Okay, have this theory about teaching kids. This is not easy to put into words, but I'll give it a shot.
It seems to me that the most successful kids that I have in taekwondo, and that I've seen in the various taekwondo schools I've been in, are the ones where the dojang functions as a kind of haven from their home life.
I'm not saying that these are abused kids finding shelter at the dojang, nothing so extreme as that (although I'm sure that sometimes it happens). What I'm saying is that if taekwondo can exist outside of the realm of doing dishes, getting good grades, and all that other stuff, kids are more interested in it and stay in it longer.
Too often I've seen (as I've discussed here before) parents who can't wait to utter the fatal words "If you just put half the energy you put into taekwondo into your homework/chores/yardwork blah, blah, blah."
And the light goes right out of the kids eyes.
It's an association thing, if parents associate taekwondo with 1)everything the kid already hates, 2)every failure the kid has already had, they'll give it up. Additionally, if taekwondo becomes just another barganing chip between parents and child ("You like taekwondo? You'd better get your grades up, then.") they'll drop it.
Of course, taekwondo can't exist in a total vacuum, but I have just noticed that the further away from the war at home/school it is, the better the kids do in taekwondo. AND I feel that given enough time in taekwondo, enough time to make progress, to see change, to realize the value of hard work, and how much hard work is really 'hard work', I think that kids will bring that into other aspects of their lives.
Does this make any sense to anybody but me? Comments? Thoughts?
Finally got around to looking up LJ communities, and found this cool one! Looks right up my alley - I'm a 30-year-old TKD instructor with about 13 years in TKD, 18 months in Arnis, and about a year in BJJ.
Thought some of you might be interested in a recent post of mine, a description of a fun in-class game we call "Tae Kwon Do Soccer"
Okay, so I picked up this new kid at the start of the year. Fourteen, a little awkward, a little shy. He's a good student, coming along fine.
I found out he had been expelled from school last night for fighting. Or for tripping/fighting... not sure exactly what the deal is.
...great... Now, I don't really know the kid that well (I've seen him five times by now) so I'll reserve judgement/pestering until later, and I'm sure he didn't use taekwondo in this 'fight' since, well, he sucks at it (remember, third week of training).
But I'm sure that his parents (divorced, natch!) will be asking me questions about how I can improve his behavior or instill discipline or something.
Advice? Share similar stories?
My plan is to continue as normal, get to know the kid a bit better, try to determine if he's a two-faced sociopath or not, eventually figure out what happened, try to get him to like taekwondo enough that I can use it as leverage over him, should this behavior keep coming up.
This may be out of place here, but I'm looking for a one-on-one teacher for kung fu or ninjutsu. I live near Philadelphia and if anyone can help me on this one, it would be greatly appreciated ^_^
If its not too much trouble, could you make all comments referring to this post on my LJ? Thank you very much ^o^
So. In my years of teaching, I get lots of ADD/ADHD, general spazes, geeks, and dorks- usually kids.
I usually do a pretty good job with them, assuming (as I said in a previous post) they want to do taekwondo more than they want to practice their passive-aggressive control techniques.
The problem is their parents. Almost all of thier whacked behaviour is a way to deal with their home-life. I see a constant battle of wills between parents and the student.
But, while I can usually enforce boundaries and instill discipline in the student- and they see the rewards of them in improved techniques and better skills, I can't do anything about the parents.
Through the years I've seen it all. Parents who simply can't stand that their kid will listen to me and not them and sabatoge the whole thing (or simply yank them out of class), parents who just can't wait to let success with taekwondo justify expectations for success with EVERYTHING (" now that you're a yellow belt, you should be able to get straight A's, and clean your room, and eat your greens") or can't wait to associate taekwondo with everything the kid hates (now that you're a yellow belt you can finally lose some of the fat, stop being a dork, get some friends, not be such a dweeb."
And just like that, the next day the kid's back to being a total fuck-up.
How do you control the parents? How can you tell them that, yes, martial arts will turn your flunky kid into something better, but that it is a long process, and you have to keep your filthy mitts OFF OF IT for a while. How do tell them that if you reward their hard work in martial arts with more hard work (or the expectation of hard work) they'll immediatly go back to being a dork and a failure- just to regain some sense of control?
Is what I'm saying making any sense? Anybody have any tips?
I have a fellow instructor that has been training at our dojang for
as long as I've been there. She is probably one of the worst
perfectionists I've ever seen. Most of the time, I'm dealing with
students who aren't putting enough into their training. But what does
one do when you have an instructor in your school that is so
motivated to do the best he/she can, that he/she will actually burn themselves out to be able to do it? We've been through everything together, and I've told her that she needs to relax, but telling her doesn't get through to her. How could I show her? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
I am thinking about moving into another form of martial arts i was wondering if you could tell me a good one to look into i have trained in judo for years and a few years in bjj and i have trained in kick boxing at the same time. what would be a good art to expand on what i have already learned i have not mastered any of them by and shot but i would like to try something else any ideas?
ok i just reacntly started teaching some local kids at my community center judo they love it. the only thing is i am young only 18 and none really want to listen to what i have to say. I have studied for a number of years since i was 4, i train everyday. but they just dont listen and when i try to speak up and get there attention they tell there parents i yelled at them and there parents come at me one kids dad tried to fight me a couple weeks ago just cause i sent his kid away he was disrupting the rest of the class. There are a few of them who are accually tring to learn. I would really like some help with these problems if anyone can help.
also i am looking futher my traning but i would like to go into a differant form what would be a good one to try since i have already done a great deal of training in judo?
Okay, I have an issue with my classes. See, I'm a nice guy and all I really ask from my students is that they come to taekwondo to learn and do taekwondo.
Simple, no? Yes!
There is a kind of student, kids usually but not always, who start off coming to class because they like taekwondo, but then it morphs into something... else.
This is more than just the standard short attention span, it is something much more passive-aggressive. They come to class to learn to push against boundaries (mine, other students), they come to see how fast they can get a reaction out of me/their parents/their fellow-students, they complain bitterly about the bag drills, but the moment we're done they start doing something else on the bag (something, not coincidentally, that they thought up themselves), they argue and they whine and they talk all the time, and if you ask them something they mutter in answer under their breath, and they are told not to sit on the floor so they lay down on it, and after being told not to do that, they lean against the wall. They know that thier parents want nothing more than for them to succeed, for once, at something, and that I want nothing more than for them to leave me and my good students in peace.
I think you know the type.
Outside of booting them out, any idea of how I should handle these little narcassists?
An idea that DOESN'T take my time and attention away from my good students.
An idea that DOESN'T force the rest of us to just ignore the jackass while he/she runs amok.
An idea that DOESN'T lead to other parents coming in, taking one look at the problem child and deciding there is no way in hell they are going to let their own kids in with the likes of him.