Bike Commuting with a reluctant child
It's wonderful to live in a city where biking and walking to school isn't just a one day affair. Safe Routes for Schools is an ongoing, year-round program to offer support to parents and kids who bike and walk to school. And, urbanMamas are teaming with the BTA right now to come up with even more ways we support our grassroots efforts to take alternative modes of transportation, as families, every day to school and work.
Even with these programs in play, we may not always have the children who want to come along for the ride. Our family bikes to school probably 70% of the time (so far this year), and the bus or car days are real treats. Some mornings, they beg to drive to school. Janice is encountering similar resistance:
My husband bike commutes and I’m trying to bike more and drive less, but my eight-year-old is reluctant. And if you’ve ever biked with a reluctant kid, you understand the true meaning of “passive-aggressive”! Who knew pedals could ever turn that slowly?
Anyway, we already have a system where he earns a reward for every 10 cheerful rides, but now that’s not enough. I’m looking for tips on motivation and equipment (any knitting patterns for child-sized lobster-claw mittens out there?...and I'd also love to chat with other uMamas about safety, routes, and benefits.)
I have to go pick him up from school now (with the car, since he was “too tired” to bike this morning), but I’m really looking forward to some help from this great bike-friendly community!
Suggestions for motivation? Getting the kids out on the bike lanes, especially when it's cold and sort of damp? What's your best rainy-day outfit? Best "I-don't-wanna" treat?