Sean came from a broken home. By age seven, he was living with his grandmother and already considered a bad kid.
He was restless, constantly moving, unable to sit still, fidgety. When people talked, Sean interrupted, blurted stuff out, rolled his eyes, or talked back. His teachers didn’t like him because he was a major distraction in the classroom. Always getting in trouble. If there was a choice between right and wrong, Sean would inevitably do the wrong thing at the wrong time.
Tae Kwon-Do doesn’t always get the stars in life. There are a lot of broken people. Kids searching for help and wanting to be fixed. That’s how Sean came to my school.
On the surface it appeared Sean’s biggest problem was listening and maintaining focus. He was warm and liked to give hugs, but he wanted attention. One time during class I was instructing the students on how to do a side kick. Sean was acting up and not paying attention. I called out, “Hey, Sean. What did I just ask you to do?” To my surprise, Sean repeated my instructions (almost verbatim) back to me.
I had what you call that aha moment!
I thought, here’s a kid everyone thinks has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), is incapable of listening, and needs to be medicated, when actually he hears everything and stores it in his mind. Sean is paying attention, he’s just bored. He needs to be engaged and part of the lesson, not just told what to do.
So I brought Sean to the front of the class and used him as a demonstration model. It was a win-win. The other students benefited from watching Sean learn the new technique, while Sean took advantage of participating. It takes a great deal of focus to stand-up in front of your peers. Not only did Sean want to look good, he wanted to succeed.
Six years later, Sean is still studying Tae Kwon-Do with me. He’ll soon be taking his next level black belt test.
Whatever Sean decides to do with his life I know he’ll be successful. Tae Kwon-Do provides the focus and discipline necessary to succeed. By using your mind, body, and spirit, you can conquer any challenge life throws at you.
This post is part of a series highlighting the many wonderful students that practice Tae Kwon-Do at Master Gorino’s Tae Kwon-Do School in Amherst, NY.