John Calvin School Albany's stories

Rick Eikelboom

Hands Up Survey - Report

This morning our class could conduct another Hands Up Survey and here is a small report.

The year six class conducted the survey of the whole school but year 9 class was absent as they were on an excursion. Each class was surveyed and my group needed to complete the survey for the yrs 7, 8 and 10. That wasn't easy as they were a little scary.

Anyway we got all results and we added it to the template the teacher had up on his computer. We then submitted it and as class we looked at the results. We were a bit disappointed that many people came by car.

Then we compared the survey with the one we did in February this year and then we noticed that some students had made changes to the way they arrive at school. Overall the students who came on bike, scooted or skated went up from 11% to 14% and the kids who walked up from 1 student to 23 students. Although that was a big increase, it was mainly because today happened to be a Walking School Bus day, where 17 students walked to school as a group. That still meant that 5 extra students walked to school than in February.

To conclude we as school reduced the car and bus transport and increases in the biking. Our class aim for the rest of the year is to have more students participate in the Walking School Bus and also promote cycling to school. We do have a dress up your bike day planned but we'll leave that for another day.

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Rick Eikelboom

New inititive - Walking to School Bus.

This story is related to Run a Park and walk initiative - Term 4

For more information on how to do this, click here

Being a regional school several students reported that they found it hard to cycle or walk to school from home due to the distance. So after a class discussion of how to include more students in being active before school, and in particularly how they came to school, the year six class came up with an initiative to walk to school from a central point not too far from the school. The walking school bus idea was born and together with the teacher a plan was put into place to carry this out.

However, as it was a new experience, the class decided to limit the passengers for the first day to just the year six class and their siblings. A note went home and parents immediately supported the idea with calls to the teacher for additional parent walkers and supervisors.

The day chosen that suited most students was a Thursday, so last Thursday we congregated at the start point, the local sports centre. In total there were 21 students and 5 parents, and the teacher in charge (the bus driver).


Although the walk wasn't real long, probably 15 minutes, it was a great success and we look forward to expanding the number of students who can participate. The year six students are excited and several students really took leadership, also influencing their mums to come along.


We will continue the Walking School Bus till the end of the year and hopefully reinstate it in term one next year.

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Rick Eikelboom
John Calvin School Albany

Extra Teacher support and a busy term 4 to look forward to.

This story is related to Attend Professional Development

There are some exciting times ahead at our school with another teacher coming on board to support the current teachers in encouraging students to be active in the way they travel to school. We live in a beautiful country city with a good mix of quiet roads mixed with well-constructed bike paths and footpaths. Extra teacher and parent support is always encouraging and welcomed to run successful programs.

Following an invitation by the City of Albany, A teacher registered for a 'Cycling Australia teacher education course'. She completed pre readings and extensive workbook activities before the session, pumped up the tyres on her bike, and went to local centre where the course was delivered.

The day was intensive with a mixture of lectures/discussions and hands on activities. They worked hard and the group enjoyed a fun filled and educative day. The result was that now the school has an additional teacher with level 1 cycle coaching qualifications.

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The timing is perfect as we are looking forward to a very busy 4th term. The year sixes will be showing off their cycling skills as we will be cycling around Rottnest Island during our annual school camp week. As spring shows its beauty and the sun gives more warmth, it will encourage students to cycle and walk to school during the term.

Just recently, the school received a large stash of cycling accessories, thanks to Your Move, that will be used as gifts and encouragements for the students who put in good efforts in being active. A tally sheet will be filled in daily of those in our class who cycle , scoot or walk to school. A competition will also be run for the furthest distance cycled and walked.

Another competition will be run in conjunction with a fundraising activity for the Royal Flying Doctors. The students will be asked to dress up their bike in the theme of the Royal flying doctors. We look forward to organising and running the events and equally look forward to sharing our successes.

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Rick Eikelboom

Safe cycle routes to school

This story is related to Map the safe routes to school

For more information on how to do this, click here

In the last few health lessons, the yr 6 students have been challenged to find the safest way to get to and from school. This activity followed a bike education program called 'Lets Ride,' we completed late second term and into third term. With improved bike skills, it was time to investigate the safest route to school.

With the help of Google Maps, the students could see a birds eye view of the suburbs. They were challenged to come up with 2 possible routes and list the pros and cons of each route. The needed to look at the hazards they could pass and list these as possible dangers or unsafe areas that required extra attention when they pass it on their way to school.

With several options the students decided on the best and safest route, and used their map making skills to construct a map of the route they would take. The maps were completed and taken home to share with their families and in one case the student and siblings now take a safer route to school.

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It was a great activity that promotes safety for those who walk or cycle to school. The outcome was achieved and we pray that all students are safe while they walk or cycle to school.

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Rick Eikelboom

Completing a bike education course

This story is related to Bike Education sessions

It all began in term 2 with a class of 21 students undertaking a bike education course. We were following a "Let's Ride" program, a program set up to teach students the basics to riding safely in both safe and protected environments as well as exposure to riding on quiet suburban roads.

The course started with the compulsory bike safety check, followed by a demonstration of how to correctly put a helmet on. Surprisingly many adjustment were needed to be made, however I feel that the activity taught the students that wearing a helmet safely is important to their safety. the following weeks were used to teach skills like bike balance, bike control, completing u-turns, correct hand signals, looking out for traffic, correct positioning on the road etc. Of note was the special needs student who was given a differentiated teaching program, where she learnt skills according to her ability. Seeing her learn braking, balancing a bike and riding in a straight line was special to witness.


These lessons culminated to an excursion where we cycled our way around the suburbs of Albany , and had lunch at a local park. We all enjoyed a sunny and educational day out where the skills we were taught were put on display. We were able to cycle some quiet roads as well as some tracks. Lots of exploring!


Since the 'Let's Ride' program was delivered, several students and now allowed to cycle to school on a regular basis with their siblings and friends. The bike rack is regulary filled with bikes and as the warmer months come we expect to see more and more.

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Rick Eikelboom

Cycle to School 2019

This story is related to Sucsess - Cycle to School day 2018

Waking up this morning we listened for any signs of rain on our roof or wind. No! That's great, as this morning the school held our annual cycle to school day. It was a week later than the intended day we had hoped to have it, but the excitement in our class and around the school was that it didn't matter which week we were having it. What was important was that we are having it and a nice breakfast was waiting at school to be devoured.


The year 10 students, along with some teachers and parents, were at school early making pancakes, cutting up fruit and cooking the not so healthy but yummy bacon and eggs. From about 7am students and parents began arriving at school. We even has a student in our class so keen he arrived at his friends house at 5.40am, and woke his friend up. They got ready and cycled to school via a few tracks to kill some time. Well done boys!


At 7:45am a teacher welcomed everyone to the school and we then all enjoyed a nice relaxing breakfast while many parents and grand parents enjoyed some good social time, catching up with other parents.


In total 180 students and parents cycled to school while another 14 walked. A great result considering many students usually come by car. This morning only 49 students came by car, and not all those students came for breakfast.


Our teacher and a year 10 student took photos of the event and again this morning will be a memory that will remain with us as a great Cycle to School event. As class we are making a committment to cycle or walk more to school and by the end of the year we hope to achieve this goal. By the year sixes.

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Rick Eikelboom

Term finishes with prize givaways

This story is related to Run an active transport challenge

After a very big drive to encourage the students to cycle to school, the year six class has come up trumps. The challenge was set at the beginning of week 3 of 4th term, a challenge to change habits in how they came to school. Cycling was promoted and a record sheet was designed and made by some student for them to mark the days they cycled, scooted or walked to school.

Today we came to the end of the challenge and a collective total of 282 day were recorded by the 16 students in year six. WOW, an average of nearly 18 days each. 5 students cycled a total of 31 or more days out of a possible 33 school days, days we were at school after the challenge started. One student managed 32 days. These students were relatively close to school, within a 5km radius, while other students made great efforts and arrangements to be dropped off at a friends place as they lived out of town on farms.

Earlier this term the school was gifted a 'Bike Promotion Package Voucher' from the Department of Transport, with the voucher spent buying bike related accessories from Passmore Cycles. As rewards the students were able to choose a prize for their outstanding commitment to change travel habits, choosing a healthier way to get to school. prizes included speedometers, lights, pedals, floor pumps, tools, riding gloves, drink bottles, bike cleaners and hand grips. Below are the happy students with their rewards. Thanks to Your Moves for the initiatives and we look forward to continuing next year with healthy habits.


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Rick Eikelboom

Event Success! Dress up your bike day.

Following on from our damp day yesterday, where the year six class conducted a end of year survey, the dampness continued with several good downpours (most welcome here in Albany as it's been a very dry winter and farmers need rain). However the enthusiasm wasn't dampened as many excited students arrived at school with their bikes decorated.

Many students arrived, even some with their parents... and about 30 students had their bike decorated.

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At recess we had a class by class procession and the teachers judged a winner from each class. HARD, very hard to judge and this resulted in several classes having joint winners. Unfortunately there were some sad students, a reflection of the hard work they all put into decorating their bikes.

The winners were paraded and an overall winner was chosen by loudest cheer from the entire primary school student body. After this the winners were able to choose a prize from merchandise received from Your Move. A big thank you to this great initiative to encourage Active travel to school.


Dress up your bike day was a success, however as this was the first time the students had seen an activity like this, next years dress up you bike day will be huge! so the students told me :)

We look forward to a bigger and better year in 2019 with even more active initiatives planned. Wishing everyone a safe, active and healthy holiday period.

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Rick Eikelboom

End of year survey

Today was chosen to conduct the end of year survey as the end in neigh for the upper grade. However the weather turned a little against us and a forecast thunderstorm prevented some from coming on bike, scoot or walk.

However after conducting the survey, the results weren't too bad with a comparison to the beginning of the year survey showing an increase in cycling (from 17% to 26%) and a small increase in walking.

A great result was the decrease in travelling to school by car (73% to 64%) translating to 29 students choosing an alternative means of transport.

The year six class is to be congratulated with figures showing that 9 students out of the class of 14, cycled today. Well done year 6's. We all look forward to keeping up our new habits and increasing awareness in the new year.

Wishing everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday break.

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Rick Eikelboom

Active Travel Week - Fun days planned.

For more information on how to do this, click here

As the school year comes to an end and the weather warms up, we thought it would be a good idea to have a Active Travel Week. The year 6 class had just completed a Digital Technology project where they collected data, represented it and interpreted it, informing them of choices students make in a range of different topics

To consolidate the activity, we decided to promote active travel and at the end of the week we will conduct another survey, our end of year 'Hands up Survey'. The year six class will conduct the survey and compare the results to those earlier in the year.

In addition we decided to have some additional funb, so we have promoted Friday as 'Dress up your bike day.' an advertisement was made and published in the weekly newsletter, and promoted at the school assembly on Monday morning. There is a lot of excitement and we look forward to Friday. There will be prises awarded, prizes obtained from the 'Bike Promotion Package' we received from YOUR MOVE, and additional gifts we ought with the points we accrued during the year.

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Rick Eikelboom

Collection of Bike Promotion gifts

Excitement abounded in the class as I walked in looking like Father Christmas. A large bag full of goodies and two floor pumps under my arms.

The class was not sure what was going on but I soon told them the reason of the packages. The school qualified and received a Silver Status for stories submitted on the Your Move web page, thus enabling me to choose a package. I chose the Bike promotion package. With super correspondence with Carol-Ann from Your Moves, I was able to support a local bike store, Passmore Cycles, who put a package of gifts together that will now be used as rewards for those who, after encouragement, will endeavour to cycle, scoot or walk to school more than they have been.

The rewards were displayed to the class and as expected they were all excited and started working out ways that their mode of transport to school would change. The gifts included: wireless bike computers, riding gloves, MTB pedals, pumps, hand grips and bike cleaners. Passmore Cycles delivered a great package and we hope the encouragement to cycle to school will pay off. A chart is being made to record the activity for the rest of the term.

Thanks to the Department of Transport and the Your Move team. Here is a picture of the rewards with two excited class members.


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Rick Eikelboom

A fantastic finish to Bike Education lessons

After several years of using the 'Let's Ride' program, and with many resources built up, it was decided to run the program this year independent of that great program. We still used a qualified teacher with cycle coaching accreditation, and ran the course for 6 weeks this term. The class was a year 6 class with 16 students, who had different degrees of experience and confidence in bike riding.

Several students already regularly rode to school with their parents or siblings and displayed great confidence and knowledge of road awareness. Others however were very tentative and the challenge lay ahead.

The lessons followed the same development plan of the previous program and for some students balance was the biggest challenge. However the challenges were overcome and so the time came to practice these skills on the quiet roads around the school. Three parents were willing to help and so groups of 4 students with a teacher and helper ventured out on the roads to show what they had learnt. The whole class passed the test with flying colours, and just in time for our 'Bike Ed Excursion.'

This is an event we have every year at the completion of the unit of study, where we take a whole day and cycle the quiet streets and paths around our beautiful city of Albany. The city of Albany promotes and supports cyclists around the city and so we had a great day, with a BBQ lunch at a park near the beach.

Due to the sometimes fickle weather in Albany, the day needed to be posponed, however the alternative day was just perfect. Clear sunny skies, no wind and we set off in our separate groups. During the day the groups travelled different routes, and although there was one mechanical incident, where a bike rear derailer broke when a stick got caught in it, it was just the best day. each group cycled around 33km on quiet roads, shared bike paths, up mountains, up and down steep hills. An icecream finished off the day and we all had a great day out. All the students displayed good skills and are more confident to cycle independently.

A quick survey of the class and an extra 3 students now cycle to school with confidence. The support from the school and parents is always good and we hope to keep promoting cycling as a good alternative is getting to school.


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Rick Eikelboom

Success - Cycle to School day 2018 (1)

This story is related to Sucsess - Cycle to School day 2018

With a quick peek outside early this morning I was a little optimistic at how the morning would unfold. It was drizzling and the forecast wasn't looking particularly dry for the morning. However plans had been made for our Cycle2School breakfast.


Despite the damp conditions the school was a hive of activity and the older students at the school were cranking up the BBQ's, the frypans were sizzling and the fruit was being cut up.


A steady stream of students and parents began to arrive, many wet right through. Despite this we had an official opening and then it was on! Pancakes, bacon and egg sandwiches, fruit, milk and juice was bought and devoured. As school we decided to combine the Cycle2School day with a fund raising event; money being raised for the Cancer Council of WA.


The important stat for the morning was that out of 203 students at school today, 164 students either cycled, walked of came on their scooters. WOW! The rain didn't deter anyone and the support from parents was equally impressing with about 40 adults cycling of walking to school. A big thank you to the year 10 leaders and the teachers who helped.


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Rick Eikelboom

Excited kids - Road and Safety program

This story is related to Write your first story

This morning I could witness many bikes on the footpaths; their destination our school. Why? Well 3 classes were going to participate in a Road and safety program, run by the City of Albany, on behalf of Your Move and funding from RAC WA.

The years 4 to 6 students were introduced to the two presenters, Caleb and Matt, who were 2 energetic and passionate bike riders. The 3 classes had sessions at different times which lasted for about 1 and a quarter hours.

Starting the sessions the children were taught basic but important road and bike safety. We started with fitting our helmets, followed by a bike safety check, where many children made small adjustments to their bikes, particularly the height of their seats. This followed with important things we need to remember whilst on our bikes with hand signalling an activity we completed. Throughout the session the children learnt about bike balance, braking, respecting other road users and correct riding positioning. Each teaching lesson was followed with an activity on the bike resulting in a very engaging session. Thanks to Matt and Caleb, as well as the City of Albany for providing these lessons. We hope the children will practice these skills and no better time will be tomorrow when the school is holding a cycle to school breakfast. Pancakes Yummm!


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A k to 10 private Christian school with an enrolment of 220 students


9 Beaufort Road

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Organisation start date 5/02/18
Points earned this year: 0 Lifetime points total: 1126
Highest accreditation achieved: 2019 Silver
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