Learning to be wise with your bike

(Last Updated On: November 26, 2014)

You can support students to become involved in cycling at school by checking out resources at the Bike Wise ‘10 for Teachers’. It’s full of activities that will engage students and help them discover why people cycle, as well as learn about safe cycling equipment and practices. Here’s some to get you started:

1. History – Design Behind the Bike

Created by The Open University, this is the first in a series of videos – the others cover Aesthetics, Wheels, Materials, and Frame design. It explores the origins of bicycles, the history and evolution of cycling, and the impact these machines have today. Watch it with your students and ask them to write about the history and changes in bike design.

2. Environmental Benefits of Cycling

Cycling isn’t just good for your health, it’s good for the environment, too. This informative Bike Wise Fact Sheet shows how you can help protect the world around you by leaving the car behind and getting on your bike.

3. Bikes in Schools

Since being launched by the Prime Minister John Key at St Mary’s Primary School, Hastings, in February 2010, 30 schools around New Zealand have implemented a Bikes in Schools initiative. Learn more about it with your students and watch the video to find out why cycling is good for us all.

4. NZTA Curriculum Links

Here you’ll find information and support on road safety created by the NZ Transport Agency. It includes links to curriculum resources and examples of students’ work.

5. Visual exercises (

What’s the best and safest ways to bike to school? Discuss with your students what types of roads are most appropriate for bicycles, such as those with cycle lanes or quieter streets. Then using Google Maps – the ‘Directions’ tool can  help to find cycle-friendly routes – get them to find and mark suitable cycling routes to school from the surrounding area.

6. Bike and Helmet Safety

Watch ‘The Doughnut Monster’s New Bicycle’, an animated video created by students at Freeville School, Christchurch. Hand-drawn characters and sets are used to remarkable effect. On his birthday, Doughnut Monster learns which bicycle and helmet will be safe for him to take to school.

7. Road Code for Cyclists (

Cyclists share the roads with motor vehicles. If you are a cyclist, then for your own safety, and the safety of other road users, you must follow the road rules for bicycles. This NZTA report is a summary of the road code for people who cycle.

8. Big Bike Tune Up (

A ‘Big Bike Tune Up’ is an opportunity to check that students’ (and parents’) bikes and helmets are in safe roadworthy condition before going cycling. Check out the Bike Wise BBTU ‘How to’ guide. This activity could be run as part of a school gala or other activity, used as a fundraiser or run as a ‘freebie’.

9. Go By Bike Day (

National ‘Go By Bike Day’ – on 11 February, 2015 – is a great day for a cycling activity but you could run it on any day that suits your school. Join the fun and organise a day for your school. Register and receive a free kit full of cycle-safety giveaways (stocks are limited).

10. Cycle Skills Training (

Learn how to impart the necessary skills and knowledge to students with this comprehensive guide from the NZTA for the set-up and delivery of cyclist training.

For information, advice and resources for safer cycling check out the
Bike Wise ’10 for Teachers’ at

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