Each year, schools in Ontario celebrate International Walk to School Month (IWALK) and Winter Walk Day. At York Region District School Board, schools celebrate IWALK and Winter Walk Day with special events on IWALK Day (the first Wednesday of October) and Winter Walk Day (the first Wednesday of February) or anytime throughout the months.
There are many good reasons to walk to school. Walking to school:
- Keeps kids active - a cheap and easy way to stay active, with out any special training or equipment
- Builds friendships - walk with a classmate or schoolmate
- Improves air quality and the environment - less cars, less pollution
- Creates safer school routes/zones - less traffic means safer roads
- Helps prepare children for learning - movement gets the blood flowing to the brain
Walking is a great way to keep physically active and prepare students to learn. Whether students walk to school, or take a walk around the school grounds during the day, schools encourage all students to be physically active each day. Studies have shown that daily exercise improves both physical and mental health.
If you are a parent who drives your child to school, try parking your car safely a few blocks from school and walking with your child the rest of the way.
Bike to School Week is another annual celebration that takes place during the last week of May. Schools can participate in Bike to School Week by promoting and encouraging students to use biking and wheeling as a fun way to get to and from school and travel around their community.