Today I went to free skating at the Mullins Center at UMASS today. I hadn’t been on the ice in years…. maybe as much as two decades. At first, I was pretty wobbly, but gradually it came back to me, and I was able to make somewhere between ten and fifteen laps of the rink. This is somewhere between a kilometer and a mile. My legs are jelly today.
But I want to go back tomorrow.
Let’s review. Sometime between when I was ten and when I was twenty, I had ice skating lessons. Maybe it was formal, maybe it wasn’t. There weren’t more than five or six lessons, I’m guessing. How to stop. How to start. How to push off. How to skate fast. How to turn left, and how to turn right. How to avoid other people on the ice. How to lean forward and not back. How to be a little mroe nimble than an elephant on roller skates.
However many lessons I had, it was enough to get back on the ice after at least a decade and a half, and feel comfortable and proficient in an hour and a half. Kudos to my teacher(s) whoever he/she/they was/were.
I have newfound respect for our hockey players at school, who often do hard practices for 3-4 hours a day, and skate even harder during games. Kudos to them.
How do we teach reading, writing, mathematics, and other essential skills and modes of thinking so it’s that fun, that easy, and that joyous to come back to it even after decades away?