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Teachers learn bike riding, so children learn the rules of the road.

Bicycling is a fun and healthy form of transportation and physical activity, bringing many benefits to both the cyclist and to his or her community. It is also the first independent mode of travel for many children, aside from walking. Bicycling requires skill, technique, and an awareness of the rules of the road that is often not part of school curriculum. New Jersey Association for Health Physical education, Recreation and Dance (NJAHPERD) and the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation center at Rutgers (VTC) are working together to help Physical Education teachers implement the New Jersey Bike School curriculum, an on-bike safety program targeted to students in grades 4-6.

NJAHPERD and VTC have been longtime partners in supporting increased opportunities for youth bicycle education. Later this summer that partnership will continue as the groups work together to host training for Physical Education teachers that will provide the knowledge and resources to implement an on-the-bicycle safety education program in their school as part of their physical education classes. Participants will be guided through the New Jersey Bike School curriculum as instructors showcase lessons critical for elementary and middle school children to learn. Participants will receive hands-on training that will cover basic bicycle handling skills, guidance on setting up age-appropriate bicycle activities, resources for equipment, and grading rubrics.

Early, hands-on education of bicycle riding skills and behaviors is critical to developing good habits and the confidence necessary to facilitate a lifetime of safe and enjoyable riding. It is hoped that the Physical Education teachers who are trained in the curriculum and program implementation incorporate bicycle education into their yearly education programs in multiple grades for years to come. By targeting children in the 4th through 6th grades, we are striving for a lifelong appreciation for cycling. Student’s on-bike experiences will not only help with their own health and safety, but contribute toward them becoming advocates for safer and better cycling infrastructure in their community.

About the Grantee

New Jersey Association for Health Physical Education Recreation and Dance (NJAHPERD)

NJAHPERD is dedicated to advancing quality health education, physical education, recreation, dance education, and athletics through professional development, programs, advocacy and collegian exchange. The Association promotes development of healthy active lifestyles for students, educators, community members.