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Cartoon of school patrol students.

How senior primary and intermediate students learn to make safer decisions, and contribute through ideas and actions.

Children at this age understand why it is important to make safer decisions around road and rail environments but are:

  • still developing their peripheral vision and hearing (up to age 10)
  • still developing their judgement of the speed and distance of oncoming traffic and trains
  • small in stature and not easily seen by drivers
  • unpredictable and easily distracted and may impulsively cross the road and railway without taking enough time to check for traffic.

The child and their parents, whānau, caregivers and teachers will:

  • discuss and practise where and how to cross the road and railway safely
  • discuss and practise where and how to walk near roads and railways
  • discuss and explain some road rules
  • find areas to play away from roads and railways
  • discuss safe behaviours after identifying a hazard while being a pedestrian or passenger
  • check the child is wearing a helmet when cycling or scooting on roads and footpaths
  • reduce their driving speed to 20km/h or less when passing a stationary school bus and will follow variable or fixed speed limit signs when near a school
  • learn how to use public transport
  • ensure children take their backpack off on the school bus.


The primary learning process involves children:

  • experiencing safe road, cycle and rail environments and both describing and demonstrating explicit safety practices
  • reviewing how they personally contribute towards the safety of themselves and others around road, cycle and rail environments
  • investigating, classifying and using data to describe safe road, cycle and rail behaviours and environments
  • selecting and using effective communication techniques and tools to inform others about safety matters
  • sharing strategies that contribute to a safe and supportive environment for themselves and others in their school community.


Local area a catalyst for design thinking

Case study

Year 5 and 6 students at Omokoroa No. 1 School near Tauranga teamed up to propose ideas for how families cycle to school safely from the far side of State Highway 2.

Mia, Natasha, Kayla and Grace ended up with plans for a flyover with dedicated bike lane, illuminated by solar-powered LED lighting displays.

Year 5-6 lead teacher Liz Webster says her colleagues picked transport as a context for inquiry learning.

“We saw this as a means of supporting students to investigate a problem and move through to them actually planning solutions and sharing ideas.”

The teaching plan focused on technology, maths and literacy.

“We used a diversity of entry points, different YouTube clips and so on. We had to get them thinking about how you identify a problem,” she says.

Colleague Aaron Joe says technology strands provided a framework for lessons.

“The students were going through the process of identifying a problem, who are the main stakeholders, what outcomes exist, and the advantages and disadvantages of each. They followed the whole product development process.”

Developing community transport solutions (Social sciences)

Next page:

Checklist: students in Years 9-11

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