June 3rd has been celebrated as World Bicycle Day since 2018. Amidst the chaos and uncertainty of the pandemic, physical activity must prove to be a hearty boost for the mind and the body. What better way than a good old bike riding session, the United Nations agrees to that.
Acknowledging the uniqueness, longevity and versatility of the bicycle, which has been in use for two centuries, and that it is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation, fostering environmental stewardship and health, the General Assembly decided to declare 3 June World Bicycle Day. - The United Nations
Here are two stories of schools in the United States that believe in bicycle riding as more than a sport.
Brianne Morris a grade four teacher at Century Elementary School Park Rapids, Minnesota, took her class biking to cheer them up. The pandemic has been difficult on everybody, more so on the children. Younger kids do not seem to understand the full gravity of the situation and also at the same time are asked to stay away from everybody they know and love. Being in the closed quarters of their homes and having very little outside time has definitely taken a toll on their emotional state.
Releasing the same Morris took her students for a safe, outdoorsy activity that would prove to be a good exercise too. Morris took them through the Heartland State Trail which led them to Dorset and back. "The entire fourth grade took a bike to Dorset and then ate lunch at the park there. On the way, some classes stopped at Heartland Park to play at the park. It was a fun, beautiful bike ride," Morris told a local news channel.
Scales Technology Academy in Tempe, Arizona, organised a bicycle riding learning program ‘All Kids Bike’. All the schools in Tempe have been teaching their kids to ride bikes in the physical education class via this program. “One of the best ways to get kids active is to get them excited about bicycles. It’s a skill that is going to serve them now and through life,” said Ryan McFarland, a board member with All Kids Bike.
The cycles are without paddles, to teach the children how to balance while in motion. Along with matching helmets, these black and white bicycles are provided for free to the schools with the help of local sponsors. “It’s been a tough year on our kids and seeing them out and active and moving is a sign of blue skies ahead for the state of Arizona,” said Gov. Doug Ducey, who helped bring the said bicycle riding program at Scales Technology Academy.
Worrying about only the present may not always be the most helpful thing to do, let us teach the children a useful skill for the future on this World Bicycle Day.
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