A story from one of our Learn To Skate instructors
“It was beautiful to see the power of positivity and encouragement come from his fellow classmates… young children.”
Here is the Story:
In my Basic 1 class on Saturday morning, I had a few students who were very new to skating and who had just joined my class in the new year. They have been making great progress and are starting to have fun!
However, one student in particular wasn’t having as much fun. He was the newest of them all and was still having trouble standing.
I asked the Teen Assistant to work with him last week and this week just to get him used to marching and eventually gliding so that I could continue to work with the others who were almost ready for Basic 2. I made sure he gave up the “blue thing” by the time class started, I checked-in with him, watched and encouraged. But by mid-class last Saturday, I saw him struggle and I saw the teen assistant look deflated as he just wanted to hang on to her. I checked-in and asked how he was doing. He looked at me with sad eyes and said “I can’t do it!” (a normal response from someone who is struggling…)
Immediately class was stopped and I pulled my students in. I said “everyone, this student thinks he cannot skate. He said ‘he can’t do it’. We’ve all felt like this before, right? That skating was hard and that we wanted to give up?” Everyone nodded and said yes. One student yelled “I felt like that when I started!” (This one student had just started skating just before Christmas break which I made a point of mentioning).
I continued, “So because we all know what it feels like to struggle when doing something, we are going to help (said student) and on the count of three say: you can do it!!” They did! And really loudly!! And then they wanted to do it again and again! The student who felt dejected lit up and smiled brightly. It was absolutely adorable. The students in the class circled around him to encourage him. One student (who had just started in January) told a story about how she wanted to get off the ice all of the time because she was cold from falling and couldn’t do it, but she practiced and
now she can do rocking horses! Another student said he never thought he would be able to skate but now he can.
So I asked the class if they would mind starting the class over from the beginning and help the “student” march. They marched beside the student and encouraged him. He marched with them. They lifted him up and believed in him. Five minutes before this moment, he was hanging off of a Teen Assistant and almost in tears.
At the end the student was so excited to get two stickers… an extra one for trying super hard and for not giving up.