• Activity
  • Passenger Safety

Being a responsible bus passenger

Learning areas:
  • Health & Physical Education
Year levels:
  • Prep
  • Year 1
  • Year 2

Discuss the rules for travelling safely on a bus. Create a list of safety rules for bus travel (see the information section below for ideas).

Set out chairs in a bus-like formation in the classroom and select one student to act as the driver and others to be passengers.

Discuss and demonstrate what to do at the stop:

  • Where to wait in relation to the road.
  • How to wait safely.

Discuss and demonstrate what to do on the bus:

  • Locate a seat and sit down.
  • What to do when no seat is available.
  • Where to store bags.
  • Waiting until the bus is stopped before standing up.
  • Using seat belts when they are available.

Discuss and demonstrate getting off the bus:

  • Where to stand so that you are away from traffic.
  • The importance of waiting until the bus has moved away so that you can clearly see traffic in all directions.
  • Crossing a road after the bus has left (use a crossing if one is available).

Have students role-play getting on, sitting down, standing up and getting off the bus in a safe manner.

If possible, arrange to practice these procedures on a real bus.

Discuss the possible consequences of ignoring the bus safety rules. Make a class display headed “We are safe passengers when…..” and record students’ responses to the question.

Discussion questions

  • Why should we wait for a bus to drive off before crossing the road?
  • Why is it important to stand well back from the road when we are waiting for the bus?
  • What might happen if we ignored the bus safety rules?

Information for teachers

Important safety concerns for children include:

  • crossing roads immediately in front of, or behind, the bus after getting off
  • crossing before the bus has moved well away from the bus stop
  • being distracted around bus stops by mobile phones, music players and other children.
  • Never cross the road in front of, or behind, the bus.
  • Stay well back from the edge of the road, move on to a footpath if there is one, and wait for the bus to leave.
  • Cross the road once the school bus has gone and there is a clear view of the road in both directions.
  • Never wear earphones or talk on a mobile phone when trying to cross the road. Children may not notice approaching traffic.
  • Look in all directions for approaching traffic – right and left and behind if they are crossing at an intersection.*
  • Only cross where drivers have a clear view of pedestrians.

Rules for getting off the bus:

*It is important for children to understand that vehicles may be travelling at high speed and therefore take longer to stop. Children, especially younger children, may not be very good at judging the speed and distance of approaching traffic.

Rules for waiting for the bus

  • No pushing, running or playing around.
  • Stand well clear of the road – away from the kerb and on the footpath if there is one.
  • Stand well back from the kerb or the edge of the road.
  • Allow plenty of time to get to the bus stop.
  • If the bus is late, remain at the bus stop until it arrives.
  • Wait for the bus to stop completely before they approach it. They can use the handrail to help them on board and should take care when climbing any steps.

Rules for travelling on the bus

  • Stay seated, where a seat is available, and use seat belts if they are fitted.
  • Bus aisles must be kept clear of bags.
  • Do not distract the driver.
  • Say seated until the bus has completely stopped.
  • Do not rush to get off the bus.

Victorian curriculum

Health and PE


Identify people and actions that help keep themselves safe and healthy (VCHPEP059)

Identify actions that promote health, safety and wellbeing (VCHPEP062)

Level 1 & 2

Recognise situations and opportunities to promote their own health, safety and wellbeing (VCHPEP074)