Goshen schools to begin program to teach bicycle repair to some middle school students

The Goshen school system will begin a unique hands-on program for middle school students struggling with traditional classroom learning. // WSBT 22

This fall the Goshen school system will begin a unique hands-on program for some middle school students.

It’s for those struggling with traditional classroom learning.

Changing Gears will teach how to repair and maintain bicycles.

Goshen schools will team up with a community bike project to make it happen.

Repairing, maintaining and selling used bikes is what the non-profit Chain Reaction Bicycle Project is known for.

It’s a community venture used by many.

The school system looked at Chain Reaction and said it could be the basis of a new education program for middle school students.

The program is to be known as Changing Gears.

“So Changing Gears will be an alternative school for those students who have struggles with traditional classrooms, and they will spend part of their day actually learning the art and science of bicycle repair,” said Steve Hope, assistant superintendent secondary schools.

Part of their time will be spent with an online curriculum learning math, science, English and social studies.

The bike repair class will be held in one of the modular buildings at the middle school, the online curriculum in another one.

Instructor Kyle Weldy has been learning all about bicycle repair at the Chain Reaction shop.

“We have had to invest then for Kyle Weldy who will be the teacher of this Changing Gears program. He has learned then how to be a bicycle mechanic this summer. So he has those skills then he can transfer to our students. Then in the fall, when he is actually teaching the students,” said Hope.

Those who work with the community bicycle project say teaming up with the Goshen School System will be a win-win situation for all of the students involved. Among other things it will teach them critical thinking skills, problem solving and team work along the way.

“This is a very accessible way to learn physically. Educators are understanding that there are six or seven different learning styles and some of those learning styles involve physical movement, the physical doing of what's being taught,” said Tyler Klassen.

Students will actually fix bikes provided by Chain Reaction.

The only real cost for the project will be buying tools.

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