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The Key To Your Elevate Your Skate!

Learning System

(Advancement Keys)

“The job of feedback is to meet the student where they are and give them what they need to take their next steps,” said Susan Brookhart at the Learning and the Brain conference.

   The Kellian Hockey Advancement Keys represent a system of learning.  Much like the learning construct found in studying a martial art, like Karate, the Kellian Hockey Advancement Keys give the student and teacher a map to learning skills and concepts in a sequential and thoughtful manner.  


  While studying Karate at the Mount Mansfield Martial Arts School with Master Scott Graner, I have been particularly impressed with how he clarifies and communicates the learning journey.  Each stage in Master Graner's Karate school is organized by a belt ranking system. Each belt is divided into skills and concepts that are equal in difficulty, equatable to each other, but represent a buildable platform for the overall learning.  Each stage of learning, or belt rank, seamlessly builds on the last creating a well rounded and memorable learning strategy.  The base skills continue to be revisited even though a student is working on a more advanced concept.

   The most powerful piece of this, is that learning is paced by the student, not the teacher. When a concept is understood, the student can move on and grow.  But how is this accomplished with students of various ages, ability and backgrounds?  Each stage of learning has been well thought out in terms of overall importance and sequential skill building.  A student would be presented the concept, and often times... the lessons are frequently repeated. At their rate, a student will begin practicing.  When they become proficient with the skill, they earn a stripe on their belt. The stripes represent a level of competence.   Once a student shows proficiency in one skill, they can start working on the next while constantly revisiting the others. The process continues from belt to belt.

   The belt system helps students to learn at their own pace.  The reason, I have found, is because the belt outwardly tells the teacher and student exactly where they are in the learning process... and the teacher can seamlessly direct a student in ever changing situations to think about their concept from the scope of the learning stage they are at.  Just by looking at their belt, the teacher can help the student with their concept without making assumptions on the student's level of understanding. Coaches can also use appropriate language and direction to help solidify the idea for them.

  The Kellian Hockey Advancement Keys will mirror a Karate belt rank system... just no belts. What we will do, is have different colors of Shin pad tape that will be striped onto your stick between your hands.  This way, the stripes will be visible for the student and the coach without getting in the way of the players stick handling or shooting.

The Kellian Hockey Advancement Keys will be broken up into 5 keys.  The White Key (which would be a white piece of tape placed on your stick), represents the first conceptual skill to learn:  Is to look BEFORE you receive the puck in any way.  You need to master the concept of developing a plan before you get the puck.  The other part of the White Key, is about positioning and your responsibilities on the ice.  This is a team game... and we have to work together as a group to score.  You do your part... I'll do mine!  The Yellow Key represents the concept of the three positions: Pressure, Support and Balance.  When trying to understand which player goes where in the offensive zone, we do it with this concept.   The Orange Key represents the concept movement (mostly focusing when a player does not have the puck), the Red Key has a player working on Prediction and Anticipation.

Kellian Hockey is a place where athletic people can learn the finer aspects of the game. There are no scholarships, no contracts to the pros nor money to be made for your playing. Our school is designed to have a place to play with people who want to learn about hockey to a point that makes them an asset to any team or in a pick-up hockey environment.  Your individual physical skills will develop in time depending on what effort you put into that. That's not the idea here though.  The idea is to develop your cognitive understanding and appreciation for the nuances of the sport.  That will make you a smarter player, a more efficient player and a more effective player.  The physical skills come next!

Click on the link to get to the descriptions of the Advancement Keys!

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