Cycling safely at Fern Green Primary School
14 Aug 2018
As Singapore moves towards being car-lite, people are encouraged to use public transport, as well as alternative modes of transport – like cycling.
For children, cycling is fun! It’s thrilling to feel the wind rushing past as one pedals along. It is also a great family activity that encourages bonding and exercise. But with the availability of roads, shared paths and cycling paths, children need to be taught the basics of cycling safety and etiquette.
With that in mind, educators at Fern Green Primary School decided to introduce cycling lessons to all students in Primary One.
“Cycling is a life skill,” explains Mr Camillus Peh, head of department for physical education and co-curricular activities at Fern Green Primary.
Going far together
Not everyone in the class starts off on the same ground – some students can already manoeuvre a bicycle without a hitch, while others have no experience at all.
But no one is left behind. The lessons are structured to ensure that everyone learns to cycle safely eventually, through the school’s partnership with the Singapore Cycling Federation. For two hours a week, over eight lessons, they take steps to learn the skill.
Students would first learn to balance on two-wheel bicycles without pedalling. Meanwhile, those who have found their balance will learn how to brake properly and stay alert for obstacles in their path. The importance of safety measures, such as wearing helmets, are also emphasised.
Children are also empowered to help one another as they learn alongside their friends. Those who have more experience readily keep a lookout for classmates who are not as confident with the bicycles. They would also encourage their peers who may find it challenging and together, understand the value of not giving up.
Students also enjoy the fruits of their labour at the end of the programme, because being able to cycle opens up many opportunities to have fun with their loved ones, safely and confidently.
“I enjoy the programme in school and I’ve learned to control the bicycle better,” said student Lee Le Xuan. “I go cycling during the weekends at the park connectors with my parents. We sometimes cycle to the swimming pool too.”
“During the school holidays, I go cycling with my sister and father in the morning, as well as during the weekends,” adds student Javian Ng.