Articles

Training Children Need Parents Support

2 shaolin kids

Ring ring….

“Warriors Heart Martial Arts School.”

“Hi Sensei, this is Sam Jones’s Dad, I’m calling because Sam seems to be losing interest, he was very happy to get his first grade but his peers seem to have gone up and he’s left behind, I don’t want him to give up but he seems to have lost the ‘buzz’ that he had before…”

“Have you seen the feedback forms that I’ve given to Sam?”

“I know he’s had some – but to be honest I haven’t read them.”

“Okay, the reason that he’s feeling like that is because he doesn’t attend enough lessons and doesn’t get the support he needs at home.”

“That’s not fair, he attends all the classes that the others do.”

“No he doesn’t.  In fact I’m looking at the register right now.  The problem is that you see the other students there when he’s there, but he only attends one class every other week whereas the others are attending a minimum of twice a week and you obviously don’t see them there when you’re not there!”

“But we can’t get him there as often as the others.”

“Then both you and he have to accept a slower rate of progress.”

“Is there nothing more that we can do?”

“Yes.  Firstly you can read the feedback forms that we send you; secondly, you can act on them.  If you had done that and supported his training at home you could probably have made up for some of the classes that Sam hasn’t been able to attend.”

“We do as much as we can, we try to get him to train at home.”

The problem Mr Jones is that he needs support in his home training, nagging him to train won’t do it – it becomes a negative experience.  We give him and the parents that watch their children explicit instructions on what to do at home to improve.”

“We can’t watch him train because we both work and it’s the only time that we can do the shopping…..”

“And you do the shopping every other week?”

“How did you know that?”

“Because that’s the only time he comes training, you don’t watch and support his training and you don’t bother to read the feedback notes that we send back to you to help you support his work at home.  You’re using us a babysitting service whilst you do your biweekly shopping and don’t really have interest in his progress until his attendance is threatened and it interferes with your shopping routine.”

“That’s harsh – everyone is busy these days and has to set a routine!”

“But the other parents watch their children and support and take part in their training at home enjoying the shared experience.  Their children are progressing through the grades and enjoying their martial arts as a positive experience.”

“I have attended some of his classes…”

“No you haven’t.  When you’ve stayed around you’ve been outside the doors talking on your mobile phone and on the rare occasion you’ve stayed in the dojo you’ve been either texting someone on your mobile phone or doing the crossword in your newspaper.”

“It seems that I’d be better off taking him to a club that doesn’t blame the parents for everything!”

“You could take him to a club that takes little interest in him and just acts as a babysitting service for you, or you could begin to take as much interest in him as we do and help him to learn skills that will stand him in good stead for the rest of his life.  We’ve been doing this for over 30 years and have taught thousands of children throughout their childhood, working with the parents and the local education authority to produce confident, healthy young adults.”

“I’m going to have to think about this…..”

“Please do – and include your wife and Sam in the discussion, look at other clubs considering not just your convenience but Sam’s welfare and progress.  Remember he’s not so disappointed in the club as in your lack of support.  You may consider me to be rude but I have Sam’s interest and progress at heart and therefore will tell it as I see it hoping for your support.”

“You were the club that was continually recommended to us by the school and the other parents…”

“Because we have the children’s interests at heart, we’re not children’s entertainers or babysitters – we’ve been here a long time and produced the results.  We are an integrated part of local sport facilities and have a long history of success, with verifiable lineages in our arts, proper coaching qualifications, insurance and CRB checks, we provide good facilities at a reasonable financial rate.  If you watch our classes you can see why what we do works.”

“Well, I have to thank you for your candour at least and I can see that we will need a family meeting to resolve this issue.”

“And I thank you for listening and considering your child’s progress.”

“I’ll speak to you after we’ve had the meeting.”

“Okay bye…”

Click.

“Who was that dear?

“Sam Jones father.”

“Ah – Mr ‘mobile phone’ Jones who squeezes his son into the car full of Tesco bags at the end of a biweekly lesson…..”

“That’s him…”

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