Instructor certification ideas

Gerry Seymour

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As I often do, I'm looking back over my curriculum, and I've come back around to my Instructor certification area. I'm interested in what others think instructors and study group leaders should be required to know, beyond what a student of the same rank needs to know (I've divorced rank from instructorship, though I know that's not common practice).

Here are some of the things on my list:
  • Concussion protocol certification (there are a couple of sources where this can be had for free via online training).
  • Red Cross First Aid certification (I was required to have CPR, and we did some Japanese traditional first aid training, much of which runs counter to current knowledge).
  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.
There are other requirements (submitting a student for testing by a certified instructor, for instance), but these are the bigger concepts.

What else would you love to see every Instructor learn.
 

Xue Sheng

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hmmm....I don't see anywhere the requirement to rip someone's heart out thru the chest at parties, show it to them before they die, and then toss it into the bean dip :D

OK, I'll go now and not darken your serious post with my silliness again.
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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hmmm....I don't see anywhere the requirement to rip someone's heart out thru the chest at parties, show it to them before they die, and then toss it into the bean dip :D

OK, I'll go now and not darken your serious post with my silliness again.
Bean dip??? What kind of heathen are you? The heart goes in the hummus.

EDIT: Great, now I'm participating in derailing my own damned thread. This is your fault, Xue.
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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I like all of those, something that I think should be including in the 'learning concepts' is the edge method. It's something that does not get a lot of attention, but is a good backdrop, IMO, for when you are teaching new techniques.
EDGE stands for Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, Enable.

Hopefully I can prevent this from being derailed within the first 5 posts.
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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I like all of those, something that I think should be including in the 'learning concepts' is the edge method. It's something that does not get a lot of attention, but is a good backdrop, IMO, for when you are teaching new techniques.
EDGE stands for Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, Enable.
This is part of the standard task learning I teach, though it can often be more effective if converted to DEDGE. For adult learners, the explanation can be more effective if they see the thing first. So, if I'm teaching a single-leg takedown from a specific position, the learner will understand it better if I show the takedown at normal speed first. Then, the explanation has a context, which aids the adult mind. If we're teaching something they're already familiiar with (perhaps a slight variation on the single-leg, an adaptation to something that makes it not work right), then we can return to EDGE, so long as there's not too much E before the D.

I stress this because I've seen instructors (even some who do a pretty good job, otherwise) spend a lot of time explaining what they're teaching, before they ever get around to showing it to the learner. In most cases, letting them see it all the way through will facilitate the explanation.

Hopefully I can prevent this from being derailed within the first 5 posts.
Good luck with that.
 

marques

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As I often do, I'm looking back over my curriculum, and I've come back around to my Instructor certification area. I'm interested in what others think instructors and study group leaders should be required to know, beyond what a student of the same rank needs to know (I've divorced rank from instructorship, though I know that's not common practice).

Here are some of the things on my list:
  • Concussion protocol certification (there are a couple of sources where this can be had for free via online training).
  • Red Cross First Aid certification (I was required to have CPR, and we did some Japanese traditional first aid training, much of which runs counter to current knowledge).
  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.
There are other requirements (submitting a student for testing by a certified instructor, for instance), but these are the bigger concepts.

What else would you love to see every Instructor learn.
I like the idea. While what is a "good martial art / instructor" is a never end discussion, this kind of things is measurable and pragmatic. While the "the good martial art" probably will never be used out of the training room, injuries my last forever. And teaching methods are being tested in many areas, including martial arts training. We could have some agreement - and standards - in this field (at least at federation / organisation / style level).

What else to include? Well, I would need to learn about business and marketing. But something short in theory and like "do yourself step-by-step". Besides that, I still think the martial skill is still the main thing every instructor should have. But it is a never ending discussion... :)
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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I like the idea. While what is a "good martial art / instructor" is a never end discussion, this kind of things is measurable and pragmatic. While the "the good martial art" probably will never be used out of the training room, injuries my last forever. And teaching methods are being tested in many areas, including martial arts training. We could have some agreement - and standards - in this field (at least at federation / organisation / style level).

What else to include? Well, I would need to learn about business and marketing. But something short in theory and like "do yourself step-by-step". Besides that, I still think the martial skill is still the main thing every instructor should have. But it is a never ending discussion... :)
I considered the business side of it, but left it out of my curriculum for two reasons. Firstly, I wanted this to apply to all instructors - including associate instructors at someone else's school. Of course, if it's kept simple, it can be useful to those folks, as well - it can help them understand some of the decisions they or their CI need to make. Secondly, IMO there are some VERY different considerations for different kinds of operations. Some operate as non-profit, some want to just cover costs, some don't have their own space, etc. Nonetheless, some basic ideas, covered at least in some written content, probably benefit most or all instructors.
 

Xue Sheng

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Bean dip??? What kind of heathen are you? The heart goes in the hummus.

EDIT: Great, now I'm participating in derailing my own damned thread. This is your fault, Xue.

hummus...how dare you...Guacamole I'd understand...but NEVER HUMMAS!!!!!....

Oh wait..sorry....I said I'd stop :D

Now to get serious...

  • Concussion protocol certification (there are a couple of sources where this can be had for free via online training).
  • Red Cross First Aid certification (I was required to have CPR, and we did some Japanese traditional first aid training, much of which runs counter to current knowledge).
  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.

I like these and I feel that more schools should require this of their certified instructors
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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I like these and I feel that more schools should require this of their certified instructors
I actually discussed at one time (with a friend who is a Silat instructor) putting together instructor prep/update seminars. They would be style-independent, and focused on good teaching skills, plus these concepts.
 

Xue Sheng

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I actually discussed at one time (with a friend who is a Silat instructor) putting together instructor prep/update seminars. They would be style-independent, and focused on good teaching skills, plus these concepts.

My question are though

  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.

Where do they get training in these 2, and who determines what the "basic task learning concepts" are?

I have seen the difference in the past between a martial arts teacher who was a good teacher, but not trained in teaching. And a martial arts teacher, who was a good teacher, who was a professional teacher in their regular job. The approach to teaching a class seems to be different. Not saying one is better than the other, just that the approach is different.
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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My question are though

  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.
Where do they get training in these 2, and who determines what the "basic task learning concepts" are?

I have seen the difference in the past between a martial arts teacher who was a good teacher, but not trained in teaching. And a martial arts teacher, who was a good teacher, who was a professional teacher in their regular job. The approach to teaching a class seems to be different. Not saying one is better than the other, just that the approach is different.
Well, since we're talking about my curriculum, they'd get those from me. My professional background started with teaching subject matter experts to teach tasks (and knowledge) to new hires. I've seen a good number of accidentally good instructors, and I've seen some who were almost good, but their students had trouble following them, because they didn't understand how people learn. The idea is to help them be a bit better prepared for teaching.

My reason for this goes back to my work with management in business. Most people are promoted to management with minimal preparation for what that new role requires. They are promoted based upon their technical ability at the role below management, and often struggle with the management tasks they were not prepared for. I see a definite parallel in MA, where we assume someone who is technically skilled is ready to be an instructor.
 

JowGaWolf

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As I often do, I'm looking back over my curriculum, and I've come back around to my Instructor certification area. I'm interested in what others think instructors and study group leaders should be required to know, beyond what a student of the same rank needs to know (I've divorced rank from instructorship, though I know that's not common practice).

Here are some of the things on my list:
  • Concussion protocol certification (there are a couple of sources where this can be had for free via online training).
  • Red Cross First Aid certification (I was required to have CPR, and we did some Japanese traditional first aid training, much of which runs counter to current knowledge).
  • Adult learning concepts (for those intending to teach kids, this should include juvenile training concepts).
  • Basic task learning concepts.
There are other requirements (submitting a student for testing by a certified instructor, for instance), but these are the bigger concepts.

What else would you love to see every Instructor learn.
I like it. The 4 different things will make them a better instructor. Sort of like. "not all smart people make the best teachers." Not everyone is naturally exposed to those things through daily life. The first 3 things I've learned through work, when I worked in youth development. The last 2 learned in college as part of a business communication class, but the Adult learning concepts was more centered on giving presentations and writing policies. These aren't the everyday hobby topics for people, including me.
 

Midnight-shadow

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I'd like to add that an instructor needs to have a good understanding of the local laws that affect them, particularly if they are doing self-defence courses. Also I think it's important for an instructor to have a basic understanding of human anatomy and bio-mechanics, even if it's nothing more than knowing how to deliver a proper warm-up and stretch routine to a class.

I don't know how much of this is done in the US, but in the UK we are very big on safeguarding and child protection, and as such any kind of sports instructor (particularly sports where the kids aren't wearing many clothes) spends a lot of time learning how to aid and physically support a child without looking like a paedophile. It may seem like common sense but being aware of where you are putting your hands can save you a whole lot of trouble. It's probably not so big an issue in Martial Arts but it's still worth noting I think.
 
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Gerry Seymour

Gerry Seymour

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I'd like to add that an instructor needs to have a good understanding of the local laws that affect them, particularly if they are doing self-defence courses. Also I think it's important for an instructor to have a basic understanding of human anatomy and bio-mechanics, even if it's nothing more than knowing how to deliver a proper warm-up and stretch routine to a class.

I don't know how much of this is done in the US, but in the UK we are very big on safeguarding and child protection, and as such any kind of sports instructor (particularly sports where the kids aren't wearing many clothes) spends a lot of time learning how to aid and physically support a child without looking like a paedophile. It may seem like common sense but being aware of where you are putting your hands can save you a whole lot of trouble. It's probably not so big an issue in Martial Arts but it's still worth noting I think.
The biomechanics and such should be part of their learning as a student. I teach that kind of stuff along the way, because it's something I think an experienced student should know. Mind you, if I were delivering this training outside my own school, I'd want to include some of that, since not all instructors share that level of knowledge with their students (and some don't seem to have that level of knowledge).

As for the laws, I'll give that some thought. There's an immediate obstacle I can think of: those laws would have to be researched for each area.

I don't teach kids, so don't have anything in my instructor curriculum to cover the child protection concepts. If I included prep for teaching kids, that's a good topic to have. If I were to roll this out as a seminar for instructors, I'd probably want to include that.
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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This is part of the standard task learning I teach, though it can often be more effective if converted to DEDGE. For adult learners, the explanation can be more effective if they see the thing first. So, if I'm teaching a single-leg takedown from a specific position, the learner will understand it better if I show the takedown at normal speed first. Then, the explanation has a context, which aids the adult mind. If we're teaching something they're already familiiar with (perhaps a slight variation on the single-leg, an adaptation to something that makes it not work right), then we can return to EDGE, so long as there's not too much E before the D.

I stress this because I've seen instructors (even some who do a pretty good job, otherwise) spend a lot of time explaining what they're teaching, before they ever get around to showing it to the learner. In most cases, letting them see it all the way through will facilitate the explanation.


Good luck with that.
I view the "e" as a very small part of it. Like explaining "this technique is a double leg takedown, that's good to use when X", then going into the technique, and while doing the technique explaining what I'm (or the instructor) is doing/how I'm moving my body. My focus would be a lot more on the "guide" part.
 

Midnight-shadow

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I don't teach kids, so don't have anything in my instructor curriculum to cover the child protection concepts. If I included prep for teaching kids, that's a good topic to have. If I were to roll this out as a seminar for instructors, I'd probably want to include that.

It's not just for children, but vulnerable adults as well, including people with mental health or physical disabilities. These people also need protecting, sometimes more than the children do. One of the things we are taught is how to identify and deal with potential domestic abuse victims which can come in the form of physical, emotional or sexual abuse. Having an awareness of this sort of thing is very important.

On a totally unrelated topic, what are the laws in the US regarding AEDs? Are lay-persons allowed to use them and is there one nearby that you would have access to? If so then in addition to learning CPR and first aid, your instructors should be AED trained as well.
 
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Gerry Seymour

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It's not just for children, but vulnerable adults as well, including people with mental health or physical disabilities. These people also need protecting, sometimes more than the children do. One of the things we are taught is how to identify and deal with potential domestic abuse victims which can come in the form of physical, emotional or sexual abuse. Having an awareness of this sort of thing is very important.
Hmm...I wish there was training like that generally available. If I were rolling this out to a larger audience, it would be worth putting in. For my program, maybe I can find some training modules from a trusted group.

On a totally unrelated topic, what are the laws in the US regarding AEDs? Are lay-persons allowed to use them and is there one nearby that you would have access to? If so then in addition to learning CPR and first aid, your instructors should be AED trained as well.
There's not one in the building I'm in, that I've seen, but that's something I'd hope is included in CPR/First Aid these days, since so many areas have them.
 
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Gerry Seymour

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Fitness coach. Nutrition?
Now we're getting deep into the kind of stuff I think instructors should go dig into, but probably isn't part of what I'd require for certification. Students don't expect nutrition advice at most MA schools, though I'd expect them to expect that at a school that's helping them prepare for an athletic event (like fight training). Frankly, it's an odd lack of expectation and desire, but there it is.
 

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Hmm...I wish there was training like that generally available. If I were rolling this out to a larger audience, it would be worth putting in. For my program, maybe I can find some training modules from a trusted group.


There's not one in the building I'm in, that I've seen, but that's something I'd hope is included in CPR/First Aid these days, since so many areas have them.

Have a look online for safeguarding courses, you might find something worthwhile.

As for AED training, depending on which organisation you do the training with they might include AEDs or not. When I was a scuba instructor we did our first aid training with "Emergency First Response" and AED was included, but the RLSS in England doesn't include it. That said, AEDs are one of the simplest pieces of kit to use and can be used effectively even without formal training. Just connect the pads and press the "on" button, and follow the instructions.
 
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