In the dojo, just like the classroom, the children who interrupt, act out, and pay no attention to the lessons end up costing the diligent and eager students precious learning time. In turn, these eager students often get bored, feel like they are not learning enough, and resent those who are disruptive and are getting all the attention of the instructor. I've seen kids get fed up and not want to participate anymore. In both school, and karate class.
And the martial arts is full of children who have parents seeking discipline for their unfocused youngsters. This can be a good thing. Sometimes it works. However, there is a notion that a martial arts instructor can mystically transform any student. Or that the discipline of a martial art is going to “force” a youngster to “fall in line” as it were.
But it's not the army. And misbehaving children, while some are just seeking attention, many have genuine problems focusing and/or behaving, especially in a situation that is not one-on-one. The situation needs understanding, to be sure.
However, having a dojo full of students watching one or two children do push-ups for half of the class is not ideal for anyone. And truly, the eager students pay the price for this behaviour.
I think the parents need to be more involved. Often, they just drop off the child and come back after the class is over. Like it's a babysitting situation. But they need to watch what is going on from time to time. After all, there may be a bigger problem here that needs to be addressed.
Likewise, instructors need to have open communications with the parents. Many also need to learn more about childhood behaviour and attention disorders.
And lastly, other students in the class, even though they are young, need to feel comfortable speaking up and identifying problems. The instructor needs to listen to this and work things out accordingly.
Because there is room for everyone when it comes to learning, but sometimes a little extra work is required by everyone involved.