Everyone knows the saying “practice makes perfect,” but establishing a habit of practice is a large part of achieving excellence. At our karate schools, we often talk about working on discipline – not the kind that means punishing a student, but the kind that means instilling in them a routine work ethic.
Creating a habit of practice requires parent guidance. We do a practice challenge at our karate school to get students going with rewards for their work. You can also do this at home with whatever goal you’d like your child to achieve.
Here are some tips on how to establish a habit of practice
- Encourage them with a reward. The reward should be a small trinket or not even an object at all: an extra book at bedtime, 10 minutes of “mom and me” time. Be creative!
- Make sure you remind your student to practice every day. Set an alarm on your phone and/or put it on your calendar. It’s hard for adults to manage this too, use the tools around you.
- Choose a specific time of day to practice. For instance, practice when you wake up, before you brush your teeth, or right after getting home from school. This will make practicing easy to remember.
- Help your child foresee obstacles and find solutions. It might not always be easy to find time to practice. Good! That’s when the lessons are learned. Are they stuck in the car on a trip? You can practice on a paper piano, or by singing notes to the song. Are they sick in bed? Have them verbally tell you the moves to their karate kata. Approaching your practice from different angles!
If you help them practice, they will feel good about their activities and learn the discipline that will make them successful in school, work and life.
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