We welcomed in the festive season with a brilliantly cold but fun Instructor training day today! Hosted at the Jimmy Dunnachie Family Learning Centre, on the Ashpark Primary campus in Thornliebank, we had staff from Woodacre, Burnbrae, Pollok Children’s Centre and Jimmy Dunnachie nursery join us, as well as Victoria and Alyson from South West Community Cycles.
South West Community Cycles has signed up as our newest Hero Organisation, supporting a group of nurseries in the local area to deliver Play on Pedals. We are very fortunate to have SWCC expertise on board, particularly that of Victoria Harris, a trained Bikeability tutor who will take on some of the delivery of the Instructor training in the New Year as well as provide help to nursery staff who are in her Play on Pedals cluster.
The staff at today’s training were fantastic – enthusiastic and willing to get stuck in despite it being freezing cold outside. We had a great session working on some of the maintenance and safety checks of the bikes, looking at pumping up tyres and adjusting brake pads – everyone recognised the importance of checking these safety points at the beginning of each session as a bike may have gained a puncture or loose handlebars in between times, for example. We then looked at some of the games using the bikes provided by Ashpark Primary, and had fun setting out some challenges and races for the participants.
We were joined by some very excited children in the afternoon, jumping up and down and keen to get a shot on the bikes; but first we fitted helmets and played some balance and warm up races. The staff had created an extended version of the name the parts game which really tested their children’s memory and photo recognition – running to and from the bikes using the flash cards to point out certain parts.
We had some taller children and so had the opportunity to practice turning a pedal bike into a balance bike so they could participate in the activities on suitably sized bikes. We also had some children who quickly picked up the hang of the balance bikes and so had the chance to race John, one of our staff on his adult bike – and win!
All staff came away feeling confident and enthused about Play on Pedals, with some discussing how they could come together to share their outdoor spaces between nurseries so that each nursery could benefit from the project.
In the New Year we will be delivering maintenance training and fixing existing bikes for these nurseries with support from South West Community Cycles and we are all very excited about 2015!