Rene Vencer, Jr wrote:
I believe it is up to each of us to judge when the right time should be.
Absolutely - a conflict is so much more than what it appears on the surface. A judgement has to be made at the time and you have to live with that judgement.
Maybe this is too early to say, and as above, requires judgement at the time, but if one of the children had been carrying a knife this 7 year old may well be dead now. Letting someone 'attack you a bit' IMHO is not a good strategy. He did well, but there is always luck involved and one small error of judgement can end our life - maybe thats the beauty of Budo though, and that's why aikido (and self-defence) is far more than learning techniques.