Part of our internship program involves each intern writing a weekly blog about whatever topic they’ve learned or discovered. This week, Emma Ulrich, interning with us this semester from Butler University, has tackled the blog:
Easily my favorite part about working with kids is their honesty. There’s no question about how the kids feel about each course, or even riding the bikes themselves. One of my favorite things is asking if they’re ready to ride bikes and the response is a resounding “YES!!!!” It makes me happy to know that these kids are so excited to ride the bikes that they can barely contain it.
More than just verbal honesty is the honesty in facial expressions as well. A couple of times, some of the kids truly feel as if they aren’t able to finish a course. However, with words of encouragement, they do finish the course, and their eyes light up as they realize that they just accomplished something they didn’t think was possible.
Finally, the candidness of the kids, as well as their honesty, is another favorite part of mine. There have been times where the kids are not too excited about riding the bikes, sadly; many of them are scared or worried of how exactly the system works, and they aren’t afraid to tell us so. However, by the end of the four weeks (if not by the end of their first time riding the bikes) many of the kids are so excited about bike riding, even though they were vocal the first time about how much they didn’t want to ride the bikes. Knowing that the kids had fun and are happy to express this by the end is always heartwarming. Additionally, the kids who were timid initially sometimes end up being the ones who encourage their classmates the most! As I said before, the kids are not shy about telling us their real thoughts, so it’s always encouraging to hear these thoughts change throughout the time they spend on our bikes. It’s exciting to see a kid go from honestly timid about riding bikes to honestly excited and wanting everyone to be as excited as he or she is.