Should Parents Be Allowed to Observe Kids Martial Arts Classes?

Should Parents Be Allowed to Observe Kids Martial Arts Classes?.

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One Response to Should Parents Be Allowed to Observe Kids Martial Arts Classes?

  1. Should Parents Be Allowed to Observe Kids Martial Arts Classes?
    Absolutely Yes.
    I am owner of Okinawan Fighting Arts, a member school of the North American Jiteki-Jyuku Association. Our style is Uechi-Ryu Karate.
    I am a 3rd degree black belt and it is not uncommon to have other black belts assisting. One of the first lessons our youth students learn… at the end of every class… is who the highest ranking person in the room is. For each student the answer to that question is different. The answer is always the same. The highest ranking person in the room is their parent.
    Since I am the owner of the school, I am the highest ranking martial arts instructor (except when I bring in a guest instructor). Ultimately I am the one responsible for teaching them their forms and techniques and martial concepts. I also teach them what traditionally is called budo. It is in this area where I defer position to the associated parent, if they ever wish it of me. I invite them to give me private instruction as to what their child needs to be working on with regards to life skills. It may be focus, it may be looking into the parent/adult’s eyes as they are speaking. It varies from child to child… if the parent desires.
    The only way this works is for the parent to be a student or an observer (at least part of the time more than the 1st and last 5 minutes). Otherwise they do not know what has been worked on, and how…. And, in the process of training the child, frequently it is best to train the adult (even if the adult is not a student). If the parent does not reinforce what I teach, my teaching can not reinforce what they teach.
    I will admit, there have been 2 students where for a while, it was better for the parent to not be there for the entire class. With time it became good for the parent to return.
    Richard Liebespach,
    Sandan Uechi-Ryu Karate
    Member of the North American Jiteki-Jyuku Association Board of Directors

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