There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere. ~Issac Asimov
This school year we’ve been thrilled to have both Calgary Girls School and Connect Charter School host our Bike Science program at their campuses. Bike Science gives Grade 4 students the opportunity to roll up their sleeves as they explore torque, leverage, pulleys, wheels, axels and gear ratios first hand. Working in small groups, each student gets a chance to understand the science of simple machines in terms they can relate to. How can we make going up hills easier with gears? How does the tread on our tires impact our speed? What’s friction? How can it help my bike stop or make it hard to turn? How do pedals act as levers? These questions and more are asked and answered through our series of Bike Science workshops, which are co-designed with each audience in mind. Each experience is tailored to a school’s interests and needs.
Beyond the bikes, the educators we’ve worked with have creatively incorporated other aspects of the curriculum including writing exercises, social studies and math. We’ve been blown away by the quality of work by these young students and are continuously looking for ways to challenge their knowledge and skills with each activity. For many of the students, this may be the first time they’ve used certain tools, loosened a screw or fixed something. It’s incredible to watch how empowered they are when they’ve done it successfully for themselves. It’s more than just bikes. It’s more than just science. They learn practical bike mechanics skills that they can use to help maintain their bikes at home.
Our Bike Science program may only be just over a year old but it demonstrates the power of positive hands-on learning and is just another way that we use the bicycle as a tool to achieve our mission.
For more information about how to book or sponsor a Bike Science program for next school year, please contact Sasha.