To gear up for Bike to School Week this year (May 30 – June 3) we’ll be profiling a number of “Bike Champions” who we think have taken bike advocacy for kids to the next level. Our first profiled Champion is a teacher at Buckingham Elementary in Burnaby, Liz Cramb.
Liz Cramb is a Grade 5/6 Teacher at Buckingham Elementary in Burnaby. She knows the benefits of cycling, and tries to instill a sense of understanding of the importance of active transportation in her students as well. All too often she sees students being driven and dropped off, leading to parking and congestion issues including decreased safety for all. Organizing Bike to School Week is Liz’s tool for getting kids out of cars and onto their bikes.
Liz coordinated Bike to School Week for the first time last year and approached it as a leadership opportunity for her students. This came from the social studies curriculum in which senior elementary students are meant to implement a plan of action to address a community issue, which in this case is both health of individuals and safety. Her students made posters and gave presentations in other classes to promote Bike to School Week. Greeters from her class welcomed students who biked to school each day by helping lock them up and place a sticker on the Bike to School Week poster to show that they had biked to school. Liz says that the student leadership style of running Bike to School Week is important because “the older kids need to feel needed, wanted, and able to contribute”.
This year Liz hopes to have a temporary bike rack installed at the school so there will be more parking spaces for bikes. She also hopes to have more prizes donated from local businesses and maybe have bike tune-ups the week before Bike to School Week so everyone’s bike is ready to go. Liz’s advice to other schools? Get the students involved in organizing and running Bike to School Week so they feel needed and wanted, and take ownershili>of the event.
Stay tuned for more profiles over the coming weeks and follow the links to register for Bike to School Week 2016.