Saturday, May 31, 2008

Another Quarter, Another Color

While I have been preparing to teach reading this summer, homeschooling has continued.
N. has been been reading quite a bit about the ships and airplanes of WWII, as well as working on Kamama Naturalist Training.

And the "carschooling" aspects of N.'s education have also continued. A few weeks ago, N. made the First Class rank advancement in BSA and he finished up the year in Machon Jewish studies with a 6 week study of the Shoah (Holocaust).

N. has been diligent in his Taekwondo practice as well, and last week he tested for advancement from the Purple Belt to Orange Belt. He is breaking boards now, and intrepid as always, he decided to break three boards at once in testing although he had not done so in training. Although he tried several times, he did it only when he remembered to keep his hand moving fast through the boards.

Today, N. participated in the belt advancement ceremony. In the picture above, his group of Blue belts stand ready to bow at the beginning of the ceremony. N. turned to listen to Master Blackman just as the Engineering Geek snapped the picture.
In the Blackman Dojang, children 12 and under study in separate classes from adults 12 and over. N. studies with a small group four who have persisted together. They are becoming close-knit, working together on the forms, Hapkido (self-defense moves), breaking and sparring.

Here, N. is putting on his new Orange Belt, after removing the old Purple one and honoring the work he did while wearing it.
After testing, Master Blackman talked to the group about the circle of forms and sparring, and how one must control the energy of the opponent, and vice-versa so that the energy moves between the two as a circle for practice.
He also talked about the open hand. "You hold your hands close to your face," he said, "And open to show that you do not want to fight. But your hands are ready for different punches or grabs if the opponent insists on a fight. Fighting is always the last resort because even when you win you get hurt."
I really like the confidence and discipline and the ethics that N. is learning in Taekwondo.
One of his teachers, Mrs. Crates, told me that she is very pleased with his progress and intensity. He is certainly doing well. He has advanced from white through yellow and purple and now to orange, all in less than nine months.
We're proud of his progress.
This is physical education at its best!

1 comment:

Melora said...

Wow! Great job, N.!!! (though that board breaking thing would make me a nervous mommy)
Sounds like they are teaching good stuff -- I particularly like the "only fighting if you Have to" thing.