Educating children with martial arts

by on Wednesday, 27 February 2008 Comments

I have been an English teacher for several years in Taipei, Taiwan. I taught in Nankang, NeiHu, Mucha, JingMae, Hsintien, GuTing, and LanYa in ShiLin. I taught various levels and ages of children who were in preschool to senior high school. The youngest class was a yoyo ban with children that were 2 1/2 years old. The oldest class was a class composed of junior and senior high students. I had a wide range of students and classes mostly at the preschool and elementary level.

Before teaching English in Taiwan, I was the Chief Instructor of the Spokane Ki Society. It is a school that teaches a martial art known as Aikido which concentrates on mind and body co-ordination along with self defense. I taught the adult and children classes. In the children classes, I had the opportunity to meet and help a lot of children from all sorts of backgrounds. I like children. They like to play and have fun. Sure, sometimes they get into trouble, but that is what learning to grow up is all about. Sometimes when you fall getting up can be a learning experience. Knowing what it is to be a positive person and how to correct ones own mistakes or to prevent future ones is a valuable lesson for the future. That is what children are. They are our future.

The role of a teacher to a student is first to be a teacher. Second, the teacher can be a friend or mentor. In todays society, often the mother and the father are both working and are very busy, so for the preschool aged children, the teacher often has more quality time with the children than do the parents. In this case, a lot of children are raised and brought up due to the help from the teachers, but by no means can a teacher really ever take the place of a parent. Some children experienced a loss of a parent due to divorce or death. Sometimes, these children have a psychological need to fill that emotional place in their lives. Often the teacher and the students looking up to the teacher both help in filling that hole of a lost loved one, but again no one can really replace a mother or father. A teacher can just help with the needs of a student.

When teaching preschool children, I helped the children learn everything there was to know or needed to know for that age from how to brush their teeth to how to ethically and morally conduct themselves in a social environment besides just teaching English. I treated and took care of them as if they were my own children. At times, it could be seen as a fatherly influence on the children or that of a mentor. For the older children in elementary school or junior high, I did not see them everyday, but a few times a week, so we mostly practiced English or how to be a good student. Also, in educating the children, I used the training philosophies of Aikido especially with classroom management. For teaching ethics and morality, I simply drew upon what my Grandmother and Grandfather had taught me as a child.

I would like to have children. I would hope to be a good father. I know that I will be a much better father due to my experiences of teaching children.

Darren Schell

Hello Everyone,\n My name is Darren Schell. I am from the United States. I went to Gonzaga University and Eastern Washington University. My majors were electrical engineering, military science and business with concentrations in management, finance and economics. I like to travel and experience new places and learn about different cultures. I have been traveling or living in Taiwan for the past 8 years. I enjoy sports, history, movies and learning new things.

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