How Is A Bicycle Made? Angela Royston (2007)

Aimed at 5-6 year old children, this book tells a simplified story of how raw materials become a bicycle that is then sold in a shop

Heinermann 0 431 05054 6 32pp £6.50

Initiatives to encourage children back on to bicycles come and go, but few educationalists seem to grasp the possibilities of the bicycle as an integrated teaching aid. By exploring the science and maths of a bicycle there is much scope to demystify a complex manufactured product. Such a process might also start encourage the idea that with a spanner and a hex key it is possible to adjust, modify and repair your mount.

Bicycles remain a popular Christmas present – but as anyone who has taught children cycle proficiency will tell you – a shocking number of these gifts will languish unused in garages before making their final journey in the back of a car to the municipal tip.

Royston’s book is a series of captioned photographs, each focussing on a stage of production. In most cases it will be used for guided reading, and as a prompt for wider discussion. As such it would make an ideal companion to gift to a bicycle itself. Not only can the wheels provide a thrilling entrée into the world of fast, self-managed travel, but also offer an introduction to design, manufacture and marketing.

PS December 2008

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