Instructors, do you prefer teaching adults or kids?

Discussion in 'Ski School' started by LiquidFeet, Jun 10, 2019.

  1. geepers

    geepers Out on the slopes Skier

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    See? Know how some young toddlers get grumpy without an afternoon nap? Same thing applies other end of life.:beercheer:
     
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  2. David Chan

    David Chan getting after it! Instructor

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    I'll teach anyone.. I probably do better with teens through adult but I enjoy the wonder of younger kids.. It helps me keep thinking about being young and playing.

    It's the kids of entitled parents that I don't like teaching but I guess that goes for entitled adults as well.

    There was not a "Children's specialist" accreditation when I started working on my L3 so the CAP model. PDAS, Maslov's, etc and all the associated teaching was built into our teaching exams from when I started this journey. When I completed my L3 teach the CS1 and CS2 had come into being and in order to take the Divisional Trainer, we had to have our CS2. Luckily because our L2 and L3 included a lot of the material for CS accreditation, I petitioned to skip CS1 and go right to CS2 and was allowed to do so.

    Western division still allows you to get your L3 without the CS2 requirement but I have a feeling that will change over time. We do still run many of the teaching modules as needing to adapt your lesson for children or if you are primarily a children's instructor, you would have to adapt your teaching for an adult.

    DC
     
  3. David Chan

    David Chan getting after it! Instructor

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    and yes PSIA had lots of children's teaching resources available to us. I still have all of it on my shelf and refer to it regularly.
     
  4. markojp

    markojp mtn rep for the gear on my feet Industry Insider Instructor

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    Generally I like variety, but I'm naturally a bit more comfortable working from age 7'ish on up. This season the youngest was probably 10, the oldest, 82. The 82 year old is an amazing skier to work with over several weeks. We had a great time.

    The 10 yo was a special needs private. It was perhaps the most memorable lesson this season. I was stepping in for her regular instructor who was unavailable that day. My own attitude is one where I need to lead by example. Teaching all ages and abilities keeps you sharp.
     
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  5. Mike King

    Mike King AKA Habacomike Instructor

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    My experience is that almost all of the education focused on TEACHING skiing, rather than on improving one's own skiing or their movement analysis skills, happens in the PSIA CS curriculum and clinics. The material is applicable to teaching all age groups, not just children. I do think that some of the curriculum and concepts have been debunked, but much of it is quite useful.

    In PSIA-RM, you must successfully complete the CS-1 and CS-2 accreditations to earn your Level 1 or Level 2 pin. Given that there's a move afoot to align national certifications across the divisions, I cannot imagine that it will be long before this is a requirement in all divisions.

    Mike
     


  6. HDSkiing

    HDSkiing SUCK—At The Highest Level Skier

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    Hmmm...I'm on the adult side so if they are younger than 9 then they go down to the Children's School unless their parents buy them a private lesson which the children's school is not equipped for except on slow days. Still 9 is pretty young, and I have done some privates as young as 3 (I know).

    I also coach a youth program where I have the same kids all day on a Saturday for 8 weeks. I think that is my favorite program, those kids all advanced skiers are usually in the 8-10 age group, although I've had both younger and older. They have the stamina to ski the whole mountain practically nonstop (keeps me in shape) and are at that stage where the drills we do really seem to make a difference, you can see the results at the end of the program. Some of those kids go on to work for us as instructors.

    During the week we get kids of all levels and ages from elementary through High School who take Skiing as a PE credit (two hours of lessons/lunch/two hours of free ski or vice versa) those too are some of my favorite programs as you are with them for a good chunk of the season, we even give them report cards.

    Adult lessons come and go, (with the exception of some privates that return again and again) and I enjoy doing those too, but nothing beats getting to work with the same skiers, some all day long, week after week.

    My least favorite? The out of shape teenager from sea level who doesn't want to be there, I'll take an out of shape adult from sea level who does want to be there any day over that!

    But really I have no preference. As I moved into supervision for part of my work week I have noticed that generally, the younger staff seems to like working with kids more than the older staff (could be that the younger ones need the money more and take any & all work) but we have some great older instructors who have amazing energy to keep the kids interested, particularly all day long and so I think a lot of that has to do with physical and mental stamina. Our season-long weekend youth programs require that you ski with and supervise them all day long, eat lunch with them and sometimes most exhaustingly deal with their parents. :eek:

    Teaching approaches are different too, If I were to generalize in the big picture kids: little talking/lots of skiing and fun. Adults: more of a paced approach, some really want/like/need a lot of explanation and the rest breaks. As someone who does this as a full-time job Nov-April, I'm just grateful to have the opportunity to do either!
     
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  7. Kneale Brownson

    Kneale Brownson Out on the slopes Instructor

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    Adults only. Being that my grandsons are in their 30s (and unmarried), I have no idea what goes on in today's children's world, and have no experience teaching kids below junior high age. And THAT was in the 1970s!!!
     
  8. Thread Starter
    TS
    LiquidFeet

    LiquidFeet Making fresh tracks Instructor

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    This would be my ideal situation. But alas, it is not to be. I'm jealous.
     
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  9. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Instructor Skier

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    I love teaching teens and adults. The only time I get a small human is when they assign me a private which is a good bit throughout the season. It's a nice balance for me. Teaching a bunch of little at once in a kids program makes me want to drink heavily. Did that too many times at butternut. One at a time at Broms is perfect. Thinking of doing children's academy this coming season for a tip or two.
     
  10. Kneale Brownson

    Kneale Brownson Out on the slopes Instructor

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    Go see the closest Vail resort. They separate children's ski school from adult ski school.
     
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  11. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Instructor Skier

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    Bromley does that too. If you are a kid your only choice is a half or full day kids rule or you get them a private which is why they get me. It's 1 at a time so I don't mind that. Bromley asks where you want to teach and they work with you. Some instructors bounce between kids rule and adults but I got burnt out by mass groups of littles at my last mountain.
     
  12. James

    James Skiing the powder Instructor

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    Not Vail East.
     
  13. Kneale Brownson

    Kneale Brownson Out on the slopes Instructor

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    Really? No adult ski school manager and children's ski school manager? Usually they have a director of skier services and the two managers reporting to the director.
     
  14. James

    James Skiing the powder Instructor

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    Nothing changed last year. Kids under 7 have always been a separate entity. Eg, 4-6. I think you have to be 4 for group lessons but that might have changed. Used to be 5 to do snowboard.
    Ski school is driven by kids. Same at Stratton. Probably the whole Northeast. There's not enough work likely to do no kids. You can certainly get by without doing all day kids or kids under 7, but none at all? Not many could.
    We don't even have adult groups over green for the last 3-4 years. Wasn't enough interest. We even had afternoon maximum of three people adult clinics and aften it would be 1-2. Or zero.
    Maybe Vail will bring them back.
     
  15. rustypouch

    rustypouch Booting up Skier

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    Depends on my mood, and the student, but generally adults, although working with kids can be fun.

    Adults are there because they want to be. Kids often want to be there, but sometimes don't. I've only had one adult who had a meltdown, but it was more a freezing up because she felt she was over terrained. I've lost track of the number of kids who've had a meltdown.

    Adults are better at telling when they're having an issue, with kids you need to be more attuned to them.

    Kids don't have the expectations that adults do in terms of improvement or outcomes, they're just there to have fun.
     
  16. L&AirC

    L&AirC PSIA Instructor and USSA Coach Skier

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    I love coaching U10s. I don't mind filling in here and there for other ages but U10 is my sweet spot. For teaching, I don't really have a favorite age. One of my most memorable lessons was with a 4 year old. At the same time, when I've been able to get an adult to ski for the first time or get over their fear, my spirit is lifted for days. It is more of a favorite "type" - they want to learn and have an open mind.

    The big thing for me is that we can communicate and preferably the get my jokes. They aren't that funny (typical dad jokes) but i enjoy causing an eye roll as much as a chuckle.
     
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  17. Kurt

    Kurt Alps Instructor

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    I like to teach and have taught many subjects over the years; geology, chemistry, project management, and skiing. What I enjoy most is people that love to learn and are engaged, irrespective of age. Nothing brings more joy to teaching than to see the "light bulb" go off with someone; their experience opens a new world of learning. My challenge is not to get burned out, but to continue to love skiing and savor those moments where people share in that love. For background, I'm 61 (ok, 62 in a few days), and teach the full spectrum of beginners to race coaching, ages 8 to 60's.
     
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  18. ADKmel

    ADKmel Turning Skier

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    Southern Adirondacks NY
    I mostly get privates, mostly requests from adults, repeat customers and many privates from my friends for their grand kids some little and teen kids. I also usually always am assigned to the ladies and mom's from learn to ski to skill improvement.
    I love teaching kids that have a skating background, good balance, and no fear of speed and they pick up parallel skiing really quickly.
    I usually pass the 'pick me up kids' lessons on to the younger instructors, Although last season I had a 4 yr old that may end up a Pro skier. she's an amazing little skier, when I spun around to see how the class (all related kids) were doing So did She! She is fearless and got so dialed in she was skiing our steepest trail in 2 days under control, making mostly parallel turns!

    My favorite lessons are those that the students overcome fear, conquer a trail, learn to ski in control and sign up for another lesson on their way out the door.

    I CAN"T WAIT TO SKI......
     
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