Re: what to teach 8 yr old?
I can't imagine why rolling and falling would hurt kids. When I helped with kids classes (close to 4 yrs) 8 yrs old girls were ideal beginners: more focussed than 8 yr old boys, very self-regulating due to interest in rules and order. Rolling skills, games, and techniques without jointlocking/stress all worked really well. Probably the easiest technique to teach was shihonage.