Friday, November 16, 2012

Master Hans focuses on children

Recently I visited the Higginson/Lewis and the King, two K-8 schools that have added tae kwon do to their curriculum. As I enter the gymnasium, third graders run for their uniform and once dressed form a line. Master Hans then request silence and ask them to take position. The class then begins with segments of jumping jacks and tae kwon do forms. Master Hans has been teaching tae kwon do for more than 3 years as part of a funded program provided by the U.S. Tae Kwon Do Education Foundation (U.S.T.E.F.).

 After one of the sessions at the schools, I asked Mr. Hans, how the program started at the school. He responded, “Mr. Tito Jackson referred us to the Higginson/Lewis, which was our first school in Boston area. Then, through principal Ms. Oliver's recommendations, we were able to teach in two other schools, the McKinley and the King.” The students take part in a 10 week session and then a graduation ceremony takes places where they are presented their yellow belts.

Last night I attended the graduation ceremony that took place at the Madison Park High School gymnasium. Many parents were in attendance to watch their children demonstrate all that they learned in the program. Master Hans made sure to get the parents involved in the ceremony. Some were asked to stand by their children and do some of the routines with them, and while the children shouted “Yes Sir” after each move, he asked parents to cheer.

Ms. Lena Reddick, Director of Partnership and Community, said “[in her role] I am always looking for alternative ways to get parents involved-not just socially, but academically- and tonight’s program demonstrate how tae kwon has been able to do that-not only tonight, but in the classroom.” Mr. Hans affirms that by saying, “Positive thinking, good focus, and good attitude is what I strive for in the class sessions. We want all the students to get general benefits through tae kwon do and to incorporate this not only in school, but also at home.”

Master Hans looks forward to expanding the program to other schools and hopes to get more families involved. For those who want to learn more about the program visit:

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