Walk to School Day

Kids walking to school



International Walk to School Day is October 4th and it’s a good time for students to get great photos for their I Am Here entries! Do they have sidewalks to walk on? Are traffic crossings safe? Is their way littered, or clean? Do they pass grocery stores or fast food restaurants?

Title of Lesson: Walk to School Day

Grade Level: 3-8


Student Objective:

How walkable is my community? Using the short video and International Walk to School Day for inspiration, students will assess their neighborhood to see if it supports a healthy lifestyle. Classrooms will use their responses to help students organize and plan what photos to take for their I Am Here Youth Photo Contest submission.



  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.3-5.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.3-5.1 Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons and information.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.3-5.7 Conduct short research projects that build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.3-8.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.6-8.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.

Instructional Plan:

Before the walk

  • Introduce the I Am Here photo contest and show Reshaping Our Region: Kids Draw a Brighter Future video to give students a quick visual explanation.
  • Pass out the Walk to School Day Organizer and review with students what they will be looking for as they walk to or from school.
  • Review that students will be assigning scores to what they see as well as writing captions for any photos they take along the way.
  • Share the sample photos and captions (at the bottom of this page) with the class.
  • Brainstorm some possible sites to photograph along as they walk.
  • Have students keep their Walk to School Day Organizer to take with them while they walk.

During the walk

  • Students will complete the checklist, take photos, and write down captions as they walk to or from school on their Walk to School Day Organizer.
  • This can be done individually or in a group. Adults on the walk can help as well!

After the walk

  • Come together as a class to share scores, photos and captions.
  • Discuss as a class what students found in the neighborhood.
  • Teacher will use their responses to help students organize and plan what photos to take for their I Am Here Youth Photo Contest submission.
  • Submit the class’ favorite 5 positive photos and caption and favorite 5 negative photos and captions to the I Am Here Youth Photo Contest.

Sample Photos

Broken, overgrown sidewalk

“In my community the sidewalk is unsafe and unhealthy because it is fading and broken in places so it is hard for me to know where to walk.” – Academy for Integrated Arts, 3rd Grade Winner

Crossing guard holds stop sign

“My friendly crossing guard Ms. Giles is one good thing in my neighborhood. I appreciate her dedication. Without her stop sign it would be dangerous crossing five lanes of traffic on Paseo, so kids can get to school. Every day she meets us with her bright yellow vest and smile.” – Faxon Elementary, 6th Grade Winner













Get Full Contest Instructions


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