Robert Fulton (formerjarhead) wrote:
I am looking for some ideas on how to teach young kids. My youngest daughter (5) and her cousin (also 5) want to start Aikido in our dojo. My other daughter (10) and her cousin (8) started about 2 months ago . Since we have no class for kids my wife and I will teach them but we are not really sure how to keep their interest in it, I don't think they will learn like the adults do. The older ones train with the rest of the class. We have thought of a few rolling games and the Basic moves but we would like some more for the younger ones. There is a book called, "Ah...to be a kid (Aikido Games)", but it's out of print. If anyone has any ideas PLEASE pass them along to us.
I have that book, although as yet I haven't read it, but aim to. From my experience, you teach the younger ones just the same, it just takes a little more patience. Little ones need encouragement and praise with a good amount of discipline. Kids learn nothing but basics for the first 6 mths...things like moving out of the way from strikes, how to fall from a push forwards and backwards, and basic technique to teach them direction. It's also good to explain why they are learning what they are learning "you are learning this technique this way, because later it looks like this, and you aren't ready for that yet". I have a six yr old (and a few others) who are going for 8th kyu, been with us 1.5 yrs, they love it!!
I have a few other thoughts here
I think go for it, there is a lot to learn from teaching children.
All the best