Jill’s Joyful ride

Published: 22 November 2023

“Jill is shy and quiet until she gets her bike.”

What is it about?

Moving independently and freely can give children a sense of freedom and independence in their social life. Compare children who go to school in the backseat of their parents’ car, which resembles isolated iron capsules, to the children who ride independently and freely on their bicycles and have an intimate, meaningful connection with the city and people. When they actively engage with urban life, they become actors on the social scene. There is a choice between passively watching and actively participating in urban life.

“At school Jill would barely talk,

But on her bike, she would sing

And mike to hhe peple on the sidewalk.

She had the confidence of a king.”

Written by Jacqui Hicks and illustrated by Lori Dean, Jill’s joyful ride is another amazing book that revolves around cycling and children. The story follows the main character, Jill, as she learns to overcome her fears and insecurities through her experiences with cycling. Jacqui sheds light on how the bicycle can have a positive impact on our children mentally and boost their social skills. The book is written in a descriptive and engaging style, with vivid imagery and emotional depth focusing on showing the bicycle can make our children more socially active and connect them with the world around.

Jacqui didn’t start cycling until later in life, but has embraced it so much, she was compelled to write about it! She has researched and worked in the field of transport and has two adorable boys that she hopes will grow up in a world with more bicycles.

Lori discovered the joy, freedom and independence of riding her bike at age 5 and it’s still her favorite way to get around. She is an urban planner and designer who knows that riding a bicycle for transport improves our streets, cities and communities, making them healthier and happier, and less damaging to our planet.

What approach does it take?

Jill’s joyful ride is a rhyming book that employs storytelling and illustrations to shed light on positive mental effects of cycling for our children. The book takes us on a journey of self-discovery and growth, showcasing how cycling can be a powerful tool for building confidence and creativity. With vivid descriptions of Jill’s experiences and emotions, the author invites readers to join her on this journey of discovery.

Who might be interested in this book?

The book will appeal to parents who want to present an inspiring narrative for their children to be more confident and engaged with social life through rethinking how they move in the city.

Further details
  • Academic disciplines: Urban cycling and children studies.
  • Geographical scope:
  • Relation to cycling: Cycling is at the center of this book. Through a narrative approach, the book emphasizes the right to free movement for our children and shows how the bicycle can play an important role in the discovery of the self.

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