Parental engagement session graduates 10 from trainers to freewheeling
SUMMERSIDE – Greenfield Elementary Home and School Association hosted another successful parent engagement session on Saturday, this time teaching bicycle riding in two easy steps
© MICHAEL NESBITT / JOURNAL PIONEER
Ken Trenholm trained Andrew Stordy, left, Ayden Campbell and eight other young cyclists to ride freely on two wheels Saturday at Greenfield Elementary School. MICHAEL NESBITT / JOURNAL PIONEER
While the session was open to the public, this day belonged to the kids who were mostly sidewalk riders in the training wheel stage.
“I have a sincere joy when they arrive with training wheels and a little nervous, and then leave without training wheels and a whole bunch of happy,” noted trainer Ken Trenholm in a social media post after the event.
His training method is simple: take the pedals off and lower the seat enough for the riders to run themselves up to coasting speed, then lift the feet and try to coast for 10 seconds at a time, aiming for an increase of 10 each try.
Trenholm often skipped a few counts in his effort to have the children feel successful with their efforts, but the technique works.
Once the novice riders have achieved 30 or 40 seconds balancing through clear coasting, the pedals are put back on the bike and the challenge starts again.
“I did it! I’m riding two wheels,” shouted Lydia Walker as she pedaled her way around the cars in the parking lot.
The kids can get excited, however, and override the safe limits. Lydia did ride out of sight of the parents on the other side of the cars. She stayed upright, though she was reminded of the danger of being out of sight if she fell.
I did it! I’m riding two wheels Lydia Walker -novice cyclist at Learn to Ride a Two-Wheel Bike session at Greenfield School
Trenholm trained 10 at the session, increasing his total to 138 riders through this two-stage, balance first – pedals second method.
The next engagement session at Greenfield School is a Literacy Fair, on Saturday, May 24, starting at 10 a.m. Participants can buy books at a Scholastic Book table and engage activities at stations for bookmarks, colouring, book worms sold by Grade 6 students, face painting, letter and word bingos, reading and story corners, a puppet show, games, orffestration which combines reading with music, and more.
The Journal Pioneer Literacy Fund has provided 60 certificates for books at the fair, as prizes during the event, so Greenfield students are encouraged to bring thier extended families for a day of engagement in education.