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Bike-it at Willingdon Primary School

September 2016

Well done to everyone who has participated in Bike It events this year!

SILVER AWARD!

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We are now one of only three schools in Sussex to have achieved the SILVER award!

Bike it is a project run jointly between Willingdon Primary School and Sustrans. The aim is to increase the number of pupils, parents and school staff using sustainable transport to and from school and thereby reduce traffic and congestion around the school.

 As a school, we work through three different levels of the School Mark – bronze, silver and gold. There are different activities we have to work through at each level to achieve the Mark. In 2013, we were the first school in East Sussex to achieve the Bronze Award. We are now currently working towards the Silver which is focused more on what we can do as a school with less support from Sustrans. It relies on pupils, parents and staff making that commitment to change over a longer term.

Exciting Events!

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Within the Bike It project we have run a wide range of activities which cater for different levels of cycling from beginners to racers. Children in every year group have the opportunity to participate in bike and scooter activities at least once throughout the whole year.  Our Learn to Ride sessions for our youngest pupils are the highlight of our school year with children ditching their stabilisers and learning to ride with confidence on the school field.

We also facilitate rides out into the local environment to develop pupil awareness of how to ride safely on the roads as well as exploring the local area. These usually end up at a play area with a picnic and involve all ages. We sometimes combine our rides with Polegate School to involve the whole school community.

County Run Bikeability Sessions

Although run separately from the Bike It Project, children are encouraged to participate in the County Run Bikeability Sessions which take place in the school grounds and on local roads during September. This is an opportunity for children to gain the cycle proficiency qualifications which are now known as Bikeability. East Sussex County Council run these sessions within school and children are actively encouraged to try to gain levels 1-3 Bikeability to equip them with the skills they need to negotiate the roads to school. This is all done in the local area so pupils feel confident cycling and walking to and from school. We work alongside this team to help promote cycling and encourage children and parents to participate in these courses.

Reception, Years 1 & 2 enjoy a 'Stabiliers Off session'!

 

Bike It Breakfast!

There are also Bike Breakfasts which are well supported by pupils and parents. These run from 8.15-8.45am at various times throughout the academic year and any pupil, parent or member of staff who has travelled sustainably to school that day can have a free breakfast. We normally have between 150-200 people at these breakfasts and thank the Friends for their ongoing commitment to financing these.

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Staff too!

We’ve also run staff competitions both in house and as part of the County Travel Choice Challenge.  Staff changed the way they travelled to work for the month of May last year. We won the school’s competition and our group category.

 

We were the proud winners of a hamper for staff and three balance bikes for the children which are now used in Foundation Stage, Year 1 and Year 2.

We have invested in bikes and helmets to ensure that children can access cycling at different times but would like to take this even further. (Please see our latest project section)

The Big Pedal

Pupils also take part in the Big Pedal which is a whole country competition run by Sustrans.

Children have also participated in Bike Races as part of Eastbourne Cycling Festival.

Activities for the rest of the academic year include……

Our Latest Project

We are currently looking into the possibility of developing a BMX pump track on the school grounds for use as an after school club and during PE lessons.

There are a small group of children working on developing the idea which will then require assistance (digging) with other children and parents. If you are interested in helping out, please get in touch, as any help would be greatly appreciated.