When I first wrote about riding bikes to school with my daughter, way back in 2012, I had no idea what the future would hold for us. I just knew that I wanted her to get all the benefits that an active lifestyle would bring.
It seems like only yesterday that she was starting kindergarten. Since then, her brother started going to school, so he’s been riding, too. I’ve loved those days when the three of us were all riding in our line, with me at the back making sure cars didn’t get too close.
Plus, it meant that we weren’t contributing to the crazy car mayhem in front of the school every morning.
We’ve gone through periods of time where the kids haven’t wanted to ride at all. So we walked. Sometimes they rode scooters.
Last year my daughter started walking to school with a friend, and now my son, in Grade 2, is walking with them.
I still ride with them whenever they’ll let me.
But this fall my daughter is changing schools. She’s chosen to start French immersion in Grade 6, and it means she’ll have to travel farther to get to school, and she won’t have a friend to go with.
I’m hoping she’ll want to ride her bike if for no other reason than it’s faster than walking.
I know her new school has a connection to Active & Safe Routes to School (it’s an Ontario initiative, but it’s relevant everywhere), so we’ll be finding out the recommended travel route. And we’ll spend some time this summer riding the route so she can become familiar with it.
I’ve equipped her with the skills, she’s got the equipment, and I do my best to be a role model.
Now it’s up to her.