by Andrej Ciho
Successful transition from youth to adulthood requires maturing in multiple areas of life. There is intellectual growth, emotional growth, character growth and not to forget physical growth. At the South Atlanta Bike Shop we we wanted to make sure we help prepare our youth for the future in all of these areas.
The earn-a-bike program at the bike shop affords us an environment rich with learning opportunities. We have specific areas in which we guide the youth with the belief that if you do something often enough it becomes a habit and good habits are what helps us navigate life successfully. Here are three examples:
Bicycle repair requires attention to detail and through observation we can identify how healthy or unhealthy different components and systems are. Completing a repair with excellence brings joy to the young mechanic and the bicycle owner alike. Consistently delivering excellent work is a highly desired trait in the job marketplace.
#2 Critical Thinking
Yes, addressing a flat tire necessitates mechanical expertise. But it also requires critical thinking skills, which are applicable across all industries and careers. Youth must diagnose what caused the tire to go flat, assess if all systems that protect the inner tube are healthy, and decide if components should be repaired or replaced. If replacement is necessary, they have to think through if they have everything they need to follow the proper sequence for repair. Finally, our teens consider how to educate the owner on bicycle maintenance to prevent future issues.
We go out of our way to make sure that what we say (or write) is clear, complete, professional, and kind. We teach the youth to be aware of how they communicate, observe how the recipient experiences their communication, and make adjustments to improve.
Youth at the South Atlanta Bike Shop have fun working on bikes together. Learning while having fun is the best kind of learning, and we believe it will benefit them long after they outgrow the bicycle they earned.