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#401050 - 07/02/08 08:08 AM Small Rant...
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
I got to get this off my chest. I'm really mad about it.

Friday is a holiday so the regular Karate classes for that day are cancelled. The students from those classes are allowed to come to any other class to make up the time. Yesterday were three "normal" classes. My son taught the first class. A normal class is about 6-8 young kids. Yesterday there were 15. Just the Sensei and my son. Sensei had to man the phones for most of the class which left my son alone. None of the other instructors showed up.

It seemed every kid forgot his dose of Ridlin. Chaos was an understatement. One kid had to visit his mother every 5 minutes, another had to turn around and wave to his mother. A third had to go to the bathroom or get a drink of water or adjust his belt every two minutes. And one little girl had to hug my son every chance she got. And so on.

My son separated the higher ranks and sent them off to the side to practice their Bo forms. Which left him all the white belts. No one wanted to co-operate. And to top it off, one of the mothers decided to complain about my sons poor teaching. (While her own son was a royal pain which she totally ignored.) She was one of the Friday class that showed up.
Sensei tried to explain that the class was oversized due to parents showing up un-announced. That it would have been preferred if the parents called so thay could be notified if the class was overbooked or not. (Right over her head)
Also that they were short on instructors for the class. Also over her head. All she did was complain.

I asked my son about it after class. About discipling the kids or something. his first reaction was "what, and loose the kids?" I kind of get his point. The school is there to make money, not loose students/parents.

So I guess after all my ranting, my question is..how do you controll the uncontrollable? How do you get little kids to behave, listen to you? (when all they do is the complete opposite of what you tell them) As a parent, I can understand not getting forcefull with young kids so their parents don't complain, but geez. Last night I wanted to tell my son to get his Katana.

Oh, and at the end of class, two instructors showed up. One came from work, the other from her college class. Another instructor who usually helps out is a firefighter. He's there when his schedule allows. No one is really definite there. But the rule is, two instructors per class.
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401051 - 07/02/08 08:15 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
Zyranyth Offline
Member

Registered: 09/13/06
Posts: 188
Loc: Finland
From my experience, you don't control them when their parents are around. I think its for the better that the parents aren't present while the kids are there. Have them do a bit of arm presses when they get out of line, and most importantly, just keep them busy doing things. They're kids after all, and their attention span is probably shorter than mine (and mine is really short!).
_________________________
"Only a warrior chooses pacifism; others are condemned to it. "

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#401052 - 07/02/08 08:38 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Zyranyth]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
So how do you tell a parent to leave so you can discipline their kid? I would prefer the parent be there rather than have the parent drop the kid off and have the Dojo act as a baby sitting service. At least this way, there is some control coming from the parent. The child can't really get away with anything if their mother is sitting right there watching. (for whatever good that does. I've seen one child have a temper tantrum in the middle of class and the mother totally ignored him. Too busy talking to her friend.)
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401053 - 07/02/08 09:13 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Sensei has his priorities messed up. 'Man the phones?' That is what voicemail is for. Or come in early, or stay afterwards to deal with the messages. Two people on the floor means two people on the floor. I've been in this situation myself...where a boss schedules himself as a necessary body on the floor...and then does admin stuff instead...leaving the regular staff to carry his weight.

As for discipline...you are railing against the wind. No sixteen year old is going to get respect from a crowd/gang...especially when the parents there give tacit approval for such behavior. I've been in a McDojo where my son was abused in just the same way...and while the rest of the yuppie parents sat there reading, and ignoring the mess, got off my butt and had to get onto the mat to reestablish control.

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#401054 - 07/02/08 09:28 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: harlan]
dandjurdjevic Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 05/10/08
Posts: 844
Loc: Australia
Way to go Narda!
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http://www.dandjurdjevic.com/

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#401055 - 07/02/08 09:57 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
JasonM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 2502
You should talk to the parents or sensei should. And worse case is, tell the parents their kids have to miss class because they are not listening. Noone wants to loose students but you don't want an uncontrollable class. Also, maybe your son should not be teaching young kids just yet. Especially, with the parents there because a parent, I am guessing is not going to listen or take the avice of a 16 year old. Which is why I mentioned senei should probably talk to the parents.

Also, he never should have been "manning" the phones, That is just crazy. I think if manning the phone was of the utmost importance to Sensei, he should have put your son in there to play secratary.
_________________________
90 percent of good abs is your nutrition

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#401056 - 07/02/08 10:03 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: JasonM]
Zyranyth Offline
Member

Registered: 09/13/06
Posts: 188
Loc: Finland
An alternative I saw someone successfully use on pre-teenage kids at one of my previous dojos, was that he told them that they will not do anything before they shut up and listen. A minute later, everyone was giving him their full attention.
_________________________
"Only a warrior chooses pacifism; others are condemned to it. "

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#401057 - 07/02/08 10:46 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Zyranyth]
BigJim Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/17/08
Posts: 15
Loc: Arizona
First I would say a 16 year old might not be ready for a class full of kids, he certainly should have had an adult instructor on the floor.

Second, authority is often taken or earned, not givien. This goes for the parents and the kids. Now you may differ on he method but it worked very well for us back in Illinois when I trained and was a junior instructor. The parents were told when they signed up the kids, this is no joke, this is not play time. As much as we would make it fun for the kids and encourage them etc, bad behavior was not tolerated period. The class was held in a military type environment and the kids knew there were consequences for their actions. Did some kids cry, yes. Did some parents pull their kids, yes. But overall the vast majority thanked us and most of the kids had alot of fun, learned to follow the rules.

FYI parents were not allowed to watch most classes, they don't sit in school with them, why should get to watch Karate class. Before they signed up they could watch a few classes of other kids, to see how it was done but once their kids were students, it was invitation only.

I guess my point is the Dojo is not a playground, my instructor would tell parents this is how it's done here, if you don't like it there are plenty of places down the street the kids can jump around all they want. Maybe I am wrong but in todays world of out of control kids, a school with a rep for disipline and no BS might appeal to a lot of parents.

Let me also mention he was a teacher himself, so he had a lot of experience in managing large groups of kids and how to walk the line of firm, fair and fun so kids were well behaved but not miserable.

My 2 cents.

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#401058 - 07/02/08 11:02 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: BigJim]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
Thanks for the input. (Even the small comment from the Peanut Gallery). My son has been teaching classes for the past 6 months. With help and without. As mentioned, this class was unusually large. He normally does not have a problem. One thing I just thought of was that half these kids were from Fridays class. The kids and the parents don't know my son. I guess for new kids, you have to earn respect before you get any. My son does not teach Fridays classes.

Another post I remember reading mentioned to tire the kids out so they settle down. I'm thinking running laps around the mat. Jumping jacks or something easy the kids can do, right at the start for warm ups.

But then again, hopefully after the holiday, everything will settle down. (and as of April 30, he's 17. One more step towards age, wisdom and maturity)...and driving.
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401059 - 07/02/08 11:29 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
BigJim Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/17/08
Posts: 15
Loc: Arizona
Quote:

My son has been teaching classes for the past 6 months. With help and without. As mentioned, this class was unusually large. He normally does not have a problem.




I certainly was not commenting on your son's teaching ability, I hope you did not read it that way. My comment was about as a 16 year old, with a room full of parents and an oversized class getting out of control, he should have had some adult back up. It's very hard for a kid to take control with parents, probably 2 times his age being as unruly and the rug rats.

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#401060 - 07/02/08 11:57 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: BigJim]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
Quote:

Quote:

My son has been teaching classes for the past 6 months. With help and without. As mentioned, this class was unusually large. He normally does not have a problem.




I certainly was not commenting on your son's teaching ability, I hope you did not read it that way. My comment was about as a 16 year old, with a room full of parents and an oversized class getting out of control, he should have had some adult back up. It's very hard for a kid to take control with parents, probably 2 times his age being as unruly and the rug rats.




No problem. But just to let you know, since my son got his Black Belt in December, he is required to put in 11 hrs a month teaching time. He also has two adult classes, Tuesday and Thursday night that he teaches. Not one adult has had a problem with him. It seems that the older the student is, the more respect they give my son. 9 yrs of training does count for something. And there should have been two instructors per class, which didn't happen yesterday. Not counting the Sensei.
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401061 - 07/02/08 12:24 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
BigJim Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/17/08
Posts: 15
Loc: Arizona
Quote:

Not one adult has had a problem with him. It seems that the older the student is, the more respect they give my son. 9 yrs of training does count for something.




Well I imagine as students they can see the vaule and skill that 9 years of training brings, problem I see is that the parents you mentioned are not students so they probably just see a 16 year old kid. What would irk me is that instead of coming to his aide and helping get their kids in line, they joined in against him, undermining his authority.

But even with 9 years training and great teaching ability, at the end of the day he still 16, 9 years before he is done growing so for the Sensei to put him in that positon just is not reasonable, and you have every right to rant!

Then again, probably a great learning experience.

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#401062 - 07/02/08 02:50 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: BigJim]
tkd_high_green Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 1031
Loc: Vermont
When a young student misbehaves, they are given a warning. If they do it again, pushups. If they continue the behavior, they are given a timeout in one of the corners. The length of the timeout based on the age and severity of the infraction. Only once have I had to give a timeout to the entire class. They behaved after that.

When new students come in, I am very quick now to inform them of the rules if they break one, and explaining why we do something. I think too often kids are just told "don't do that!" without knowing why they shouldn't do something. After that, I'm swift on enforcing those rules.

I rarely have a problem anymore. Nor have I ever lost a student or upset a parent because I've had to send their child to the corner for misbehaving.

Laura

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#401063 - 07/02/08 05:56 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: tkd_high_green]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
LOL @ "time out in the corner."
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#401064 - 07/03/08 01:07 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA
marmaduke

Just because I'm a worrier (or OCD AND paranoid ) when they require your son to teach do they:

A-give him a break on HIS tution?

B-Is he added to the schools insurence?

I have personal problems with the former--esp if its requirement instead of a request.....for 2 reasons:

1-I pay my money to the TEACHER and with all respect to your son, and I'm quite sure he is skilled--I pay my hard earned coin to the guy/gal running the place--I don't pay so I can get a brand new shodan (ie a "free teacher" to the owner) to teach me...the guy/gal that signs me up teachs me or I get a refund or a discount.
Sure that pretty rough...but signing up for lessons with "Master Po" and instead getting his student (no matter how good he is supposed to be) would be "bait and switch" in any other venue.

(I know you PAID for a Lexus...but trust me this Hyundai is going to be really good for you until your "good enough" to be able to handle the Lexus. )

Every now and then? Sure that's cool....but as a regular thing? No way.

2-I have issues that essentially require work for a PAYING student...I don't have a problem helping keep the place clean...but I ain't teaching for free while the owner spends HIS time on the phone making more money FOR HIMSELF...I better be getting a price break OR a share of the profits.

Now its different story if I just feel like helping..its the "required" part that I have issues with.....its a VERY slippry slope.....and indentured servitude rubs me the wrong way.

B-This is the more serious of the 2--if your boy is teaching, he NEEDS to be listed on the school policy--or there needs to be explicit verbage in the policy itself to cover him....and I'd greatly prefer being named specifically.

I have seen people get hung out to dry over "oversights" like that.

You probably have already checked this out and your A-OK, like I said, just a worrier.


Edited by cxt (07/03/08 01:13 AM)
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#401065 - 07/03/08 04:51 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: cxt]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
Quote:

marmaduke

do they:

A-give him a break on HIS tution?

B-Is he added to the schools insurence?






B-Yes. Checked that out when he became a Black Belt and started teaching.

A-Actually, as long as he puts in 11 teaching hours a month, he's free. I don't have to pay. If he puts in less, then I have to pay for the whole month. Doesn't sound too bad but, during school, his homework and Honor Society meetings came first. Plus whenever he got sick. It was cutting it close at times.

I remember when he first had to start teaching, one class got to him and he just walked off the matt and sat in the bathroom for a while to cool off. He got talked to after that one, but he has come a long way. He actually enjoys teaching the little kids.

He tries. He's learning.

Oh. And as his instructor always tells me, my son is dependable. Thats a great help to him. Since school is out, I try and get him there as often as possible.

We have one Black Belt who left after his wife had a baby.
Another left. Mabe comes in once every three months.
One went to Japan.
One-Comes and goes.
One moved to Texas.
Last one is a firefighter. He comes when his schedule allows.
And the "school mascot". She's a Purple Belt and usually teaches the New students. (Their 2 free lessons)


Edited by marmaduke (07/03/08 04:59 AM)
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401066 - 07/03/08 11:11 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA
marmaduke

Cool....always best to be on the policy.

"as long as he is teaching, he's free"

If your going to require the time THAT is how it should be done. ...least I think so.
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#401067 - 07/03/08 06:52 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: cxt]
TKD_X Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 786
Loc: HERE
i agree that your sensei should have been on the mats. if not on the mats, in a place where he could have seen if your son needed help. it's uncalled-for for him to put your son out there alone. i understand the situation your son is in completely. i am 16, i help teach a beginners class every monday, AND i just got done running a 5-day 9-3 TKD summer camp with my mom and brother. i know what it is like to have a bunch of screaming uncontrollable kids in front of you. was it because of the holiday that there were whitebelts and students that are advanced enough to do bo staff in the same class? splitting up the ranks was a good idea. half the people doing bo staff is NOT a good idea when the other half are unattentive white belts that like to run and say hi to mommy. i have found that the best way to get all of the kids on the same page is to start without some of them. they see that they are being left out and they join in. use the good kids as examples. praise the good kids for doing what they are supposed to and the less attentive kids, out of desire to receive the same praise, follow suit. if your son is ever placed in that same situation, tell him to tell your sensei that he would prefer him to stay on the mats.
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Are you ok!?!? It was an accident! No really! I promise!

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#401068 - 07/19/08 02:44 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
hedkikr Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 2827
Loc: Southern California, USA
Over the years, my kids' class population has ranged from 12 to 40 & I'm the only instructor. Occasionally I have a few "clowns", "attention-seekers" & "ADHD-angels", but I'm firm yet fair w/ discipline.

If Joey is doing everything except karate, I invite him to sit it out because it's obvious he doesn't want to be there. As I tell him to sit-out, I also tell him that he can re-join the class whenever he wants, 3 seconds, 3 minutes or never...it's his decision. Through it all, I insist on respect, maintaining the dignity of karate and earnest effort.

Also, my minimum age is 7. Anything younger & the school/instructor is getting what he/she deserves.

I have to disagree about preventing parents from observing. The majority of parents will back you up if you're doing a good job. No parents (witnesses) and it's your word against that bratty liar who knows he can manipulate his mom to cause a stink for him. Heaven forbid little Jessica accuses you of sexual misconduct. You're ship is sunk - guilty or not. AND as a parent, I PAID for the instruction, I'm interested in the activity, I get to be proud of my little-guy and I'm a better parent than those who simply drop-off the rug-rat for some cheap- baby-sitting.

Finally, I think that you're a bit over-protective of your 17 y/o son. I know I've been away for a while but a lot of your posts seem to be about YOUR worries & concerns. Has your boy logged on yet? I can tell that you're a good father but give that leash a bit more slack.

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#401069 - 07/19/08 06:38 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: hedkikr]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
Quote:


Finally, I think that you're a bit over-protective of your 17 y/o son. I know I've been away for a while but a lot of your posts seem to be about YOUR worries & concerns. Has your boy logged on yet? I can tell that you're a good father but give that leash a bit more slack.




Yea, I'm overprotective. Shoot me. As I mentioned a while ago, I had heart suergery several years ago. I also have Diabietes. I work 56hrs+ a week. My wife works 3rd shift. She sleeps during the day and most of the night. I try/want to spend time with my son while I still can. During his teaching time at the Dojo, I sit and waite for him. Sometimes 3-5 hrs. Most of the time I fall asleep. Sensei keeps joking he'll get me a mat to sleep on one day.

And no, he hasn't logged on yet. We still have dial-up at home. (Trying to get something faster, but right now can't afford what their asking. (Very limited in my area)). Right now, I use the computers at work for all internet stuff. I do his browsing, I get large downloads that he asks for, videos, game patches, whatever.
_________________________
It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

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#401070 - 07/19/08 01:25 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
hedkikr Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 2827
Loc: Southern California, USA
No, I don't shoot any one who has their priorities in the right order. But take care of yourself - you're a lot more valuable to your son alive than sick or...

In fact, maybe a snooze in car will do a lot more for both you & your son. More dads should have your kind of dedication.
_________________________
Ed Ichihara Smith - Shukokai

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#401071 - 07/21/08 01:26 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
JasonM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 2502
Good job on doing what you do but is sounds like your wife should pitch in to. I work two full time jobs, 80+ hours a week, and spend as much time with 4 kids and my wife helps outs. That fact that she spends most time sleeping with just one job is disturbing.

Plus, I can't understand wanting to spend as much time with him, but I think that shouldn't lead to overprotecting. Or l ike I like to call smothering. I have noticed and believe to much overproction does nothing for them when they go out on their own. Sorry but pop the t&ttie out of his mouth and let him be a man...
_________________________
90 percent of good abs is your nutrition

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#401072 - 07/21/08 01:35 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
JAMJTX Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/01/02
Posts: 585
Loc: Fort Wayne, IN
you pretty much answered your own question when you said "the school is there to make money".
There is no money to be made in disciplining kids. They are there to be entertained and taken off of their parents hands for a little while.
You are operating under the false assumption that your son is a martial arts teacher. He is employed by a McDojo as a baby sitter.
The only other option would be for him to go to a martial arts school.

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#401073 - 07/21/08 12:26 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: JAMJTX]
tkd_high_green Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 1031
Loc: Vermont
Having re read the initial post, I have a couple of comments to make.

First off, it appears that class sizes are relatively small, which does allow for more personalized attention. 6 to 8 students per class is tiny.

Secondly, a larger class of 15 is really not all that big either, but can be very overwhelming if you've never taught a class that size.

Based on the age and behavior of your son, it would appear that he is relatively inexperienced at teaching, and unfortunately part of learning how to teach is learning how to maintain discipline in a larger class and how to ignore the parents.

When I started teaching, I think the hardest part for my instructor was letting us make mistakes when we were teaching and not immediately jumping in and "saving us". The counter at our school was situated in such a way that I could keep watch of my senior instructor and I could tell how I was doing based on his body language. While it might appear to anyone else that he wasn't paying attention to the class, he was always fully aware of what was going on.

Your son should take this opportunity to talk to the senior instructor and find out his opinion on what he could have done better to maintain control of the class and chalk it up to a learning experience. And if your son feels any need to discuss the "joys" of learning to teach with anyone, tell him he is more than welcome to contact me.

I wish him the best of luck in the future.

Laura

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#401074 - 07/21/08 12:57 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: tkd_high_green]
marmaduke Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 177
Loc: Ohio
Quote:

Having re read the initial post, I have a couple of comments to make.

First off, it appears that class sizes are relatively small, which does allow for more personalized attention. 6 to 8 students per class is tiny.

Secondly, a larger class of 15 is really not all that big either, but can be very overwhelming if you've never taught a class that size.

Based on the age and behavior of your son, it would appear that he is relatively inexperienced at teaching, and unfortunately part of learning how to teach is learning how to maintain discipline in a larger class and how to ignore the parents.

When I started teaching, I think the hardest part for my instructor was letting us make mistakes when we were teaching and not immediately jumping in and "saving us". The counter at our school was situated in such a way that I could keep watch of my senior instructor and I could tell how I was doing based on his body language. While it might appear to anyone else that he wasn't paying attention to the class, he was always fully aware of what was going on.

Your son should take this opportunity to talk to the senior instructor and find out his opinion on what he could have done better to maintain control of the class and chalk it up to a learning experience. And if your son feels any need to discuss the "joys" of learning to teach with anyone, tell him he is more than welcome to contact me.

I wish him the best of luck in the future.

Laura




My son has taught 15 or more in the past. Those students were willing to listen and learn. As mentioned, half of the students he had that day were from a different class. He is not their normal instructor. (Plus they missed their Ridlin dose)

Since that class, the instructor keeps his eye on the training method. After every class, he does have some comments for my son. (How to handle this or that child, teach this instead of this, etc.)

As you said, my son is learning to teach. Its one of his future requirements to learn to teach. If you don't mind being pestered, I'm pass on your comments to him.

Thanks.
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#401075 - 07/21/08 01:01 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: JAMJTX]
everyone Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/02/07
Posts: 597
Loc: USA
Have to agree with JAMJST. What you have here is a McDojo Daycare.


Try to find a less commercial school.

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#401076 - 07/21/08 07:57 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: everyone]
clmibb Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/31/06
Posts: 1035
Loc: South Texas, US
marmaduke, my mom was a preschool teacher for 19 years. When she had a "problem student", she would have them hold her hand and follow her around the class room, completely ignoring him/her, as she continued throughout her normal routine. Most of the time after that, all she had to do is ask the child if they neede to hold her hand. The answer was always, "No ma'am". It works better on boys than it does girls (girls enjoy the individual attention too much and feel more like "teacher's helper" than someone who just got in trouble).

I've adopted the same discipline method for the boys in my class (there's only about 4 girls in class and are all very well behaved). All I have to do is ask if they have some strange urge to hold my hand or do they think they can settle down and quit disturbing the group. I have yet have a boy WANT to come up and hold my hand . It's just another discipline suggestion in case he's not comfortable giving push-ups or there's kids in class that actually ENJOY push-ups (like in my class).

The others on here are right, the head instructor should have been on the floor especially after seeing how big the class was.

Casey
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#401077 - 07/22/08 09:54 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Marmaduke:

Apologies for missing this one. Remind me how old is your son again???

<<Yesterday there were 15.

A perfectly normal class size, for an adult instructor. Students on the floor are the O-N-L-Y priority, the teacher made a foolish mistake.

<<Chaos was an understatement.

Chaos is what we do... the ability to handle it well is the mark of the professional instructor versus something else. The wandering, water, bathroom, hug routines are relatively easy to adjust. He absolutely must keep and hold their attention for no more than 5 minutes.

<<No one wanted to co-operate.

What does that mean?

<<one of the mothers decided to complain about my sons poor teaching.

Something in particular? He is a fairly young man if memory serves... she had the wrong complaint.

<<oversized due to parents showing up un-announced.



Sigh, the instructor needs to be taught how to respond better. Even if that is/was the case, you cannot, cannot put it that way! It makes it seem that parents were the problem... noooo it was his hideous lack of adult staffing was the only issue. His response was "over her head" because that is not HER concern. She brought little Timmy in one of the time slots that was "acceptable". Not her or your sons fault many did so.

<<All she did was complain.

What about ? There is a strong difference between attempting to impose order over a class and punishing a class. They are radically different creatures.

<<how do you control the uncontrollable?



With serious courage and massive insanity! Most times the kids bounce between mommy, the cooler, and whatever else the particular issues might be at that second, I propose they were not DOING enough. Or perhaps not enough geared specifically for their AGE!

To keep them from playing "mommy pinball" he might have explained he was teaching them how to be BIG kids... And that the BIG kids he teaches watch him ALL the time. SO they can SEE what he is showing them...

" Eyes on ME please... Jimmy..." "...Jimmy go give your mommy one really, really big hug and then come back until class is done, go ahead..."

You make 100% certain they understand they will be asked to WATCH the class if they are actually disruptive. But the descriptions sound like many, many of the classes I teach.
The class period itself must be geared for the age.

Waving to mommy is benign if once, repeatedly, he needs reminded in a friendly way mommy can't teach him, and needs to "...do what I am doing..." There are word games, behavior mod. 101 but overall it sounds like he was literally overrun.

Asking them in a group to DO specific things you essentially are playing "freeze tag" and coming to see if they are doing it great or super great. In a very young group, you have to make the repetition a game of some kind. A back and forth between your son and them. "...ok, everyone have a seat... who thinks they can show me a great LOW BLOCK..." and you go around the line/circle and pick volunteers out. Praise them.

Line drills become COPY the grown up...

You ask them simple questions and get them to raise their hands with the answer. More than 5 minutes doing rote will crush the age I suspect you are speaking of. It has to be sneaky, and ingenious to get them to do XYZ correctly.
All kinds of games he can "bastardize" to make them martial & appropriate. It is NOT about doing games, but about their learning. "... if everyone does their BEST... we will play XYZ game if we have TIME. If anybody is fooling, we won't play..."

There will be foolers and simply point out "...Johnny, you classmates will not be happy if YOUR fooling means they cannot play..."

All kinds of tricks.

The fact you mention he sent off the "senior kids" with WEAPONS to practice scares me in ways I cannot begin to verbalize. If there are weapons ANYWHERE, it must be 10,000% supervised by you or I (adults) no matter how rubber, how "practice" they might well be. Just too many things that can go wrong even with them. What happens if
Greg hits Kenny whether accidentily or on purpose, could your son disarm them harming neither? Could he make the room freeze on command? Is he aware of kids who are bad partners and likely result in bad things happening...

Teaching is almost never the physical, but how different groups, kids interact. ADD, all manner of different conditions have to be part of the lesson plan and how the lines, activities are formed.

Your description overall badly concerns me on numerous levels I'm afraid...

Merely my opinion, I could surely be mistaken,
Jeff


Edited by Ronin1966 (07/22/08 10:07 PM)

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#401078 - 07/22/08 10:17 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: BigJim]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Bigjim:

This answer is EASY.

We do not undergo the same scrutiny and none of the supervision "government/state wise" that classroom teachers do. There is no background check on us. As such I'm not leaving my kid with you (generic) alone, and anybody who does is asking for avoidable trouble...

On that basis I understand why parents want to watch. IMHO should watch more often than not... if they become the distraction they are asked to watch from the hall.

But militant discipline is NOT a great answer. There are other approaches not based fundamentally on fear and punishment.

Jeff

(edited by tkd_high_green at Ronin1966's request)


Edited by tkd_high_green (07/23/08 09:16 AM)

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#401079 - 07/22/08 11:02 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Ronin1966]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Point of information, did not intend you specifically (if there was any doubt) meant simply that any of us potentially could be a potential "wacko", molester, etc., etc.

In that manner, any of us SHOULD be watched by any parent who wishes to do so at any time they wish it.

Apologize for my potentially poor explaination previously...

Jeff

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#401080 - 10/06/08 03:11 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
Jeff_G Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/06
Posts: 222
Loc: Midwest
This was a good description of a class I would run into once in a while: Ten kids in the room and not one brain active. This is where I reached into my bag and pulled out the balloons. The parents were put to work blowing up enough for each kid. We did races and games. The best one was to keep the balloon off the floor, kicks only. They did two hundred kicks before they knew what was happening.

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#401081 - 10/06/08 09:51 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Jeff_G]
tkd_high_green Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 1031
Loc: Vermont
Jeff, could you go into more detail on the various drills you did with the balloons? Thanks!

Laura

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#401082 - 10/16/08 06:25 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: marmaduke]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Marmaduke:

<<If you don't mind being pestered, I'm pass on your comments to him.

Ancient thread worth revisiting IMHV. Just wanted to check back in on this topic, see how things were going for your son? I know we've danced before at times over this type of thing (given your original statement-sentiment re: the money factor aspect apparently we're on the ~same page~ again) merely checking in this time.



Jeff

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#401083 - 10/16/08 06:29 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Jeff_G]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello My Namesake:

<<We did races and games... They did two hundred kicks before they knew what was happening.



Good topic wrong place...

Jeff

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#401084 - 10/16/08 06:31 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: tkd_high_green]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Laura:

How bout a thread (a different thread) for this one rather than contamination of Marmaduke's sons plight

Jeff

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#421873 - 08/26/09 02:55 AM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Ronin1966]
Jeff_G Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/06
Posts: 222
Loc: Midwest
Originally Posted By: Ronin1966
Hello My Namesake:

<<We did races and games... They did two hundred kicks before they knew what was happening.

<img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/arg hijack.gif" alt="" />

Good topic wrong place...

Jeff


I beg to differ. I may not have gone into enough depth about how the balloons work but I stand by their effectiveness in certain situations.


So I guess after all my ranting, my question is..how do you controll the uncontrollable? How do you get little kids to behave, listen to you? (when all they do is the complete opposite of what you tell them) As a parent, I can understand not getting forcefull with young kids so their parents don't complain, but geez. Last night I wanted to tell my son to get his Katana.


The trick is in engagement. If you re-direct the attenion of the students to something more fun, albeit productive, they stand a better chance of not wanting to wander off the floor and actually want to do the task at hand. In addition, if you bring the parents into the action, they tend to be happier also.

All in all, Marmaduke, I would view the class, and its attendent frustrations, as a learning moment.

Perhaps I failed to get to the verb. What do the balloons DO to help the situation? I don't think we really control the uncrontollable so much as re-direct it.

Jeff G.

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#421878 - 08/26/09 12:01 PM Re: Small Rant... [Re: Jeff_G]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA
Jeff

Good advice!...esp the "re-direct it" part.

Part of the problem is that sometimes/often people bring their kids to a MA school to learn some "discipline"----problem being of course how you can teach such a thing without hacking off the parents and/or if they don't support the lessons at home.

Puts the teacher in a tough spot.
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