Jun 22, 2011

Some New Things to Try

Close to Home, Now
Originally uploaded by Snak Shak
As I round the corner into my last week of work, I am already moving into some non-work related "next life" projects that I have been keeping "on hold" but can now move forward on.

Last night I was inducted in a local Sportsman's club (aka "gun club") and will be honing my skills at target pistol and rifle this summer. There's the option of competition if I am interested in that, but I'll strive for consistent competency first and competition second, and let the results dictate the pace of advancement.

This weekend I have an intensive League Certified Instructor (LCI) course racked up. I've been contemplating pursuing LCI for awhile now, but time and energy has been a scarce commodity. For those that don't know, LCI is a certification overseen by the League of American Bicyclists which gives a person the credentials and skills to teach effective cycling for anything between youngsters to commuters to senior citizens.

When I realized that an LCI class was being conducted in late June in St. Paul, I jumped at the chance to sign up. The course will be interesting, and challenging, I think. The main thrust of the course is how to teach - not what to teach. Traffic Skills 101 is a pre-requisite course that I took last summer, and I recall most of that, but to get into LCI one needs to pass the prequalification exam. It's not particularly easy, either. I studied, took the exam and passed my first try, but I did miss a few answers so I was able to resubmit and up my score, hopefully.

During the course of the course, we each need to teach two segments and then get critqued on our instruction. My assignments are co-teaching bike type, bike selection and bike terminology and then solo teaching riding at night. Fortunately, I am pretty conversant in all of those subject areas already, and I love riding at night, so for me it will be a matter of nailing the presentation, stressing what the manual says is important and not forgetting something, I think.

Still, I find I am a little nervous about this - I don't think I'll have too many challenges with the road tests, and my public speaking and presentation experience should pay off here, but mastering any new area requires making a few mistakes and learning from them, and that's usually uncomfortable for most of us.

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