Every day at Greg Carroll Learn 2 Skate my group (Scott's Stingrays) does the same thing: We warm-up, learn skills, and play a game. The game we've been playing this year is "Finding Nemo." Here's how we play: Scott tells the story of finding Nemo and the kids have to use their skating skills to act out the story.
Particularly important for today's group is that the main character, Marlin, is afraid of the ocean. However, he wants to find his son Nemo so much, that he is willing to risk traveling across the ocean to find him.
A lot of the kids in my group are still a bit scared of skating. A lot of them may not skate again after Learn 2 Skate is over, but all of them will have something that is scary. We're not just teaching skating, we're actually teaching how to overcome fears.
In one scene of the movie Finding Nemo, Marlin is clinging to a rock completely paralyzed with fear unable to continue. He has this exchange with his ever positive companion Dori:
Dori: You know what you got to do when life gets you down?
Marlin: I don't want to know what you got to do?
Dori: Just Keep Swimming, Just keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming!
So here's one boy applying the lessons learned at Greg Carroll Learn 2 Skate:
This clip was not even captured during game time. The boy was just trying to get up the courage to get away from the boards, and he remembered that Dori said, "Just Keep Swimming" during our game last week. Many of the kids in Learn 2 Skate start out like Marlin clinging to a rock. Our kids start out clinging to the boards, afraid of what might happen if they venture out into the ice without anything to hold onto. It really is a scary concept: there is nothing to hang onto. However, the assumption is that you will fall and be unable to get up. Actually, as the first graders of Andersen are learning today, if we just keep swimming, or skating, or working, or talking, or trying we'll probably make it eventually, and if we fall we will probably just get up and "just keep skating, just keep skating, just keep skating . . ."