Off the Mat – Training Tested
in the Real World
“Happy New (School) Year!”
It’s that time of year again…the start to a new year. A new school year, that is. A “New Year” conjures up thoughts of a fresh start, a new beginning, a time to reflect on what you are happy with and what you hope to change. As a teacher, I always thought of myself as lucky because I technically have two New Years—one on January 1st and one at the end of August. While the New Year in January might be used to make a fresh start with things in my personal life, the New Year in August gives me a chance at a fresh start in my “school life”—a chance to work with a new group of students, use new materials, try new teaching and learning strategies—a chance to reuse what worked in the past and rework what didn’t—a fresh start.
A New Year is also great because kids get this same opportunity at two New Year’s too! They get a new classroom, a new teacher, and a new group of peers to learn with and learn from. They get the opportunity to decide whether not they want to make changes. They can keep the same study habits, same organizational approaches, same homework strategies, same behavioral practices that they used last school year, regardless of what worked to their benefit (like preparing for a test over the course of a week), or did not (doing the entire science project the night before it is due). Or, they can look back at the past school years and say- “I really liked having a planner to keep my homework organized, I might try that again this year,” and “Yeah, it wasn’t such a good idea to keep my lunch in my desk for 3 weeks, maybe I shouldn’t do that again!”.
I would encourage parents to help their children reflect on their school habits and behaviors to see what works and what doesn’t. The ability to reflect on our lives is a powerful tool that has many benefits: it can help us to learn from our mistakes; it can give us bigger and better ideas; it can help us help others as we share what we learn through the act of reflection; it can help us see things through a new perspective; and it can make us happier as we reflect on and celebrate our successes in life. Parents have the golden opportunity to teach their children the art of self-reflection, and shape them into positive, thoughtful, and reflective individuals.
I would also encourage kids to keep in mind some of the things we talk about on the mat in karate, and try them out in their classroom this school year- things like: focusing your eyes, mind, and body while the teacher is talking; showing respect and self-control while someone else is talking; listening attentively; showing support for your classmates; and always trying to do your best. Thinking about these things we do during class, and, more importantly, why we do them, can help kids see their benefits to them as students, both in and out of the classroom.
Now is a chance for a fresh start and an opportunity for kids to decide how this school year will play out: what kind of student do you want to be and what do you have to do to get there?
Quote of the Week
“It is not work that kills men, it is worry. Work is healthy; you can hardly put more on a man than he can bear. But worry is rust up on the blade. it is not movement that destroys the machinery, but friction.”
-Harry Ward Beecher
Students Gain Value
at the Adult Street Fighting Seminar
Students took some lessons from Master Dan yesterday, on how to identify and handle potentially dangerous situations in our Adult Street Fighting Seminar!
Students: Maria S., Sam M., Kristin V., Sarah L., Max M., Nicole C., Lynn M., Eric N., Kailen P. (not pictured), and Master Dan.
Due to the success and high value of information delivered at this seminar, we will be adding a follow-up in September, which will have a maximum of 10 students. Don’t miss your opportunity to participate – get on the list today! The cost for participation is $20, and spaces are already filling!
Refer a Friend, Win a T-Shirt!
We will be giving away a t-shirt to everyone who refers a friend onto the Beginner Program (3 weeks of training and a uniform for $79!) throughout the month of August! This is the LAST WEEK for this offer!
Training is more fun when you have a buddy on the mat beside you. Simply have your friend email Kailen in order to get started (and be sure they remember to mention your name!).