Monday, March 21, 2011

The Virtue of Practice

Yesterday was lovely, in the 70s, and the Kittyboy and I went outside. The neighbor boy was out on his bicycle - the boy who's six months younger but about two sizes bigger. It's been fascinating watching him and Kittyboy develop, because since KB was three months early, they're essentially three months apart, and each has done things earlier than the other. I remember being flabbergasted at "Bobby" kicking a ball up and down the street, when Kittyboy was just getting really good at walking. Bobby was big, sturdy, and RUNNING. But when he was running after the sorta-jogging Kittyboy that summer, and the first went up and over a log easily, Bobby put one foot on the log, stopped, and looked at me. He needed a hand for balance.
Bobby potty-trained first. Kittyboy spoke more clearly, and drank from an open cup while Bobby was still fighting to keep his bottle. It's just so cool to watch, who will do what next?
So Bobby rides a little bike with training wheels (and was riding a tricycle last year). It stands to reason, like walking, running, and kicking a ball, it's one of those gross-motor things Bobby does well and with gusto. This spring is the first that Kittyboy's been able to reach the pedals on his tricycle, and he's tried out the pedaling process, but it's all new, and it's all WORK, so mostly he pushes the tricycle around himself.
Well, yesterday he was watching Bobby on that bicycle. Been trying to pedal the trike, but not really getting anywhere. I explained that Bobby's just a little bigger, he has longer legs, and so he's been pedaling since last year. Kittyboy's face drooped, and he said, "And I'm still widdle - wight?"
Ooooohhhhh! My poor baby! So sad!
I told him NO, he is exactly the size he is supposed to be, and everyone grows and develops at their own speeds, and a goodly part of it is practice, too - Bobby's been pedaling since a year ago, and the more you do something, the better you get at it, and the easier it is. That's how it works.
So Kittyboy watched a little more, and then he got back on his tricycle. And he pushed, and he grunted, and he pushed, and he made it the length of the driveway. And I cheered! And I told him that's practice, it just takes work! He got off and turned it around, and went back the other way. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. And he was getting up some speed the last couple times! Great progress for one afternoon - he just needed the motivation to keep at it for more than five minutes!
And since he's getting the pedaling motion down, Husband is going to put air in the tires of the tiny little bike with training wheels that has been waiting for a certain little boy to learn how to pedal it. It's his size, but he had to figure out pedaling before it'd be of any use. It should be a little easier, since he can push with all his weight over the pedals instead of having the pedals way out in front of him.
Yay for learning the virtue of practice!

posted from Bloggeroid

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