October is International Walk to School Month; the goal of this month is to support and promote active transportation among students. This initiative aims to reduce carbon emissions from vehicular transportation and to make everyday active transportation for students safe, easy, and enjoyable. So how can you make the most of this month? Walking to school isn’t always an easy or viable option, so we’ve created a guide on sustainable transportation so that everyone can make the most of International Walk to School Month!
When walking to school it’s important to make sure that you have a safe and reliable route. Plan to walk with your siblings or friends who live in your neighbourhood and make sure a parent is aware of the route that you take, pick a route and stick to it! In October the temperatures will start to lower so make sure you’re always dressed for the weather. Check the forecast in the morning and be prepared. Try to avoid wearing headphones or any other distractions when walking to school so that you can be aware of your surroundings. This is especially important if you’re walking in high traffic areas and when crossing the road.
Biking to school can be a fun and eco-friendly way to travel. If you wish to bike to school make sure that you also plan a safe and reliable route and that a parent knows the way you travel. The most important rule when biking to school or for fun is to wear a helmet! Riding a bike can be a lot of fun, but accidents happen and its important that you are protected by wearing a well-fitting helmet at all times. Make sure your helmet covers your forehead and doesn’t tip back or forward when you look up or down- be sure to always fasten the straps. Other important safety measures would be to wear reflective clothing so that its easy for drivers, other cyclists, and people to see you. You can also wear elbow and knee pads for added protection. Make sure you don’t have any distractions like headphones and to always be aware of your surroundings when riding your bike. If you live in an area with high traffic, it might be safer to walk to school instead!
Public transportation can be an exciting and easy way to get to school. Taking the bus when you live too far from school to walk or it is unsafe to bike can be a great way to lower your carbon footprint and get where you need to go! Before taking the bus make sure you know which bus route to get on and which stop you need to get off in order to get to school. Keeping a transit route map in your backpack can be handy to make sure you never get lost. As always, make sure a parent knows the bus route that you take and the bus stops that you get on and off of. Because the bus is an enclosed public space you should also bring a mask or face covering to wear during your ride. Make sure to use hand sanitizer or wash your hands with soap and water after you get off the bus.
Learn more about electric vehicle transportation. While walking, biking, or bussing to school may not be an option for you all month long, you can still learn about the other types of sustainable transportation! GreenLearning’s Build your Own Electric Vehicle Model program is a super fun way to learn about the electrification of transportation. In this program you get to build an EV model and calculate the amount of greenhouse gas emissions associated with different fuel types. You might already have electric public transit vehicles in your region!
We hope you enjoyed this GreenLearning “how to” guide and that you have a great International Walk to School Month. Check out our October calendar for more fun activities this month and to keep track of how many days in the month you walk, bike or bus to school. We would also love to see your electric vehicle models! Make sure to take pictures and tag us @GreenLearning or use the hashtag #GreenLearning on social media.