Tour of California gets educational

In preparation for the 2007 Amgen Tour of California February 18-25, 2007, a specially developed classroom curriculum has been distributed to fourth- through sixth-grade instructors and students in the 650-mile race's twelve California host cities.

Through interactive lessons, the curriculum educates students about the history of cycling, and includes bike safety and maintenance tips. Provided to more than 200 schools, the booklet also provides information about the state of California, including targeted lesson plans that use cycling as a means to teach core subjects such as math, science and geography.

"Few childhood activities are as enjoyable and invigorating as riding a bicycle, and we want to use cycling as a platform for introducing the joys of outdoor recreation to young Californians," said Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. “This informative handbook can help make our kids safer, smarter and healthier."

"We saw such an enthusiastic response from the communities we visited during last year's Amgen Tour of California, particularly from the young people in the community," said Shawn Hunter, president, AEG Sports, presenters of the race. "Through this curriculum, we hope to engage young Californians and get them excited about cycling in an effort to educate them about the benefits of an active lifestyle, and ensure they have the necessary tools to develop healthy habits at a young age."

The informative lessons about team sports, the history of cycling and the geography of California, coupled with fun activities such as weather charting, crossword puzzles and word searches, allow educators to reach students with engaging materials developed specifically for their age group.

Some host cities are creating additional activities to augment the curriculum, including drawing, coloring and essay contests, as well as spirit and participation contests among local schools.

Host cities for the eight stages include: San Francisco, Sausalito, Santa Rosa, Sacramento, Stockton, San Jose, Seaside, San Luis Obispo, Solvang, Santa Barbara, Santa Clarita and Long Beach.

Cyclingnews will cover the Tour of California with daily race reports, photography, features and live Web and mobile Web text coverage.

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