Health and Safety


To see Mrs. Watson and K/1/2/3's original post...

Clear the Coast Presentation

Hello Mrs. Watson and K/1/2/3,

I found your post on pollution on our beaches both fascinating and disturbing. Where I live, the beach can be reached by a 15 minute walk or a short drive. While we don't have huge amounts of garbage washing up on beaches because of our distance from major cities we do still have a problem. Below is a photo I have taken along a track in my town. It would be a tragedy to lose such environmental richness and beauty due to a careless disposal of garbage.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

I read each comment your class members shared...

Sharon - Your suggestion is very wise. Even if we didn't drop rubbish we can help by picking it up.

Bronwen - Oil is a major problem if spilled into our oceans. I have seen seabirds and penguins covered in oil and washed up on beaches. We don't have otters hear but we do have seals facing the problems with nets and fishing line.

Brooklynn - Like the ocean's animals, we too wouldn't survive if we swallowed too much plastic. You are correct, we can help by picking up plastics we find on beaches.

Linden - You understand the danger of the plastic rings used to hold pop together. An animated film named "Happy Feet" showed a penguin with such rings around its neck. What a terrible thought, plastic making its way to Arctic and Antarctic waters.

May - I have found dead birds washed up on beaches covered in oil. Oil stops them from flying and, if swallowed, can poison animals.

Jacob - Very true. We never know what might happen if we carelessly throw rubbish into out opens or let it wash down drains and out to sea.

Lily - I remember scenes of the tsunami hitting the shores of Japan sweeping all before it. So much was washed out into ocean,

Koa - I find it annoying when I find garbage left on beaches by people too lazy to place it in bins.

Teagan -To an animal hungry for a jellyfish meal, plastic bags can easily be mistaken for food.

Kezra - Your comment is very detailed. I can see you recognise the dangers of plastic bags a 6 pack holders. On one of my walks along a beach, I once found a dead bird with a 6 pack holder around its neck and wondered if it has caused the bird's death. Perhaps the bird hadn't been able to swallow any food.

Jorja - Carelessly leaving traps around can be a death trap for animals. While we don't have much crab trapping, there are lobster traps in use so I hope people are careful with them.

Solomon - You are a responsible crab trap owner because you check your traps but it's sad you found a plastic bag inside. At least it hadn't been eaten by an animal.


While many ships travelling our oceans treat garbage responsibly, there are still many who dump the garbage overboard and add to garbage entering our oceans from drains, careless people, and even tsunamis such as the one that struck Japan. Those who know the oceans are aware of an environmental tragedy garbage has caused for the Pacific Ocean. It is know as Great Pacific garbage patch or Pacific trash vortex. Garbage has collected together because of the ocean currents but we aren't certain just how large it is but I suspect it is very large and still growing. Here is a Wikipedia link...

Great Pacific garbage patch

If we read your advice and act on it we can all make a difference. If we don't care, we risk losing many  animals...

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.




For their original post...

4KJ and 4KM Bike Education

Dear 4KJ and 4KM,

Bike Education is such an important subject. A number of times I had run classes at school or attended a police run bike education centre with my classes. While I tend to walk much more than ride now, I once regularly rode my bike to school. I even had a milk crate on my bike rack so I could carry a computer to and from school in the days when the school only had one computer for all classes to share.


I think the rules you have stated are very important…

1. You can ride on the footpath until you are 12 years old.

2. Ring your bike bell when approaching other riders or walkers.

3. Always ride on the left hand side of the road.

4. Wear bright coloured clothing when riding.

5. Wear a well-fitting helmet.


1.  As I am just a little over 12 (oh, wow, in 2014 I’ll be five times that age), I always ride along the roadside or along bicycle paths in our area. As an adult, I am expected to know the road rules and abide by them. This includes obeying signs, stopping for pedestrians and using hand signals to show drivers behind what I am doing.

2.  It is not only safer, it is courteous to ring your bell when coming up behind other walkers or riders. When startled by a bike suddenly appearing from behind, the person might step in front of the bike.

Bike Bell

3.  As I have to obey the road rules when riding, I always keep left and don’t ride between cars when they are stopped at traffic lights. If you asked your blogging friends from the US you’d find they learn to keep right as they ride on the other side of the road as does European but not British countries.

4.  When I sometimes see what some riders wear when training for cycling, they can be very bright in their special cycling clothes. I have never worn that sort of bright clothing as that might be too much of a shock for people I pass. 🙂 I do wear light coloured clothing and, if I have to walk along the roadside with my bike, I have a safety vest.

5.  Even before it was compulsory to wear helmets when riding, I did because I knew how important it was to protect our heads from harm. I have come off my bike at times and found the ground hard. Luckily I was never badly hurt.

My longest ride was quite a few years back when I caught a train from Sydney to Nowra in NSW then started riding my bicycle. On that trip, I had my tent and spare clothing, tyre repair kit and tools, drink and food in a backpack. My trip lasted five days as I rode nearly 300km. It was a wonderful experience but I always had to be very careful when riding along roads. I wasn’t in a hurry, it was something I wanted to experience. I would no longer try such a trip but I have memories of the people I met and talked to along the way

What is a road rule that you know? 

I hold three levels of driver’s licences for motorcycle, car and truck. I tried to apply all of the road rules when I rode my bikes. I am not happy when I see some cyclists cross pedestrian crossings when the lights are red for traffic or ride along footpaths when they are adults. It is not only dangerous, it gives good cyclists a bad name. One rule I never had to worry about when cycling was keep under the speed limit. My riding is more leisurely so my speed was never too high.

And now for something completely different...

In my collection of graphics gathered over many years I found one that made me wonder, if bicycles had been invented in the time of knights on horses, might a poorer knight have had to use a bicycle?

A couple cycling pictures for you...

Did you know some of the first bikes didn't have pedals?

People would sit on the seat and run along. Eventually people did think of pedals but early bikes didn't have chains and gears. The front wheel was very large and the rear small. The cyclists would push the bike to get it going, step up on a small step on the bike then up to the seat. They had to have a big front wheel so people's legs were able to pedal the bikes. These bikes were called penny farthing bikes. A penny was a big coin and a farthing was a small coin just as the penny farthing bikes had a big and small wheel.

Recently, my town celebrated it's 100th birthday as an official town. I saw some interesting bikes in the parade.

You can see a man riding a penny farthing bike. They boy is wheeling one they hope to restore.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The couple is riding a tandem bike. They were once quite popular with couples who would cycle together. While I don't have a photo, I have seen a bike built for four people to ride.Bike riding can be a great deal of fun but it's also a responsibility. We need to keep our bikes in good conditions, obey the rules and be safe.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Have fun in Bike Education. I know I always did. 🙂


Teacher, NSW, Australia