Story Riders (SR) is a bilingual (Spanish/English) bicycle-riding, after-school program for Albuquerque’s under served Indigenous and Latino elementary school children that incorporates environmental, cultural and academic experiential learning. Currently we serve Dolores Gonzales Elementary, Reginald Chavez Elementary and Valle Vista Elementary.
Our 4th and 5th graders learn to obey bicycle laws and ride bikes safely on the Bosque’s bike trails and in their own neighborhoods. Students spend hours every week riding bikes within the Bosque. They learn to repair and maintain their bikes and eat healthy, organic snacks. They ride bikes to meet and interview local elders, environmentalists, historians, organic farmers, shop-owners, or artists.
Gain physical strength and coordination through bicycle-riding,
Increase students' knowledge of local cultures and local environmental ecosystems through educational activities and meetings with local community members, and
Increase students' academic skills through developing interview questions, responding to writing prompts and processing quotes from their interviews with local community members.
Creating a sense of community
Students learn about the history, the peoples, the environment, and the places that make their communities vibrant, culturally rich, historically significant, and environmentally important. Also, parents, guardians, and/or other family members are invited to join their children on bicycle rides to give families opportunities to ride bicycles together--activities the families can continue beyond Story Riders.
“When your parents or grandparents are sharing information with you, like warning you not to do something or showing you how to do something…This is important for our communities so that we learn our traditions and our cultures and that we keep them going. It’s also important to learn about other people’s cultures and other people’s traditions…
A lot of hate comes from fear and fear comes from not understanding. So if we learn to understand people better, not just people from our culture or people who are like us, but people who are really different than us, then we’ll learn a lot about them and gain understanding.” (Alicia Chavez, Barelas Community resident/historian, Spring Semester, 2017)