the most of their training, demonstrating a positive outlook on the future success of the track.  The workshop was tailored to help utilise their new bike track, achieving their aim to educate pupils on bike skills and safety. Fundamental skills and activities were taught to mimic road situations, develop advanced bike techniques and improve confidence of their students. Ability specific alternatives were demonstrated, and advice given on how to teach a new rider.

From a feedback survey, 100% of participants strongly agreed that Harbour Sport staff were well prepared, clear in their knowledge, and enthusiastic. One teacher said “all the activities were fun and engaging, the instructors made us all feel confident, even if we weren’t!”. They also enjoyed the course content, stating that it was “a great balance of practical biking and explanations”,  and that they “loved the range of games and activities”.

The workshop was a huge success due to the passionate staff from both Harbour Sport, and the school coming together. The less confident teachers enjoyed the day and now felt as though they could deliver bike skills to their students.  One lady said “the course brought back my biking confidence after 15 years, and I now feel like I have the practical advice and skills to teach the children how to be safe on their bikes”.

Conclusion

Harbour Sport will continue to support this amazing project through mentoring sessions beginning next month.  These will be available to all 35 teachers and will include observations of the teachers delivering  the learn to ride content to  the Whangaparaoa students. The bike track is now open to students during the day, and to the public after school hours.  The school sourced a fleet of bikes and was also  lucky enough to be donated helmets.

As one of the now, twenty four, ‘Bikes in Schools’ tracks in Auckland alone, it is a clear demonstration of the biking growth in the country. Full support of the primary school was evident not only in the huge congregation present at the opening, but also by the infectious enthusiasm demonstrated by the teaching staff.  The track has brought a new life to the school and we look forward to hearing  of more of their future successes in the bike world!

For more information visit Bike On or Harbour Sport

 

 

“I can deal with bikes more practically now, I feel confident in my own bike knowledge. This means I can pass it onto the students in a positive and engaging way. It will be perfect for the track.”  

– Teacher from Whangaparaoa School 

Ash James, Harbour Sport

Phone: 094154694  Mobile: 027 240 7120 Fax: 09 415 4594 Email: csadvisor@harboursport.co.nz

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