Parents are an essential element to their child’s success in anything. The enthusiasm and support, or lack thereof, of a parent, can make or break a child’s accomplishments. At Gentle East Martial Arts, it is even more essential that parents be involved as part of the team so we know what areas of their child’s physical and psychological development to focus on during classes. This approach can amplify the success of the child as their parents see the impact of the program, are involved in the process and recognize the efforts the child put forth.
Parents who enroll their children in martial arts want to see them succeed but most don’t know what is needed from them to make this happen. Often, children who are in martial arts do not have parents that are martial artists themselves. Parents usually know what the benefits of martial arts are but don’t understand the process of making these benefits a reality. Since the goal of our programs is to help children grow to be the best version of themselves, much emphasis is placed on the teaching team of instructors and parents.
Most of our curriculum is based on the developmental stages of children. The skill requirements for each level were carefully designed to developmentally benefit the child the most while using martial arts as a vehicle to ensure success. Within this system, the child not only learns self-defense, but also develops physically, intellectually, emotionally, and socially.
In our programs, communication is essential to helping children be the most successful. Throughout each testing cycle, information is distributed on the skills that are being taught in a specific week. This helps parents to know what is happening in each class so that should they chose to, they can initiate a conversation with their child about it. During or directly after class, instructors do a quick overview of the skill of the day, with the parents that watching, so they can gain a better understanding of the benefits of the class to the overall development of their child. Therefore, it is important for parents to be present, as often as possible, when their children are taking class.
Since parental involvement is an essential part of this program, the instructors work to educate the parents on the different aspects of the program by providing the quick overviews as well as implementing mat chats during class and using the supplemental program, Parent SKILLZ Facebook Page, as an additional resource. Special class events are also held from time to time, so that parents can participate in class with their child. By doing this, parents are then aware of how they can help their child train at home. This also helps solidify the engagement of the parents in their child’s training, thereby, increasing their child’s excitement and enjoyment of the activity ultimately leading to success.
By fostering a good working relationship with parents, our instructors make certain that parents have the resources they need to help their child. When parents are enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the instruction their child is receiving, they can better help their child navigate through the training process. As an added benefit, the parent-child relationship is nurtured. This ensures success for the child as they develop to be the best version of themselves.