Ice Skating Training Facilities

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San Diego Figure Skating Communications

Retirees Mentoring
Aspiring Athletes

    The phrase "It takes a village to raise to raise a child" is attributed to an old African proverb. Its exact origin seems to be lost in time. In 1994 children's author Jane Cowen-Fletcher's book, published by Scholastic Press, It Takes A Village discusses a young African girl who searches for her younger brother, only to find the rest of the village has been watching over him as well.

    In January 1996, publisher Simon & Schuster released hillary Rodham-Clinton's It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us in which then First Lady Hillary espoused more the expansion of government than any true wisdom or insight into the nurturing of children. Reviews are mixed on the impact this book has made on society as a whole.

    In May 2001, publisher Harper-Collins released the seventh book in the Lemony Snicket's Unfortunate Events series titled The Vile Village, it was mentioned at the beginning of the book, "It takes a village to raise a child".

Source -

    It has been a tradition in societies around the world to honor and respect individuals in their community who grow older because of their experience, knowledge, and skills.  In this traditional model, the elder is considered the source of wisdom, guidance, and expertise who could pass on this knowledge to younger generations.

    In 2010, far fewer family members are born and reside their entire lives, and eventually die in the same community. As a result younger members of our modern society are no longer able to benefit from multiple generations residing in the same household or even from interacting with their parental and fraternal grandparents who by living in the same community can frequent interact with their grand children. 

    Today's modern family no longer has the luxury of one parent staying home to provide child care and manage the household duties - cleaning, washing laundry, shopping, and preparing meals.

    In some cases parents can arrange their work schedules for one parent to be home to get the kids off to school in the morning while the other parent is home when the kids return home from school.

    Music, ballet, and other lessons, plus participation in non-school sports activities can require transportation to and from these events before and after school during the week and on weekends.

Latch Key Children
    Full time employment outside the home can restrict parental involvement and supervision. Scheduling is generally considered an area in which parents wish they could find reliable help to fill in while they are at work.

    A largely untapped source of mentioning volunteers are the growing numbers of retirees who can assist our younger population while receiving a rewarding experience from the children who grow and develop under their care and encouragement.

Mentoring of Young Children, its Impact on Students
     Current theory on mentoring describes the process as a mutual learning relationship in which both the mentor and the mentee gain knowledge (Zachary, 2000).  The current model of mentoring deems the mentor and mentee to be in a collaborative relationship based on mutual respect, trust, and a commitment to growth in both parties.

    Together, they set and achieve their goals, reveal themselves, take risks, make mistakes, accept each other's strengths and weaknesses, and grow and develop (Zachary, 2000). A critical component in the process is a process of reflection where the mentor and the mentee discuss their progress of achieving their goals, perform an analysis of how to continue the learning process, and acknowledge their success. The reflection process and a disposition of openness to learning from each other can result in new skills and knowledge for both parties (Zachary, 2000).

Mentoring Gifted Children
     Mentoring children may be approached in an entirely different way and for different reasons.
A variety of gifted student populations can benefit from such a relationship, including:
  • those interested in career choice and development
  • students needing help in affective areas
  • young people wanting to pursue a specific area of interest in-depth
  • those having progressed beyond the curriculum offered at school
    Some people suggest that the creation of a mentoring experience should wait until high school. It really depends on the goals of the program and matching the commitment of the mentor and student.  Elementary school students can be very successfully mentored, but it requires a great deal of time on the part of a volunteer to make it work.

    A high quality mentoring program supports the school teacher's effectiveness and increases student academic, social, and athletic success. A mentoring committee can be formed to decide and shape how what type and scope of mentoring is provided at each specific site. The support provided during first year will be critical establishing a long term impact on the future of a student in their future careers.

    Mentoring programs can be organized along the structure and concept of SCORE, a retired group of business people who volunteer to provide free assistance and advice for prospective start-ups and operating small businesses.

Mentoring Grants
    Assistance is available to provide and promote mentoring programs for children with the greatest need. Grants are provided to programs that:
  1. assist such children in receiving support and guidance from a mentor;
  2. improve the academic performance of such children;
  3. improve interpersonal relationships between such children and their peers, teachers, other adults, and family members;
  4. reduce the dropout rate of such children; 
  5. reduce juvenile delinquency and involvement in gangs by such children.
   While operating an ice rink may not have a large enough base to attract sponsors for a mentoring program, a larger sport and recreational community center would generate the interest to warrant the time and effort to write grants to establish a comprehensive mentoring program.


It only takes one person to make a difference in the life of a child. Be that person. Make a Difference.
Access a variety of quality based mentoring resources and information for mentoring programs, mentors and mentees. An advocate organization.

Mentoring for School-Age Children study, undertaken by P/PV in 1996 at the behest of The. National Mentoring Partnership's Public Policy Council

Mentoring Children
July 13, 2008 ... All parents hope that their children will grow up healthy, happy, and productive . They aspire to have children who have the skills to contribute to their own well-being and to the well-being of their families and community. There is no magic bullet for developing these capacities in children.

Mentoring Programs – Child, Youth Mentoring
Child Trends is a nonprofit, nonpartisan children's research organization. The youth development section contains research briefs on the impact of mentoring

Mentoring Children - Child & Family Web Guide
Information on mentoring for parents and professionals. Various articles and reports covers youth mentoring programs, the benefits of mentoring/ Discipline: Mentoring Children for Success ...
This book is about helping the most important people living on this planet: our children. As adults, we can make a huge positive impact on their future,

Awesome Library - Main - Volunteering - Mentoring
Mentoring Children (America's Promise). Provides the names of organizations that are creating mentoring opportunities as part of America's Promise.


The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:

Sports Specialization
PDF  High School Coaches Handbook
PDF   Schooling of Elite Skaters
Adult Recreation and Competitive Activities
Child Care Programs
Comparison of Athletes in Different Sports
Athlete Skill Progression
Retiree Mentoring Aspiring Athletes
The Elderhostel Experience

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The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
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