Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Look Mom! No training wheels!

This morning after Sam announced he was done with school for the day, he raced outside to play. A few moments later, I heard shrieks from the lawn. Paige was shouting for me to come right away. I couldn't see Sam. He was behind the van. I was afraid that someone was hurt. Before I could ask, Sam came out from behind the van riding a bike! He taught himself to ride a bike! At first he would hold onto the van to gain momentum and then ride onto the grass.

Within 4 or 5 minutes though, he figured out how to push off while pedaling. It was so exciting. By the time his dad got home from work, he was riding all over the cul-de-sac, making turns, braking to stop etc. It was so exciting to see his determination and joy.
In thinking about this I'm reminded of a few things. Kids have an
amazing capacity to learn on their own. To think out problems, find solutions, try it out, try it out somemore until they are satisfied with the result. Sam without any parental assistance taught himself to ride a bike. He told me his best friend Zach would push off to pedal-thats how he came up with that. He learned from watching Zach several months ago.

I have much to learn from this real life example of child led learning. Children will learn when they are ready. You can force them to learn but when it is on their own terms, the knowledge is so much more tangible and there is an excitement to it that can't be reproduced when it is on a parents timetable vs. the childs. I am posting this for my benefit. So I can remember. So I won't forget that I'm leaving my comfort zone for something better. I must remember.
Funny side note-the only bike helmet we had out front was Lilly's. A pink barbie helmet. Sam wore this all day. However, by the end of the day he determined he could no longer ride until he got an appropriate boy bike helmet because barbie just will not do for a 6 year old boy.
Sam practiced all day learning to ride around the man hole cover-look at that sense of accomplishment spread over his face. I love it!


Kim said...

You've been busy on here. Good Job! Congratulations to Sam, I can't even get Levi to ride his tricycle, he prefers the push bikes still (silly kid). I can't wait to go read that story, when I am home again and have time.

debra said...

Just came across your site. Glad to have found you :-)
You are so right, I think. The river flows by itself; there is no need to push it. We are kind of like gardeners: we amend the soil, creating the best environment we can; we use the best quality seeds and plants. But we don't make it grow. It does that all by itself. In it's own time, in it's own way.
Congratulations to Sam! My youngest, 16, just removed her training wheels, too. She got her driver's license last week, with no points deducted.

Chari said...

Debra, I love that analogy. I think I need to hang a framed picture of a garden now just as a reminder to plant, sow and tend. Don't force. Thanks for stopping by.

Reddirt Woman said...

Hi, Chari.... This is a delightful post. Not only do we see the pride in Sam, but we hear your pride through your words. Children DO learn from observation so this is a great reminder to always try to be aware of everything we do around them. You may think that they are absorbed in something that they are doing, but often when they seem busy they are taking in things all around them.

What a wonderful post. Thanks for the smiles.

Helen G.

Mrs. G. said...

Go Sam go! He looks like a determined kid.

Chari said...

Thanks for your kind and generous comments Helen. It's really fun to receive comments from people that just find me somehow. and Mrs G! you stopped by. That is so much fun for me because I read your blog everyday. Thanks again!

Rebecca said...

It is so fun getting to know kids! They just have such great little spirits and it is so fun to imagine how the little personality will translate to adulthood. He's a hard worker!