8 Reasons why biking with kids is good for them and you

biking the Dalton HighwayTravel is the best education a child can get. I’ve been a classroom teacher for 21 years and, although we do the best we can in the classroom, we are limited by those four walls around us. By getting out and seeing the world first hand, children will have a much deeper understanding of the world around them.

Travel is good for kids in so many ways, and traveling on bicycle is even more beneficial. There are many reasons I feel seeing the world from the seat of a bike are good for both parents and kids:

1) Determination. One of the most important skills for people today is the idea of sticking with a task even though it may be hard. Children learn determination when they try to climb a tough hill or battle fierce headwinds. They learn that by taking baby steps they can reach their goal – it may take a while, but they’ll get there!

2) Life is not a bowl of cherries. Some days are the pits, but we push on to get through. When traveling on bicycle, you will face tough days and all you can do is plod through it the best you can. We also know most days are wonderful and that’s what keeps us going. That’s exactly how life is – we don’t stop living just because we have a bad day or two.

pushing bike against headwind3) There are no limits to what they can do. Self confidence is a wonderful thing that helps us accomplish so much in life. If a child can pedal across the state, country, or world, is there anything he can’t do?

4) Understand the unifying nature of all humankind – regardless of color/religion/language. People are people, and by traveling and meeting people from all walks of life children learn that ALL kids are fun to play with, even if they can’t talk with them.

5) Built in play things rather than idiot boxes. Most kids today spend way too much time with electronic entertainment. Who needs all that when Mother Nature’s toys surround you?

6) Creative. Children learn to be more creative with what they have when they carry few toys. They use sticks and rocks and leaves and pine cones and berries and…

7) Contextual learning. If you learn something in context it means a whole lot more than learning random facts and figures. When you travel, all those random facts come together and make sense.

8) Active. In today’s sedentary world, need I say more?

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

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