BikeWalkKC’s Education Team celebrated a record year in 2017, with nearly 5,000 kids in 33 schools in ten districts receiving Bicycle Lesson and Safety Training (BLAST) education! Now that winter break is over, it’s time to kick it into high gear for a new semester.
BLAST includes both classroom instruction and on-the-bike learning, for which BikeWalkKC uses a fleet of bikes made possible by community partners committed to children’s health. By the time the bikes have been ridden around cones, into fences, and off curbs, it’s time for a tune-up. Glen Rumbaugh, Education Operations Coordinator and mechanic, says that he touches “every bolt” between semesters: “Kids are pretty rough on bikes, especially when they are just learning to ride. We adjust brakes, true wheels, adjust the hubs and bottom brackets. Everything must be tight and safe before leaving this shop.”
While the mechanics are working on the bicycles, ten instructors are refreshing the curriculum and preparing their cones and stop signs for the spring semester. “This year, we’re hoping to present the lecture-heavy material in an assembly of several classes at once so the kids get to spend more time practicing practical skills on bikes,” says Karl Kraemer, Education Operations Coordinator. “The lessons are extremely important, but bikes are more fun than sitting in a classroom.” When the new session begins in February, BikeWalkKC will deploy the instructors with the rehabbed fleet to four schools in three different districts in the Kansas City metro.
For more information about how BikeWalkKC can bring BLAST to your school, visit our Youth Education page!