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Benefits of walking to school

Walk to School Week 2019 is fast approaching – 20th – 25th May.  Now the weather is starting to improve, this is the perfect time to get practicing and leave the car at home.

It’s easy for us to recognise the fabulous benefits of walking but, for children, it might seem a bit of a chore.

Firstly, let’s remind ourselves of the benefits of walking to school: –

  1. More time to chat to your children about how they are going to approach their day.
  2. A walk before school will let off a bit of steam before they are expected to sit still in class.
  3. Having to get going a little earlier will help teach them time management skills.
  4. Walking is better for the environment.

Let’s get motivated.  Here are some ideas to liven them up to get going:

Walk with friends

Speak to other parents and find out who else is joining in on the Walk to School Week.  Even if they live a little further away, meeting up somewhere on route to school gives your child a sense that they are joining into something important and fun!

children walking to school

Pick up the break-time snack on the way

A great distraction to the fact that they are walking to school and also a good way to teach your child about both the value of money, and how to choose healthy snacks at the supermarket.


Provide a financial allowance

If your child really sees walking to school as a chore, make it part of their weekly pocket money tasks.  I’m sure once they find out how much better they feel and how their concentration levels in class improve, they will want to walk come rain or shine! Rewarding children for walking does seem a little like cheating.  However, the health benefits and lifestyle change your family will experience is definitely worth it!

child with piggy bank

Safety First

Don’t forget that although Walk to School Week is a great motivator to get your child outside, doing exercise and socialising with friends, what’s most important is your child’s safety.  If you are walking with them, use this opportunity to teach the basics about road safety and directions.  You can also talk about other issues they may encounter when they are a little older and they start to venture out alone.   From getting lost to avoiding unfamiliar dogs, these are scenarios that you can discuss positively during your morning walk.  Your morning walk isn’t the time to bring up stranger danger.  This is a much more serious issue and something that you should sit down and talk to your child about on a regular basis. We’ve found some great resources for road safety awareness to help you continue your child’s safety education:

Think! Education Resources