The success of the program inspired me to write a post about how riding a bike with your kids to school can be such a good thing! Two summers ago, my husband and I made it our mission to encourage our eldest to learn to ride on her own so that she could ride to school when she started kindergarten. It was a slow process, and I will admit that the first couple weeks of school, we didn't ride every day. But one year later, it's almost like we feel guilty when we don't ride to school! We are very lucky in that we live 0.5 kms away from Coralie's school, but even a kid living 5 kms from school can get on a bike and ride to and from school every day.
|One of the two full bike racks at Laura Secord |
Elementary, not to mention the ones locked up
Something I would love to start here in my neighbourhood that has been done in place like Portland is a Bike Train, which is a bike to school program where parents ride around neighbourhood picking up kids along the way. Check out the 2 minute mark: http://vimeo.com/38385810. This creates a safe group atmosphere and encourages kids to join the group. We constantly teach our kids to not follow the crowd, or do something just because their friends are, but let's be honest, if your kid saw all their friends riding their bikes to school, I'm sure they'd be asking you to do it, too. I think that's a trend worth following.
|The Velo Children riding home from school this fall|
We, as parents, have a responsibility to lead by example. We all know that exercise is good for our bodies and our minds, and whether it's walking or biking to work, daycare, school or any other activity, we should do our best to try and get out of our cars and using our legs to get us from point A to point B more often. Things will get tough as the rain continues here in Vancouver, and weather turns cooler elsewhere in the world, but I will keep trying to ride to school with Coralie, even after the competition is over. Good habits start early, and this is one habit I want my kids to have for a lifetime!
More Reading about the competition:
The Epoch: http://bit.ly/P5ENCC
The Vancouver Sun: http://bit.ly/S0hngr