Monday, 5 October 2015

The Green Cross Code

With Keira doing her cycling proficiency course at school and learning about Bike Safety it got me thinking about The Green Cross Code and it occurred to me that I have never actually taught the children the code and just assumed they had learnt it by watching me, I know bad mum moment eek but it is definitely one of those things we (I) take for granted and forget that it has to be taught and isn't one of those things you just know!

So do you know the green cross code? Yes we all 'know' how to cross a road but do you know the actual green cross code?! I'll admit that I didn't so if like me you need a quick refresher here is The Green Cross Code taken from the Think! Education website..

The Green Cross Code

1. First find the safest place to cross
  • If possible, cross the road at: subways, footbridges, islands, zebra, puffin, pelican or toucan crossings, or where there is a crossing point controlled by a police officer, a school crossing patrol or a traffic warden.
  • Otherwise, choose a place where you can see clearly in all directions, and where drivers can see you.
  • Try to avoid crossing between parked cars and on sharp bends or close to the top of a hill. Move to a space where drivers and riders can see you clearly.
  • There should be space to reach the pavement on the other side. 
2. Stop just before you get to the kerb
  • Do not get too close to the traffic. If there is no pavement, keep back from the edge of the road but make sure you can still see approaching traffic.
  • Give yourself lots of time to have a good look all around.
3. Look all around for traffic and listen
  • Look all around for traffic and listen.
  • Look in every direction.
  • Listen carefully because you can sometimes hear traffic before you can see it.
4. If traffic is coming, let it pass
  • Look all around again and listen.
  • Do not cross until there is a safe gap in the traffic and you are certain that there is plenty of time.
  • Remember, even if traffic is a long way off, it may be approaching very quickly.
5. When it is safe, go straight across the road – do not run
  • Keep looking and listening for traffic while you cross, in case there is any traffic you did not see, or in case other traffic appears suddenly. 
  • Look out for cyclists and motorcyclists traveling between lanes of traffic. 
  • Do not cross diagonally.
How you can help your child and other children
  • Set a good example. Use the Green Cross Code yourself.
  • Show your child how to use the Code to cross the road when you’re out and about.
  • Let your child show you that they know how to cross the road safely – start practising on quiet roads first.
  • Point out dangerous places to cross on local roads. Point out safer places as well. Some places may be safer at some times of the day than at others.
  • Use pedestrian crossings even if it involves a small detour.
  • Talk about the importance of not using a mobile phone or texting while crossing the road.
  • Remind your child that they cannot hear traffic if listening to music through earphones or see it properly if wearing a large hood.
But let’s get one thing clear: it’s still important for children to be outside.
Walking is good for children's health and fitness and we support parents who encourage their children to walk as much as possible. Taking your child in the car for short journeys puts more traffic on the road and adds to the problem.
Children can be safer on the streets if we show them how.
Crossing between parked cars
Try not to cross between parked vehicles, but if there is nowhere else to cross:
  • Choose a place where there is a space between two cars and make sure that it is easy to get to the pavement on the other side of the road.
  • Make sure neither car is about to move off - look for drivers in the cars, lights and listen for engines.
  • Don't cross near large vehicles. You could be standing in a blind spot, where the driver cannot see you.
  • Walk to the outside edge of the cars and stop. Here you can be seen by drivers and you can look all around for traffic.
  • Use the Green Cross Code. When the road is clear, cross, still looking and listening as you go.
An easier way to remember it and teach it to children..


  • Find the safest place to cross then stop.
  • Stand on the pavement near the kerb or the edge if there is no kerb.


  • Give yourself lots of time to have a good look all around.
  • Make sure you can see if anything is coming and drivers can see you.


  • Listen carefully because you can sometimes hear traffic before you can see it.
  • Never cross the road whilst chatting to people, listening to your iPod or talking on your mobile phone.

When it is safe to cross, walk straight across the road. Do not walk diagonally. Keep looking and listening for traffic while you cross.

Info taken from which also has some great games for children about road safety


  1. So many rules I had forgotten there! Thankfully my children's nursery schools drummed it into them, and I was often reminded of lots of the rules by them on many occasions! :D

  2. There is so much to remember isn't there? Especially when you see it written out like this x

  3. My kids have been learning this at school, I knew a lady that got run over with her son so I am always drumming road safety into mine, terrifies me as we walk by a very busy road on the way to school x

  4. My kids have been getting this at nursery and school and we also make sure they are careful when crossing the road with us.
    I have seen so many children just run across the road without looking and it scares me

  5. It's something I've kind of taken for granted too and have only started making a big deal of recently.

  6. We always walk to school so I've drummed it into the kids from an early age and keep repeating it.
    I want to look into cycling proficiency. What age do they usually start?

  7. My boys are taught the green cross code atr school and I was so paranoid about crossing roads that I drummed it into them

  8. I still go by the green cross code but the school have added think on the end which is a good addition too

  9. Makes me think of school. So handy to be reminded, my son will need this in a few years so I will save this - thank you.

  10. Great post! Always great to remind yourself of the basics as well as the children.

  11. We had so many safety videos when we were kids - they dont seem to do them so much these days do they? Tufty the squirrel, and Charlie the Cat and the Green Cross Code Man - I remember them all well!

  12. I remember The Tufty Club from my own school days and even though they don't teach this anymore for road safety, I have taught my kids about it! They think I bang on about my childhood a bit, but at least they are getting the safety messages!!

  13. Being the old gal that I am and having been brought up with the green cross man etc I'm A rule queen with my girls and road crossing. They've had this drilled into them since they could toddle and I still remind them every time we get to a road ... they still do silly thing though!

  14. We had a fatal accident in town just last week, so tragic and I have sworn to myself to reinforce with Emma the rules about crossing safely, so, so important, at every age!xx

  15. I had no idea there was so much to the Green Cross Code. Roads terrify me, I'll use this to talk to mine about them again.

  16. This is such a useful post as we're trying to teach POD about road safety. She's lots to learn still although she's not 5 yet :)

  17. ha yeah i failed mine oh dear good advice i miss those hedgehog adverts.

  18. So many specifics I hadn't forgotten there. A really good reminder of the importance of the Green Cross Code!