The Movement

Children

Our children are commuters too. Their journey to school and college are commutes.

Some walk, some have those aluminium scooters,many, too many, in my opinion, are driven, some cycle, many get the bus, some get the train. 

What do they think about their commute? How do they feel about their journeys? How would they see their commute more as a holiday than a commute.

Peculiar idea? Maybe. By the time the younger children are working, if there are jobs, it may be the norm to work from home. But what of those who continue the tradition of a daily commute. It may interesting to collate some of their views in this community? Children can sometimes offer the most amazing insights into things we ponder and discuss for ages. 

Be wondeful if community members with kids and grandkids can see what they think and share?

edited on Feb 15, 2016 by Katie100

Janet Bradley Feb 15, 2016

interesting concept... I don't have children... but its good to consider the future now... some of the problems with infrastructure that we have now, is because we haven't looked to the future, and what future generations will want or need.
Personally, I would like to see more children walk, or for the ones that can't walk, the US school bus system works well.

Jennifer Moville Feb 15, 2016

I used to walk to school every morning - took me 30 minutes there and 30 minutes back - no school bus to bring and take me back as there werent many children in our area that went to that school the authorities said it wasnt viable - no fun walking all that way in the dark ..............or in the bad weather

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

I don't have children but I care deeply about the world I'm leaving for them. And I bang on so much about the bigger picture, not looking for the quick fix, developing long term strategies and it seemed to me that the 'beneficiaries' of that, if you will, would be our children. And we should never underestimate them or their input.

Janet Bradley Feb 15, 2016

Yes, I prefer to look at the bigger picture... most of the decisions we are now paying for were quick fixes, like putting a plaster on broken bone... not much cop, but it was what was available at the time!

Nicky Griffiths Feb 15, 2016

I will ask her next time I see her, but at the age of 4 she doesn't have a lot of experience yet. From next week she'll be walking to our local school instead of a bus journey to the other side of town, it may be that she prefers the bus!

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

Ah bless. You never know, kids say the strangest things sometimes.

Nicky Griffiths Feb 16, 2016

I just asked 4 year old Florence how she likes to travel to school, I'm afraid the answer was "Wearing my school clothes"!!

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Janet Bradley Feb 16, 2016

What a brilliant response!!!

Nicky Griffiths Feb 16, 2016

As Whizz said, they say the strangest things!

Gill Chedgey Feb 16, 2016

Thank you so much for asking. The concept development in children is fascinating and I think this response shows less concern for a journey than personal comfort for that journey. it also suggests the destination is of primary importance. School clothes for a journey to school.

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Nicky Griffiths Feb 16, 2016

I never thought of it that way!

Gill Chedgey Feb 17, 2016

3 year old Daisy would like to travel by horse because it is too crowded everywhere else. But if she couldn't do that she would like to walk because she can take her dogs too. :-)

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Nicky Griffiths Feb 17, 2016

How lovely, maybe the children of today will go back to the old way of doing things after all!

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Jennifer Moville Feb 15, 2016

I once knew a bus driver who said it was a nightmare these days to be a driver who took children on a school bus - they were misbehaved - stood on seats, threw rubbish and the language was terrible. I think school buses (for the sake of the driver and the wellbeing of the bus) should have a teacher from that school on it every trip - they could take turns to ensure the safety etc

Nicky Griffiths Feb 15, 2016

Yes, the drivers don't like doing schools, sometimes a policeman would be more appropriate to have on the bus (or a bouncer to throw the troublemakers off).

kate thacker Feb 15, 2016

yes ive heard some stories from those tht drive sceniors

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kate thacker Feb 15, 2016

I was reading a news story(cant find lik) that bosses are starting to try and get people into work instead of working from home again. not sure what the reason given now but I know it certainly something my dad is seeing. hes being asked to come in more.
I asked kiddie winks. apparently we should do sing songs. we should offer pizza. and leave notes at the end of the journey to help the next person smile. and colouring pages

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

That's really lovely. Leaving notes to make people smile is so simple yet how good would it make people feel?

kate thacker Feb 15, 2016

could be post it stations whre you grab a post it and take to wherever

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

I'm still cogitating in how such a lovely thing could be absorbed and made to work within the contexts of our briefs. I am, therefore, a cogitating old codger. ;-)

kate thacker Feb 15, 2016

I had to google cogitate!!:D and me too lol.such lovely things they need to be done don't they:)

Gill Chedgey Feb 16, 2016

Cogitate worked with codger! I liked the two words together. :-)

kate thacker Feb 16, 2016

love them together actually

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kate thacker Feb 15, 2016

ooh another one said that we should have kindness boxes. where we put both dreams or notes up or in a box and then people might be able to grant the wish:D
and have a box of kindness where lots and lots of people put kind words into a big box and then angry drivers or people on trains (transport) can take a little slip out the box and feel good again.awwww.i think if we were all children the worlds issues could be solved:D

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

Yes, children's suggestions have that idealistic innocence that we all seem to lose. :-( I want it back!!

Jade Hewlett Feb 15, 2016

I like your thinking here. I work with children and walk them from school to the after school club each day. The only time I remember them complaining is when it's raining and I get asked why we can't have a bus. Most of the time they amuse themselves on the journey by singing and chatting to friends. If I remember I will ask some of them tomorrow what they think as I think it would be interesting to know. I'm sure they'd have some good responses!

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

That would be great, thank you. I'm sure their responses will be in testing and possibly surprising.

Jade Hewlett Feb 15, 2016

I can imagine one of the children would improve there journey by riding a unicorn to school! We wrote a letter to Santa as a club at Christmas and that was what she wanted as she loves unicorns! I'll just have to wait and find out though, I'm sure they'll be surprising.

Jade Hewlett Feb 16, 2016

I have asked some Pre-School children this morning and most of them seem to like the journey to school. All of them were brought in the car but one of them said he would have preferred to walk or ride a bike as it would be fun and he'd be able to see more around him. Whilst some girls wouldn't want to walk as it would be too tiring and they wouldn't be able to have a drink (found this interesting as they're only three and I'd have thought they'd have wanted to be more active). They wanted to get to Pre-School quickly in a car so they could play with there friends and it could be better if they could have food and drink on the way. Another girl way a little frustrated this morning by the weather as the windows of the car were covered in ice and so she couldn't see out of the window until it had melted. The cutest answer was a boy who said he liked the journey in the car and it was fun because his mum was there. He'd make it more fun by having other family in the car too. I guess it shows that they're just happy with the basics, a good view, easy journey and good company. Will be interesting to know how it differs with the older children this afternoon.

Janet Bradley Feb 16, 2016

I think back fondly to my school days of walking to school....I have probably blotted out my actual feelings!!! I think it is great to actually ask and get such good responses.

Gill Chedgey Feb 16, 2016

Thank you so much for doing this. Fascinating. I wonder if the perception of potential tiredness was linked to not having a drink. Overall there's a simplicity and an acceptance with no real expectations.

Jade Hewlett Feb 16, 2016

I feel like as you say, they don't have a lot of expectations and likewise to us as adults they will never be truly happy with the commute as they'll always be something they want to improve even though it is really not necessary and the commute is probably not really as bad as any of us may think. The children always pick the good things to talk about but we tend to remember all the bad parts of journeys despite the majority of the time it's probably a perfectly acceptable journey. We just always want more than we can have!!

I asked the older children (up to 8yrs) this afternoon and surprisingly they had very similar views to the three and four year olds. They were all driven to school when asked whether they would rather go in a car like with there mum or dad or walk like they do to after school club they preferred the car as they could relax and have there things (toys) around them. They liked walking as it wasn't as rushed and they could take there time, but again like the pre-school children they were put off walking in case they got tired. They said they could improve walking by skipping but bags would slow them down. I guess this shows that, like us and suggesting carriages for every occasion, they want all of there things and the opportunities and distractions they provide around them so they don't have to think about the journey. We seem to be wanting to find ways to distract ourselves from the commute rather than concentrating on it and just getting on with it.
It was also mentioned that to make the joirney to school more fun that one would like televisions in the car like her friend so it would be like the cinema and another would like a hover board to get to school as it would do all the walking effort for her!

Gill Chedgey Feb 16, 2016

So fascinating and not so far removed from much of our thinking in this community! But of course, as you so rightly say, children pick on the good points.
Thank you again. Really appreciate your input.

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Fiona Boubert Feb 15, 2016

The bus route I use for my base office has a lot of schoolchildren commuters on it. This includes several private schools. On the whole the children are fairly well behaved. A lot of them read the Metro and discuss the news or look at their smartphones. Some of them like to sit together. I am sure if you asked them most would say that they would like another bus at the peak time as it gets very crowded and they have to squeeze through other travellers with their school bags including musical instruments and sports equipment. They would also probably like more storage for all their stuff. I suspect they might like a school children zone on the bus that was designated for them. To be honest you could probably run a designated school bus and fill it on that route. We get a number of students too but they tend to blend in with other commuters and most are reading notes or on their smartphones or tablets.
My son was a bus commuter to school and then switched to cycling. He is now at University in Cambridge and continues to cycle or walk. He has not bothered learning to drive yet as he has no need to.

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

I was interested in your son not yet bothering to learn to drive. My niece and nephew, both at uni, are the same. And I know of other young adults who aren't driving. But not so long ago it seemed as soon as they were old enough for a provisional licence it was driving lessons right away. It used t be a joke almost about the numbers of sixth formers who owned cars! I wonder how that mind set has changed? And why? And what implications for commuting and travelling? Is the slow start of a move away from the car generation?

Nicky Griffiths Feb 15, 2016

It may be the cost of the lessons/tests and knowing that their insurance would cost a lot more than a cheap car. They certainly need rich parents!

Gill Chedgey Feb 15, 2016

Yes, cost would be a factor, for sure. My niece and nephew have never cited that as their reason. They say there's no point at the moment. Interesting to see if any other reasons emerge.

Fiona Boubert Feb 16, 2016

Cost is definitely a factor for young people. Also more go into higher education now and have less funds. I think some young people are more aware of the green agenda too.

Gill Chedgey Feb 16, 2016

Yes, I was hoping environment played a part. Makes me hopeful for the future.

kate thacker Feb 16, 2016

cost. my brother just couldn't afford the lessons nor the final insurance if he passed.

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Neil Kennedy Feb 15, 2016

I see quite a lot of school children and students on my commute and I think on the whole they have a more relaxed attitude to commuting and seem in less of a hurry to get there or get stressed out about delays.

Nicky Griffiths Feb 16, 2016

Ha ha, yes you never see children hurrying to get to school!

Janet Bradley Feb 16, 2016

This has reminded me about a conversation I eavesdropped! I was listening to some students on a train the other week - they complained about their commute - they were travelling each day half hour by train each way, and it was killing them..... and they were saying how it was eating into their day... and they finished college at 1.30pm....... All I could think about, I wonder how they will cope when they go to work!

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Matt B Feb 16, 2016

Great theme! What are the pains and problems about getting kids to/from school and activities (for the parents and the kids) at the moment and how are you solving them?

Denise Bennett Feb 16, 2016

When I lived in Scotland, my daughter had a long journey to school, about 30 minutes by bus, I had to drive her over 2 miles to where she caught the bus. Then it was all free, I dread to think what it would cost now. My grand daughter had to get the coach too, but it stopped at the end of the track where she lived.

Jade Hewlett Feb 16, 2016

I don't have any children but by walking them from schools to the after school club each day I feel safety is a big issue. They are always encouraged to walk to and from school but with so much traffic around the school gates it's really not safe. The schools I pick up from there is a public and private school on the same road so it can be a nightmare as the roads are quite small considering the traffic and it's just outside of town. As we are in no hurry to get back we usually wait ten minutes until the traffic is considerably less but that shouldn't be necessary and there are still children who walk without an adult.

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Denise Bennett Feb 16, 2016

I used to walk to school, it was a long walk, but I could save 6 pence, so I walked. My son used to walk to school, I had no fears about safety in those days. Now when you drive past schools at around 3.30, the road is jam packed with cars, the parents feel unsafe to let their children walk just a little distance, which is so sad.

Nicky Griffiths Feb 16, 2016

Now there are safety issues around all of those cars around the schools.

Denise Bennett Feb 16, 2016

When I fostered children, and had to take them and pick them up from school, it was surprising how many men used to hang around the school gates.

Janet Bradley Feb 16, 2016

so true... if all walked, the safety would improve

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