Monday, November 28, 2011

Biking the Millennium Track

As a finale to our Safe Cycling Unit, Room 4 headed for Millers Flat to bike the Millenium Track. We drove part way down the track, unloading cyclists and riders at the Lonely Graves and riding from there along the Millenium Track for 13.7km to Beaumont. We were lucky enough to have Alex's dad Jimmy and Jess' mum Maria following behind us with a horse float and trailer just in case anybody got 'tuckered out' and needed a ride to the end. Mrs O and Mrs May were super proud of the fact that EVERYBODY made it the whole way. What an achievement!
Safety was foremost in our minds before we blasted off - bikes were checked, helmets correctly fitted, hi-viz vests on and children instructed to always stay behind the lead teacher.
One of our rest stops alongside the Clutha River

We were fortunate to meet 'Jim' who was up checking the equipment at the privately owned Falla Burn power station. Jim showed us around and explained that this little power station makes enough power to power all households from Beaumont to Alexandra! As you will see from the photo Jimmy and Maria had a bit of a challenge getting across the bridge before the power station.

The undoubted highlight of the day - for Mr Taylor, Tavi and the kids!

A special thank you to the parents who accompanied us on the bike ride or who drove the support vehicles. Without you we couldn't have experienced this amazing ride! We are so fortunate to have such a great cycling track so close to Lawrence. Many of the students are now keen to bike the whole track with their families...... a great holidays activity perhaps.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

School Athletics Day

On Friday November 11th we held our junior school athletics day down at Simpson Park.

Luckily the weather was on our side and although it did get a little damp over lunch time, we were able to complete all of the days events very successfully. We competed in a number of events, including hurdles... distance running....

long jump...

more long jump...

shot put...


high jump...

more high jump....

and MORE high jump...

Chaleece kept going higher....HIGHER.... on the high jump so we were able to capture many action shots of her.

Everyone in Room 4 had a very successful day, with many pupils placing in their events, so congratulations to you all!!! It is lovely to see all of your training paying off during competition, and your level of determination was inspiring!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Meet Mr Taylor

We are very fortunate to have Mr Taylor working in our classroom for the next three weeks. He is on placement from the University of Otago College of Education and will be working in room 4. He has lots of exciting ideas that he will be sharing with us during his time here.


Photographer - Chaleece
Today we got on our bikes!!!!

Constable Jo started the session by teaching us how to carry out a safety check on our bikes.

Legally we have to have a back red reflector on our bike, yellow pedal reflectors and our front and back brakes must work well. These are all legal requirements and if we were riding our bikes on the road without any of these things then we would get a ticket.

We also checked out the size of our bike. We know our bike is the right size if we can sit on the seat and we can reach the ground with the toes of both feet.

To check that our seat is at the right height, we sit on it and our leg should be straight at the botton of the turn of our pedal.

We should also check that our tyres have plenty of air in them, and that our handle bars are tight.

Then it was time to ride.....

Wow did Constable Jo test our skills!!!

The first test was to ride our bike between two fire hoses. The track was very narrow and we had to try and keep both of our wheels within the narrow track. It was harder than you would think.

When we got confident with our balance we were tested further, because we had to look over our right shoulder (as though checking for traffic) and count how many fingers the teacher was holding up - all while staying in the narrow track! That WAS tricky!!!!

Another test of our balance was to ride in and out of a series of cones, which were placed quite closely together.

When we had mastered this skill we had to try and do the activity with just one hand on the handle bars - and then we had to swap hands!
Constable Jo also had some difficult tasks that she ran us through, where we had to practice our turning skills and giving way. We had to ride forward, check behind us for traffic, signal that we were going to turn and then give way to the through traffic.
It was tricky to remember all of the things that we needed to do to be safe, but we did get better the more we practised.
These are all skills that we need to continue to work on a LOT before we are ready to ride on the road on our own!
Our last balancing challenge was to ride as slowly as we could over a very short distance (approx 3m)
Everyone had a go and times ranged from 6.4 seconds to 19.5 seconds.
Jaxon took out the title and won the prize, which was a real accomplishment as he was on the biggest bike of all!
The whole session was really brilliant and we all had a wonderful time working on our biking skills. We realise that we still have a lot to work on, but we will keep thinking about these skills prior to our class bike ride in a couple of weeks.

Fitting Your Helmet

Fitting Your Helmet

Constable Jo came to visit this morning to start teaching us about Cycle Safety.

She began by showing us road signs that we would see as we are out and about riding our bikes.

Then she taught us how to fit our helmets properly so that they will protect our head if we fall off our bike, or if we are knocked off our bikes by a vehicle.

It is very important that our helmets are as tight as they can be, because if they are too loose they will slip and our head will be exposed to danger.

We should have our helmet fitted firmly on our head, with the front visor sitting above our eyebrows across our forehead. It is very important to protect our forehead when cycling.

The straps that come under our chin should have the clips slid up to sit, just under our ear-lobe. This helps to keep our helmet still on our head, and prevents it from slipping sideways if it gets a knock on the side.

The straps under your chin should be so tight that you can't fit more than two fingers in it. If it is too loose it will not protect your head.

Many of us found our helemts to be uncomfortable as we got used to feeling how tight they actually need to be, but the reason was beacause all of us had been wearing our helmets too loosely.

We now know that our helmet needs to be VERY firm in order to protect our heads, but given that our brain is inside our head, we also know how important it is to protect it!