Bloom's Taxonomy And Mr. Parker's Kenpo (Part 2)

By Dennis Lawson
Published on Jun 14th, 2010

An earlier article compared Bloom’s Taxonomy of learning with Mr. Parker’s Three Phases of a Technique. Using this model was valuable to identify the process used for learning the traditional exercises of Ed Parker’s Kenpo. This article will investigate Bloom’s Taxonomy’s usefulness as a map we can use to internalize a Principle of Motion. After all, Mr. Parker said, “Principles of motion take precedent over sequences of motion.”

First let’s review the “map” Bloom’s Taxonomy. Bloom and Anderson, his student who later modified his original taxonomy, set out a series of processes for classifying educational goals. The processes are:

  1. Knowledge of / Remembering
  2. Comprehension / Understanding
  3. Application / Applying
  4. Analysis / Examining
  5. Synthesis / Evaluating
  6. Evaluating / Creating

We’ll take a principle of motion and apply the above structure. Let’s take GUIDELINING --- a method of BODY CONTACT CONTOURING that aids in accuracy. It requires a natural weapon to follow a wider surface area as an aid to striking its target. An example is in the technique Dance of Death where the striking arm follows the entire surface of the hip and thigh on its way to strike the opponent’s groin.

  1. Knowledge of / Remembering --- Requires being aware of this principle and its presence in a given exercise (Thundering Hammers, Long Form #4, etc.)
  2. Comprehension / Understanding --- What does the principle entail? Study the definition.
    Body contact on your body or your opponent’s body is essential for Guidelining to be effective. The striking weapon follows a large surface area.
  3. Application / Applying --- Apply the principle to alter (improve) the chosen exercise. Train the exercise with the principle against a bag, against an opponent, etc.
  4. Analysis / Examining --- Evaluate the exercise. Does the application of Guidelining significantly alter your performance, effectiveness, etc? How does this principle affect other principles (Depth Penetration, Body Alignment, Obscurity, etc.)?
  5. Synthesis / Evaluating --- Apply the principle in various other exercises (Triggered Salute, Obscure Wing, Dance of Darkness, etc.) to aid your process of internalizing the new behavior (way of moving). Does awareness of the principle aid the performance of these other exercises?
  6. Evaluation / Creating --- Construct other exercises where applying this principle improves your overall performance.

As teachers we know that training intelligently aids in developing new skills. TRAIN --- is to mindfully focus on one lesson at a time. You train a lesson, for example, Guidelining. To integrate a lesson through disciplined effort. Through this process we internalize the new behavior.

Internalization is the process where the new principle becomes a new behavior and part of your daily practice.

Filed under Instructors and Teaching

Author Bio :: Dennis Lawson

Dennis Lawson has trained for 4 decades in Ed Parker's Kenpo. During his varied career, Mr. Lawson has been an IKKA Regional Director for Region #3, has acted as Master of Ceremonies for the International Karate Championships, and has published numerous articles in publications for the International Kenpo Karate Association, The Martial Arts Learning Community (TheMALC), and Kenpo 2000.

Mr. Lawson has had the opportunity to study other Martial Arts and holds advanced rank in Aikido and Takemusu Aiki Budo. Dennis taught, competed in, and promoted events in the New Orleans area for 20 years. Among his list of favorite achievements is choreographing and performing Kenpo for the Dance Council of New Orleans. His academic background in psychology and love of music allow Dennis to offer a unique and entertaining approach to tailoring "the Art" to the individual. Dennis has taught seminars in Ireland, Jersey Channel Islands, The Netherlands, Portugal, and throughout the United States.

Dennis holds a Sixth Degree Black Belt in Ed Parker's Kenpo and was awarded the title “Professor” under the auspices of The Martial Arts Learning Community (TheMALC). Mr. Lawson was inducted into the International Black Belt Hall of Fame as Master Instructor of the Year for 2006.

Other Articles by Dennis Lawson

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