Ninja Kids Eikaiwa

Ninja Kids in Japan is a combination of teaching English and Ninja skills!

The Children love being able to dress up and ” play ninja ” while also being challenged at English. I always want to keep them enthused about the training, so I always change the games and routines. We learn to roll from various kamae, pick up tools for self defence, jump away from flying shuriken balls and foam samurai swords. We also play with blindfolds and practise our ninja walking and running. I sometimes do juggling to enhance hand/eye coordination. I emphasize taihenjutsu greatly. It is very important for them to be not afraid of the ground.

The parents love me when you tell them that the ninja were very quiet and noone could ever hear them! The parents want me to keep telling their children this. Lol. I think this is the same for most parents around the world eh!

Recently I graded my students ( ages 4-10 ) to 9th kyu. They are getting a firm grasp of ukemi,kaiten,shi ho tobi and kamae.

They also receive certification for their efforts in learning English each year.

Soke and the Shihan used to teach children. Soke mentioned that it was very important to do so. We also learn many lessons ourselves. For me, it helps me maintain the lightness of heart and the feeling of “playing”. When watching the kids practise, they do so earnestly, but with a sence of real enjoyment. They pick things up and advance into new techniques on their own without my instruction. Because they love it, they “play” and naturally progress through the correct attitude. They are free and happy!

Teaching children is challenging but fun. Good luck!

4 Responses to “Ninja Kids Eikaiwa”

  1. Hi Duncan,
    The children in your DOJO are so fortunate to have such a creative and inspiring teacher,like yourself.I have been been teaching children since 1986 and it has brought me such great enjoyment to see them learn our Budo and to become very responsible citizens.Best of luck as we venture forth during this “year of the tiger”.Take care!

  2. Duncan,
    thank you for this post! I teach Physical Education at an elementary school and agree with the importance of teaching rolling and falling at a young age. It is also incredible to see how naturally sanshin movements exist when we work with throwing various equipment and/or jumping skills.
    Some times I me question the skills that are taught in school to change natural movements that exists because we strive to create a more “correct form”. Because of time constraints (45min. a week of P.E.) and the omnipresence of T.V. it is arguable that success can come faster to most students by teaching what could be considered “kata” or most rudamentary form, therefore encouraging more activity. I would be interested in any differences that you might personally have experienced in teaching children, culturally or otherwise. Thank you again for your insights, have a great year!
    P.S.- They love ninja walking!

  3. Rob Hartung Says:

    I love it… The kids look like they are having a blast.

  4. Dear Shihan Duncan,

    I have been teaching children in New Jersey for such a short time, emphasizing on those basic skills they need to work on, alternating the classes with very basic elements of the Japanese Language such as greetings, common expressions and so on, unfortunately, at this point I have not being able to get information about how to manage the ranks for kids or how divide their training in levels, it does not exist? do you have a suggestion? Thanks in advance.

    Based on the American children’s needs, I have been planning to extend my classes involving Spanish Language (my first language) on them, where children can learn and/or to practice it; “crazy idea” I though, and I was feeling that I need to think a little bit more about it, however, tonight I was taking a look on different sites about Bujinkan children programs just to be according with all the dojos point of view, and I saw your video of a class demostration in youtube called “Ninja Kids eikaiwa” which gave me a big smile because I can realize that no matter how far (in distance) we all can be, if we walk over the same path is always a person who feels, or who does those things you want to do.

    Thank you for all your work, your articles and I hope to met you one day in person, probably in your next trip to NJ or in mine to Noda.


    Luis F. Hernandez
    Passaic Bujinkan Buyu
    Tel. +1 (973) 931-6694
    Fax +1 (484) 727-0538
    Address: 130 Lakeview Ave. Clifton, NJ 07011

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