The girls had their first ice skating lessons today.
Katie's lesson was first. Tiffany skated around by herself for that half hour on the other end of the ice rink. I didn't know learning to ice skate was so difficult. There were about 6 children in Katie's class. They had a lot of trouble even moving forward on the ice. They were given a short off the ice lesson on how to fall, how to get up, how to regain balance, etc. Then they were each given a glider- a walker without wheels to help them with balance. At first, the children marched, but didn't go anywhere. It took them a little while to learn how to actually go forward. Soon, the gliders were taken away and they marched on the ice without them. There were a lot of spectacular falls.
Tiffany had a lot of spectacular falls, herself. She could actually propel herself along. I think the roller skating had a lot to do with that. Ice skating is apparently quite different. About 2 minutes before her lesson , she had a hard fall on the back of her head. She got a pretty good sized lump. We put some ice on it, the swelling went down a bit, then she went out for her lesson 5 or 10 minutes later. Her confidence waned, however, so she used a glider for the first bit. The instructor talked her into abandoning it, and she was able to learn to do a little hop and to glide by moving her feet in and out. There was only one other person in Tiffany's class. The instructor wrote lines on the ice, and the girls skated them. At the end of the lesson, the instructor blew bubbles and the girls skated around popping them.
After the lessons, I allowed the girls to skate another 30 minutes before we had to leave. They both skated with gliders. I wasn't too worried about that, because I figure they'll still develop skills with the gliders that will help them be better skaters. Katie got much better at moving herself across the ice, and the falls weren't quite so bad. Neither girl wanted to leave when it was time to go, they wanted to stay and skate all day.