First and foremost, when something (like a karate weapon) is held, the body has an immediate awareness of the hands. Students are directed to move the weapon in different ways. In order to do this, the student must put their mind on what their hands are doing. By holding the weapon, the hands are committed to limitations of movement; this removes a lot of the "fidget factor". In order to keep that weapon (and for the safety of the class) everyone MUST comply with the instructor. In weapons class more than others, all eyes must be on Sensei; this forces an important habit to improve focus: keep eyes on the person who is speaking.
Another reason weapons training is useful to work on focus: most kids WANT to learn kabudo. In these modern times, it can be difficult to draw a child away from their electronic games. Given the chance, kids are going to jump at the chance to learn "real" weapons. All students take kabudo training very seriously; using a weapon demands a responsibility and maturity that kids are willing to embrace for the privilege of training. "Weapons day" is the reason many kids stay involved with their karate classes. It is a great motivation to get to class and learn.
As students get older and more experienced, their expertise expands and this is a source of great pride. The weapons require practice in order to perfect the many manipulations. Kids who would never practice on demand are found in the yard swinging their staff, spinning their nunchuka, or flipping their sai. Destructive ideologies certainly exist but these are not introduced to youngsters. Their goal is to master their physical selves and to manipulate an object, which in this case is a martial arts weapon. Kabudo develops motor skills, and more importantly the mind/body connection. Our youngest students especially enjoy the weapons part of the week. We are not surprised, it's FUN!