Sixth Grade Bike Workshop – An Interview with Sixth Graders
When one thinks of school, building a bike may not be the first thing that comes to mind, but this is just the type of experience students at Episcopal School of Nashville are offered. Through a community partnership with Oasis Center of Nashville, sixth grade students in ESN’s Intermediate School are building their own bikes from frame to finish. “Empower. Rebuild. Ride On.” This is what the Oasis Bike Workshop seeks to bring to its participants.
Students have been coming to campus weekly to meet their IS teachers and a volunteer from Oasis as a part of their On-Campus Connections. “I like working with the wrenches a lot,” Darren Ekezie says when describing his favorite part of the workshop. “This is the dirtiest thing I’ve ever done.” Oasis brings a trailer full of tools, repurposed bike parts, frames, and expertise – anything students would need. Students are taught mechanics and know-how.
“It started off we were taking off tires and cleaning bolts, but now it’s getting more and more fun because I am learning to build a bike and I have never done that before,” says Susannah Aplin. “It’s really cool.”
Episcopal School of Nashville plans to continue this workshop for the next several weeks and every sixth-grade participant will finish with their own bike. In changing times, we are challenged to rethink our idea of school through innovation, community engagement, and experiential learning. Come to school – build a bike – leave with a life skill.