Learning To Ride

learning to ride

We've been taking the slow route in helping Simon learn to ride his bike.

Slow and deliberate with lots and lots of confidence-building praise and support.


While visiting my brother and his family we took him to a track to get in some more practice.

He was doing so awesome...better than ever with his balance.

I had the video camera rolling so he could see that he really was doing it. He loved seeing those videos and it was such a good reminder to me that he's a visual kid and seeing himself in action is a great teaching tool. My favorite parts of the video (which are much to shaky to share) are hearing my brother and sister-in-law cheering in the background as Chris takes his hand off the bike or Simon's back. There's so much love in their voices.


And then he got going a bit too fast around a corner.

There was a crash.

And lots of tears.


And lots of comfort.

And maybe even a bit of chocolate cake with the sentiment "way to go Simon" written in blue icing on top after dinner to celebrate all the awesome riding he'd been doing before the crash and maybe, just maybe encourage him to get on his bike again.


We were a bit worried he'd resist getting back on his bike after the crash but he was totally ready to try again.

Even a rainbow and a bunch of crows showed up to give him some support.


That willingness to try again after falling off...it's so huge.


He got right back on and was totally excited all over again.

Keep practicing buddy - we know you can do it!

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  1. Denise

    2011-07-22 12:09:33 -0400

    It's nice to see someone else who isn't pressuring their kid to hurry up and learn it all at once. My DD is five and still has training wheels and can't get the idea of peddling just right and some family members keep asking why she's not speeding around by now. Every child is NOT the same.

    I love the fact that a rainbow showed up. :)

  2. MK

    2011-07-22 12:10:37 -0400

    Slow and steady wins the race in life and when learning to ride a bike . He will master this skill soon I am sure. Thank you so very much for sharing this moment with us. The pictures immediately took me back to when my girls learned to ride their bikes.

  3. Libbi M.

    2011-07-22 12:45:28 -0400

    Go Simon! Absolutely love the shot with rainbow! Thank you for sharing.

  4. Leah Larson

    2011-07-22 13:12:32 -0400

    That a boy! Way to go Simon. I remember that time in my life. It is scary. You are very brave to get back on after your fall. I bet the chocolate cake was super yummy!!!

  5. Lida

    2011-07-22 13:35:34 -0400

    Great post! love the rainbow picture. You are an inspiration for capturing the moments.

  6. Cindy B.

    2011-07-22 14:05:54 -0400

    LOVE all the positive praise!! Positive encouragement is so powerful - - words are so powerful!! I love seeing and hearing that not only Simon's parents give praise with words but with the tone in their voices, as well as, his aunt & uncle! LOVE IT!!

    I wish everyone could do that - - especially for children!!!

    Go Simon - - one day it will just happen!!! Love the rainbow - - such encouragement!! Go Simon!!!

  7. Renee VanEpps

    2011-07-22 14:38:55 -0400

    Oh what a sweet story, you should pat yourselves on the back for being such supportive and understanding parents :) GORGEOUS photos!

  8. Kim

    2011-07-22 15:05:24 -0400

    That is so awesome. Go, Simon, Go!

  9. Stacy B

    2011-07-22 17:33:58 -0400

    Wonderful post - and way to go, Simon! It got the tears going here too....my son also has autism (Aspergers) and he so desperately wants to ride his bike without the training wheels. This is summer #3 we've taken them off, worked with him patiently, only to have a good cry at the end and begging for the trainers back on. I'm so glad to see another little boy bravely break through.

  10. Amy

    2011-07-22 19:31:23 -0400

    Oh hon we can relate. Our little boy is on the spectrum and has moderate hypotonia (low muscle tone), he just turned six and is still far away from riding a two wheeler without training wheels.

  11. Jaime

    2011-07-22 22:29:11 -0400

    The photo with the rainbow is absolutely stunning! I feel like it sums up the story you have told here so well. If I was making a scrapbook page with your journaling here and just one photo: that is the photo I would pick.

  12. Cindy

    2011-07-23 11:27:50 -0400

    Way to go SIMON!! He's one lucky little boy to have such wonderful support.

  13. Joi Ferckel

    2011-07-23 14:43:24 -0400

    ali...you are such an amazing mother...learning and growing along with your son. you are such and inspiration..not just creatively but in life as well.

  14. Grace

    2011-07-23 18:39:43 -0400

    So glad Simon got back on the bike to try again. I so loved that period of teaching my children to ride a bike. It's almost like the first step of letting go...so sweet, brave and trusting they are. One second they can't and the next they are off, pedaling away with the wind in their faces.

  15. Kay B.

    2011-07-24 00:15:55 -0400

    Have you ever heard of a balance bike? It doesn't have pedals. My grandson had been struggling to ride his bike, but after riding the balance bike for a couple of days, he was able to master his big bike. Thank you for sharing your life.

  16. Amandine Choret

    2011-07-24 09:06:59 -0400

    I like much this one http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6141/5960194326_2d05b0269a.jpg ! It is quite simply FABULOUS !

    With the pleasure of receiving you on my blog and of reading you:)

  17. fontucky princess

    2011-07-24 12:58:58 -0400

    CONGRATS SIMON!!! Thank you for sharing Simon's accomplishment with us. It brought a tear to my eye. How many parents take for granted their children learning how to ride a bicycle? I know for me and my daughter we celebrate every single accomplishment because I know just how much she struggles. Through her sheer determination, with guidance from me and those who love her, she attains every single goal she sets her mind to. I remind her that Autism is only a disabililty if she let's it be. Autism makes her who she is, a unique person with a unique perspective of the world. We celebrate this accomplishment of Simon's with you!

  18. BarbaraLH

    2011-07-24 13:03:42 -0400

    I read your stuff all the time...your blog and two classes (OLW and On the Road) -- find it inspirational and educative and fun....and just had to comment because this is such a heartwarming story -- in word, photo, sentiment!

  19. Kim

    2011-07-24 23:14:05 -0400

    It's good to see another kid at 9 learning how to ride a bike. I was 9 when I learned also. Yay kiddo!

  20. Venkat

    2011-07-29 01:39:10 -0400

    Way to go Simon! This brought tears in to my eyes.

  21. Nancy G.

    2011-07-29 03:02:19 -0400

    You are so true about videos and visual kids. Nothing motivates my Deaf students more than seeing themselves or their friends in videos. The first thing one girl signs is- "Can we email a copy to Mom?"

  22. CathyM

    2011-07-29 13:00:24 -0400

    How awesome to document such a great learning moment!

  23. Jan G

    2011-07-29 13:56:33 -0400

    He has come so far and made such huge strides since I first started reading your blog and seeing your layouts in the mags! Being a retired Special Ed teacher, it makes me so happy to see parents who are proud of their children, even when others may think it an unusually small accomplishment! Keep up the hard work (because I know it's not easy) and support for Alex! High five, buddy!

  24. Blog Larson

    2011-08-01 03:27:38 -0400

    The creative art of photography captured the story of the life of a dad ans a kid who is learning to ride his bicycle! Now that's the essence of compiling pictures in a scrapbook or any art compilation - how memories are cherished. Well-captured moments! I recently published an article about making pictures narrate better story in any art compilation. Please check my site! Thanks!

  25. Project Life | Weeks Twenty-Seven, Twenty-Eight, and Twenty-Nine | Ali Edwards

    2011-08-02 06:01:21 -0400

    [...] took the Learning To Ride post and copied and pasted the journaling onto a 6×4 Story Overlay. I’ve got a post that [...]

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