On Tuesday, May 26th, a group of 23 young and eager students from the Canadian International School in Yelahanka visited the Traffic Management Center on Infantry Road. This was a workshop organized for them by Positive Strokes as part of their Contextual Learning Program.
After a short presentation to introduce the role of the Bangalore Traffic Police in maintaining the flow of traffic through the city and to Positive Strokes, the program that identifies and rewards good road users, the students watched a video highlighting good and bad road behaviors. They were then given a demo of the system at the Traffic Management Centre. There is something quite indescribable about the look of wonder on the students’ faces as they were led into the Traffic Control room and saw the video wall. They took to the Positive Strokes activity with the enthusiasm of children who were given a new video game to play with and they captured 17 unique good road users to reward in the span of about 45 to 60 minutes.
At the end of the activity the students discussed what some easy road rules were often being violated – stopping before the pedestrian crossing, wearing helmets and seat belts. When asked why they thought these rules were not being followed, they came up with some surprisingly empathetic thoughts – maybe the seat belts were not comfortable, maybe they did not have money to buy a helmet. Not surprisingly though, most felt that the reason people did not follow rules was because they were in a hurry.
The students were also asked what could be done to make people follow the particular rule that they thought was easy to follow. Interestingly, many of them responded with system/infrastructure changes – build dividers so that people stick to their side of the road, add signs to the roads, have a toll gate or railway gate like pole to stop people from getting on the zebra crossing, make cars that make it easy to follow rules. Most felt that making people pay fines would do the trick and some also said (and this is my favorite), rewarding people who did follow rules and giving them Positive Strokes would help. Yes, I’m a bit partial to this line of thought 🙂
One student’s answers to the discussion questions