Thursday, February 28, 2013

Bikes in Kindergarten

Under the leadership of the room mothers the class made a book about their favorite things about kindergarten. It's a fantastic book and it will be up for bid at the silent auction on Pasta Night coming this Saturday.

We'll make a chart tomorrow to see the results, but a first look at this book left me with a strong impression that bicycles are a favorite part of the week for our kindergarten students. Many mentioned bikes as being their favorite thing about kindergarten.

I think it is unusual for a kindergarten class to have as many two-wheelers as we do here. Sometimes people will ask me how it is that I got so many bicycles. When I arrived here in 1981 kindergarten had no bicycles nor tricycles. It took me a couple of years to get the first trikes for kindergarten. Ten years later when my daughter outgrew her first bicycle, (a red Giant Animator) I brought it to kindergarten. You should have seen the eyebrows go up! "Bicycles are too dangerous!" I was told, but with the promise to review their use after several broken bones, I got to keep it.

Since that time, 1995 or so, there have been a number of bones broken, but none of them have involved bicycles. In almost twenty years of five and six year olds riding bikes we haven't had any serious injuries—nothing more than just the same sort of scrapes and bumps that kids get from falling while running across the playground.

After that first bike I decided we needed more so I set aside $75 of my own money and bought three similar bikes at thrift stores. Those original four bicycles were the seed for donations from families outgrowing bicycles. Bikes have come in steadily since that time.

Today William Z's family donated a fine new bicycle to add to the fleet of smaller bikes for riders who are just starting out. Thank you, William & family.

Because of the popularity of bicycles, I contributed a framed original drawing (at the top of this post) of my playground bike for the silent auction at the pasta night event coming up the day after tomorrow.

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