Monday, November 14, 2011

Training Teachers Helps Safe Routes Philly Broaden Its Reach

Our Safe Routes Philly program promotes walking and biking as fun, healthy forms of transportation in Philadelphia's elementary schools. While we hold some school assemblies, we work primarily on a train-the-trainer model, providing teachers with free lessons, training, and resources. Training teachers to implement our pedestrian and bicycling safety lessons multiplies the impact our Community Representatives have in Philadelphia schools, creating a sustainable program and reaching more students without our direct involvement.

One of the most effective ways to get our programming into teachers' hands is through professional development workshops. Bringing teachers together with our Community Representatives allows teachers to ask questions, learn about our programming in a collaborative environment, and see how Safe Routes Philly fits into their respective classroom or gym.

Last year we held 7 professional development events in cooperation with the School District of Philadelphia. Last week, we held our first one of this academic year at Northeast High School during the School District of Philadelphia's Health and PE in-service day.

Megan Rosenbach leads a workshop on running a bicycle safety lesson
We ran two one-hour workshops, in which a combined total of 31 teachers participated. Megan Rosenbach, one of our Community Representatives, led the participating teachers through the PE lesson plans we've developed for teaching pedestrian safety (2nd grade) and bicycling safety (5th grade). Some teachers had already taught our lessons this year, while others had not heard of our program and came away with new lessons and materials. In all, it was an extremely effective morning, providing resources and training to 31 teachers who are now equipped to bring valuable pedestrian and bicycling safety lessons directly to their students.

If you would like to learn more about our Safe Routes Philly program, contact a Community Representative.