About the Project
Putting Wheels in Motion: A Service Learning Project
The Bicycle Recycle Project took shape around the notion that middle school was the ideal time to teach students mechanical skills that they could use for the rest of their lives. The Project gives students the opportunity to believe that school can work for them. In 2002, the Bicycle Recycle Project received the Golden Bell Award from the California School Boards Association recognizing it as a unique and exemplary program. In 2009, Seven Hills School received California Distinguished School Recognition in part because of the Bicycle Recycle Project. Thanks to a generous grant, a state of the art Bicycle Recycle Project classroom/workshop was built in 2010. Today, the large classroom is filled with tools, bikes, parts, and exuberant students and volunteers. The Project has trained over 1500 students and built over 2000 bicycles. The Bicycle Recycle Project is continually advancing and seeking new opportunities to share the program with other schools and communities.
The Bicycle Recycle Project at Seven Hills School in Nevada City, California, provides students hands-on learning of basic bicycle mechanical skills, reinforces the value of recycling, and provides the satisfaction of helping others.
- Encourages problem-solving and critical thinking skills
- Benefits students interested in developing career pathways
- Promotes a cooperative workshop environment
- Increases social skills and a social conscience
- Provides refurbished bikes that can be kept by the student or donated to a friend, family member, or community organization
- Student mechanics provide bicycle repair for various community bike events such as bicycle safety rodeos, Earth Day celebrations, and clinics at schools and neighborhoods.
- Provides an after school alternative from "nothing to do"
- Offers students in six through eight grades the chance to build bikes for themselves or others
- Community members are able to recycle their bicycles at the school.
- The need for new products and materials is reduced when students know how to maintain and repair what they have.
- Bicycle parts that are headed for the landfill are recycled and turned into usable bikes.
- Students travel annually to Loaves & Fishes, a charitable organization dedicated to feeding the hungry and sheltering the homeless in Sacramento.
- Students provide onsite free bicycle maintenance and repair clinics for up to fifty guests at Loaves & Fishes.
- Bicycle lights, locks, baskets, tire repair kits, water bottles and water bottle cages are distributed to guests.
- A free raffle of student-built bikes brought from the Bicycle Recycle Project is the day's highlight.
- Students learn that bicycles are the primary mode of transportation for some homeless people and can help to rebuild their lives.
- Provides the student body with a bicycle club that is safe and fun.
- Helps students build personal responsibility, confidence and self-esteem.
- Expands student participation in a healthy activity through organized weekly rides.
- Empowers students to become more self-reliant by providing instruction at all levels of bicycling skills, bicycle maintenance, bicycle safety, and emergency on-the-trail repairs.
- Students will learn to respect others as well as the environment through learning multi-use trail etiquette, trail advocacy, and trail maintenance.
- To promote cycling as an easy, healthy and fun activity within our school and community.