Kaizen dojo’s debut grading as Gaeilge

by Stephen Findlater
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THE KAIZEN Dojo in Terenure will hold the world’s first karate grading through the medium of the Irish language on Saturday, June 8.

Twelve children from the local national school Gaelscoil Chnoc Liamhna aged between seven and 12 will attempt to grade from beginner (white belt) to orange belt.

Nothing unusual about this except it is through the medium of Irish. These children have been learning Karate through the Irish language for the last five months in Gael Scoil Chnoc Liamhna as an after school activity. GaelKarate only teach children through Irish and GaelKarate provide classes to children in Dublin.

This is the first time this has ever been attempted in Ireland and the world. This is quite an achievement as this is a Japanese martial art been taught only to children in Irish.

While the children learn the basics of karate they also learn Japanese and new Irish vocabulary while in a comfortable secure environment that they are used to.

Brendán Ó hUallaigh is the founder of GaelKarate and says “my aim is to inspire children to learn and see the Irish language in a different environment while learning respect for each other, self defence and having fun along the journey.

“Everyone wants a black belt and its one of the fastest growing sports in the media at present with its inclusion in the Olympics in Tokyo next year, Conor McGregor, Inclusive Karate World Cup in Dublin and girls fending off attackers but also the Irish language is under a revival in the Department of Education where PE will be taught through Irish.”

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