Children are always excited about activities they like and often get great benefit from discussing their class activities with parents and guardians. Asking them about their training goals before class can help frame their minds to learn as much as possible. If your child has a skill or technique that they need to work on, discussing this with them can increase their focus. New intentions can also be set ahead of each class. If your child is feeling down, reminding them that Aikido classes are also a lot of fun where they can play with new friends can help keep lift their mood. Once you and your child know what works well, setting up a pre-class routine can help them get ready for class, the same time, and every time and making it part of their routine schedule.
While watching every class may not be possible, sitting in on some of them will help you monitor how your child is responding, what your child likes, what they dislike, as well as where they might be struggling. This is extra helpful for the child, especially when they’re nearing a grading test. Chatting to your child to see how they felt about class and what they learned can help you understand their progress better, while reinforcing key learning points. Discussion can also encourage them to demonstrate or practice a bit at home, with your support.
For older children, encouraging them to keep a small written log of their activities can be helpful, even if it is simply to help them remember the japanese names of Aikido techniques or dojo commands. The more involved you are the more interested they will be.
Finally, talk to the chief instructor every so often, to find out what they can work on, how you can help and to judge their general progress.