Organization…we all want it, we all need it but how do we achieve it? According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the definition is “the act or process of organizing or of being organized.” Some of us are definitely better at this than others! Getting kids organized is especially challenging but it is the first step to helping them be successful in school and life. Parents can teach their kids to be organized but a lot of parents struggle with this task because their children are too young to understand how important it is to have a routine or why doing things a certain way is best for them.
Organizing your child’s day starts with a plan. Brainstorm when you want your child to do certain tasks and what those tasks should be. For example, if you want your child to do their homework before they play, make sure they have all the supplies they need and that they know where the homework is located before they start playing. They should learn how to manage their time, organize their room and keep track of tasks. Sounds pretty easy, right?
Although parents strive to effectively teach their kids the skills to be organized, it takes a village! Being able to have others teach organizational concepts outside the home is just as important. From school to a discipline like martial arts, children are able learn from others how and why organization in life is important, reinforcing what they are learning at home.
Martial arts training helps kids develop an appreciation for organization starting with the history of martial arts. There are many different styles and systems organized into arts styles. One way is by the country of origin, like China’s Tai Chi, Japan’s Karate or Korea’s Taekwondo. Another way is by the formality of the art – from highly formalized to less formalized. The most popular method of organizing martial arts is by “style” according to how they were developed or what their main focus is, such as self-defense.
As soon as a student enters Championship Martial Arts to train, they know they are going to have a great class but there are tasks they need to do before they even walk onto the mat. That includes putting shoes in a certain area, setting down their equipment in a way it will be easily accessible for class, grabbing their attendance card, and taking a knee along the edge of the mat until a Sensei greets them individually and requests their attendance card. If they miss any of those things, they are asked to complete them before they can continue with class.
On the mat, sometimes children have a shorter attention span, so the curriculum is designed to be fun and energetic, keeping them engaged, challenged and focused. Flow of the class is key and shows students how they need to be organized when doing their forms – taking their time and not skipping ahead – or using weapons in an organized way that equates to control and mastery of the weapon.
When it comes to a personal martial arts goal, the ability for a student to organize their thoughts to achieve it can make all the difference. The goal can be something as simple as “I want to get a black belt in ____” or it can be more complex, such as “I want to compete in the Olympics.” In order to achieve the goal, it is important to break down and organize what needs to be done and why they are doing it. For example, if a student wants to compete in the Olympics, they will need a coach and some training on their own. If they want a black belt, they will need to train for several years and organize the pathway that will help them be prepared to attempt the test.
The first step to helping a child organize their thoughts surrounding a martial arts goal may look something like this:
- What are your reasons for training in martial arts?
- Do you want to improve your physical fitness?
- Do you want to learn self-defense skills?
- Are you looking for a way to build confidence and self-esteem?
- Is this an opportunity for you and a friend or family member to spend time together?
- What are the benefits you hope to get from training in martial arts?
When you are able to organize thoughts around goals, you begin to make those goals a reality. Martial arts teaches us that being organized is all about being ready, getting intentional and working to be your best self in all you do. So parents, if you are looking for some help with that whole organization thing, martial arts is a fantastic way to help teach that important life skill to your child!