Walking and Riding Activities

There are a range of simple ways that you can include walking and riding experiences for children regularly at your service. Here are some unstructured and structured activities that you can try at your service.

Walking and Riding Activities printable version

Simple, everyday activities

For unstructured, everyday activities consider:

  • Letting children help set up everyday activities that involve walking e.g. taking toys to the sandpit, setting the tables for morning tea, walking with an educator to the office, kitchen or mail box.
  • Setting up a shop. Have small trolleys or baskets for children to walk around with and select items. Have some bags available so children can carry the bags ‘home’.
  • Attach small baskets to the front of bikes at your service. Children may enjoy transporting things around.
  • Bring bikes and wheeled equipment indoors for a change. Move furniture back and allow small numbers of children to enjoy riding in a different environment.
  • Have discussions with children about different aspects of road safety; pedestrian safety, passenger safety and safe play near roads.

Ideas for babies

Babies 0-12 months need opportunities for movement where they can develop reaching, rolling, sitting, crawling, pulling up and eventually walking skills.


  • Tummy time:  Before being able to walk babies love tummy time on a rug or mat where they are encouraged to lift their heads up, to reach, roll and crawl. Provide plenty of stimulating toys that babies can reach for when enjoying tummy time.
  • Up, up, up: Help older babies develop the necessary skills they will need for walking such as balance. Provide plenty of opportunities for babies to pull them selves up such as sturdy furniture, dense cushions or specialised mats. Place toys on these objects so babies are encouraged to pull themselves up. and reach.
  • Cruising: Provide wheeled toys that babies can sit on and cruise along. Help younger babies with their balance by supporting them. Older babies may be able to use their legs to push themselves along.
  • Walking and wheeling: Once older babies are able to stand and walk, provide equipment that will enable baby to maintain balance such as trolleys and pushers. Ones with baskets on the front are great for baby to learn to balance while bending and putting objects in.

Walking and riding rhymes

Traffic Light rhyme

Red says stop (hold up hand in stop motion)
Green says go (arm in go or come motion)
Yellow say wait (index finger up)
You’d better go slow (creep forward slowly)
When I reach a crossing place (cross arms at wrist)
To the left and right I turn my face (turn head left and right)
I walk, not run across the street (walk forward)
And use my head to guide my feet (look down and point to feet)

Holding hands (to the tune of ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Start’)

When your walking down the street
Say “hello” to friends you meet.
Let them see how safe you are
Holding hands with Gran and Pa
And with Mummy and Daddy too
And with adults bigger than you.

Ride your bike (to the tune of ‘Row, row, row your boat’)

Ride, ride, ride your bike
Up the muddy lane.
Bumpity, bumpity, bumpity, bumpity,
Ride it back again.

Ride, ride, ride your bike
Slowly down the street,
Bumpity, bumpity, bumpity, bumpity,
Stop with your feet.

Ride, ride, ride your bike
Through the long grass.
Swish, swash, swish, swash
Aren’t you going fast.

These ‘Walking and riding rhymes’ are adapted from the Starting Out safely resource (Vic Roads 2002).

Clue card walking course

What you will need:

  • A large space with different levels/terrain
  • Paper/cardboard (for arrows and stop signs clue cards)

What to do:

  • In an indoor or outdoor space plan a walking course
  • Cut out some arrows and stick them on the ground to show the walking direction.
  • Print and cut out some stop sign cards and write a clue on the back about something that is on the course e.g. a slide ‘I am big and yellow and you can go fast on me’. Hang or stick clue cards along the course.
  • Make sure the walking course is challenging for the children. Depending on the children’s age consider including stairs, slopes, uneven surfaces and a section where children can step, leap, jump or crawl.
  • Ask the children to form a group and follow you (or a selected leader) around the course. As you pass different terrain talk about how the body has to do different movements such as stepping up, using arms to balance, leaping etc.
  • Ask children to keep their eyes out for the stop sign clue cards. When children see a card read the clue out and ask children to guess what it might be. Once a correct guess is given continue on the course.

Ride and roll track

What you will need:

  • A selection of bikes, tricycles or scooters
  • A large outdoor space or indoor, space free of hazards
  • A range of props (things to resemble traffic lights, signs, traffic guard equipment)
  • Chalk or masking tape

What to do:

  • Set up a riding course that children can enjoy either outdoors or indoors.
  • Mark the surface with chalk or cones/markers (outdoors) or masking tape (indoors). These markings should resemble a road. Consider corners, intersections and footpaths.
  • Use some different props for road objects (consider making these as an activity with the children e.g. card board boxes, paint and sticky tape to make traffic lights).
  • Add bikes to the track and select a small number of children to have a go. Whilst watching these children talk with the rest of the group about some road rules.
  • If the track is popular set  up a roster system so all children get a turn.

Let’s get out – community walk

What you will need:

  • A safe walking route
  • Equipment your service usually takes on excursions

What to do:

  • Plan a walk around your services community. You and other staff may consider doing an audit of the route and testing it out to make sure it is safe.
  • Try to select a walking route that includes a park, play space or area where children can stop and have a play.
  • Make parents aware of the walk and invite them to join the group.
  • Prior to commencing the walk talk with the children about some of the road and pedestrian rules.
  • During the walk remind children of these road and pedestrian rules.
  • Run these community walks on a weekly or monthly basis to help children establish some road sense and encourage children to become aware of the local community. Consider using a community walk to work towards achieving the Stride and Ride criterion!
  • Remember to carefully consider safety aspects in accordance with your services policies and procedures.