Friday, April 10, 2015

Can you really teach a child how to cycle in 30 min?

So D wanted to teach the children how to cycle. He thinks cycling (on two wheels) is important for the children since it's like the basic life skills like swimming.
(I don't know about that… I mean… it's not like the kids now need to cycle to school from now on...)

So since the Mr was free and we had some time in the evening a few days back, we decided to teach them how to cycle. But before any parent teaches their kids how to cycle, you need to do prep work first.

You need to get them a bicycle (given), remove their supporting wheels (if any) and also the pedals (Bet you didn't know that). Basically, you are stripping it until it becomes a balance bike.

After which, as any typical parent, we geared them up with their safety gear and off we went to the nearby park to cycle. The plan was simple. We bring them to a park, find a slope and let them balance as they come down the slope.. (At least that's what the video says…

But what the video didn't say is the ratio should be 1 adult to 1 child. (Maybe it's given but we didn't realize it) Also, always remember if you have fun coming down, it may not be the same going up. We chose a short slope initially but it was so short that before the kid can really get the feel they they were at the bottom of the slope already. So we progressed to a longer slope. Problem with that was while it was great to get them to balance, we needed to make countless trips up the slope (with their bikes) and down (to receive the kids).

The kids trying to balance...
After a while, we got tired so we just got them to balance on a straight path. If they reached a certain point, they will just turn back. (This reminds me of those silly gym classes we brought Audrey when she can't even walk.. And we had to go round the obstacles while carrying her… i mean how's that gym for her???? But yes that's one of those silly things I've subscribed to)

So did the kids managed to cycle? Julian was too scared to go down the slope, so he did better on the pavement, but still that was restricted mainly to just him "walking on wheels". Audrey managed to get a hang of balancing first. She had some points where she managed to cycle a little, but after awhile would lose her balance. Isaac could go as far as balancing but not yet on pedaling. So we spent 1 hr in the park and the kids still weren't able to cycle. (D and I were realistic about that)

Well, to be fair, if we wanted convenience we could spend $100/hr for each child to get a coach to teach them, but that would rob us of the chance of witnessing the kids' milestones. On hindsight, the journey of doing an activity with them was more meaningful than being efficient.

As you guys have read in his guest post, D had a period when he was ultra down. He sometimes wished that time could fast forward so that he gets over it soon. But he recognized that even at our down point, we have other things given to us which distract us from the pain we went through. If time really past quickly, these things would as well… and sometimes these other things bring more joy than the pain from the challenges.

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