Karate Kids Teach Students About Stranger Danger

When it comes to karate, martial arts members know all the right moves. But when it comes to safety, it's not how well you punch, kick, or block your opponent. Sometimes, it's how loud you scream.

"Fire!" a boy yelled, as another boy came from behind him.

"When you scream like that, what does that do? It tells people you're in trouble. It brings attention to yourself," Derek Pruitt explained.

Pruitt owns "South Coast Martial Arts" of Long Beach. On Friday, his club used karate to catch the attention of students at Reeves Elementary.

"We pretty much use karate moves, demonstrations, and what we'll do is send a message to them about how doing karate, number one, is not that easy," Pruitt said. "Then also carrying this, with the summer time coming up, to stranger danger."

"I learned that sometimes strangers could be really dangerous," one little girl said.

"We're trying to teach them some key words, some key things to remember. So when they're in that situation, they'll know," Pruitt said.

"You scream 'fire' and 'danger,'" said another student.

The youngsters also picked up other lessons linked to karate, like character, concentration, and respect.

"With children being abducted, and things of that nature, we try to go ahead and step up as a martial arts club, and let people know we're not just teaching karate.  We're actually teaching them how to be good citizens," Pruitt said.

Members of "South Coast Martial Arts" want to take their safety lesson to as many schools as possible in Harrison County, by the end of the school year.