Thoughts on belt testing fees

Gerry Seymour

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That's going to be another discussion lol 'what is martial arts' and probably not appreciated on this thread. :) Interesting though, what constitutes a martial art when (if) martial means warlike etc. I don't have time to start another thread though, and I daresay there's one already.:D
Yeah, a bunch of us have been through that discussion, and it varies person-to-person.
 

Tez3

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When parents come in to ask about classes, they're given a run-down of what the classes are like,


I assume though the parents aren't involved in the actual class as with the Budokwai? Those sessions aren't classes and they are for the parent/guardian/carer to do with the children.
My granddaughter who is now one, does a lot of different sessions with her parents, sensory, swimming, music etc. she's just started walking so will also being doing gymnastics and most likely Cheer but these sessions are also done with 'their' adult until school age (4 and a half to five here).
 

dvcochran

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I think this is where the culture differences come into play because a martial arts school would simply not be allowed here to run as after school care. All afterschool clubs and childcare are regulated here by OFSTED and have to abide by standards laid down by the Dept of Education as well as be inspected yearly.

Martial arts to us here is mostly a sport alongside football, athletics etc or even a hobby, having it as childcare is something we wouldn't really consider, most classes here are for an hour a week, perhaps an hour and a half, where martial arts techniques are taught.




Well most children's classes are like that but there are posters who have said it's mostly games etc rather than actual martial arts taught at 3/4. My opinion has nothing to do with whether they put their skills to use or not, especially as they don't seem to learn any martial arts techniques, my objection is having classes of children as young as three. If it's for physical exercise etc then that's what it should be presented as, perhaps a 'toddlers gym/ready for martial arts' class or suchlike rather than a martial arts class if they aren't actually doing martial arts.

This is representative of the UK on the whole, the Budokwai is a very old club, they have a class for 3 year olds but it is not a Judo class, it's called 'Pre Judo class' they don't teach martial arts. They have a 'Judo Gym' class from 6 months+ but for parents/carers and their babies again not martial arts. this is the type of class that is useful and suitable for toddlers, along with their parents/carers rather than unaccompanied in a martial arts class.http://budokwai.co.uk/judogym
but I'm thinking as has been said this is a cultural difference as much as anything.

It sounds like semantics at play. What you describe is very, very similar to the majority of programs here. I am sure it is true that the term Martial Arts is sometimes used purely as a marketing tool. But the same can be said about the Budokwai using the term 'Judo' in the program name. No more misleading. IMHO
 

Tez3

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It sounds like semantics at play. What you describe is very, very similar to the majority of programs here. I am sure it is true that the term Martial Arts is sometimes used purely as a marketing tool. But the same can be said about the Budokwai using the term 'Judo' in the program name. No more misleading. IMHO


The Budokwai is Judo though, it's not just a school or even a club, it's the Budokwai, has been for over 100 years. (there would have been no International Judo Federation without the Budokwan ) As I've already said above though, it doesn't have classes it runs sessions for the children and their parent/carer/guardian to participate in as well in the dojo. It's not classes for young children on their own. Is that how the majority of classes are run, because if they are for childcare they can't be a parent and child one can they? the parent/adult and child sessions are more the norm here than child alone classes.
 

WaterGal

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Personally I'm not sure a martial arts class is the place for children to learn to listen, as well as learn social skills. Most of us are martial arts instructors not trained primary school teachers, it's beyond what we should be teaching. Martial arts classes should be martial arts not primary schools, I do understand that children in the US start school at a later age than they do elsewhere but surely it can't be down to martial arts instructors to teach what schools and parents should be?

Maybe this is a cultural difference. In the US, schools these days mostly focus on teaching academics. Things like art, music, physical education, character development, social skills, etc are more and more being sidelined in favor of more time for reading and math (and preparing for tests on reading and math, because school funding is often tied to good test scores).

So that leaves parents, extracurricular activities, and daycare centers to instruct kids in those vital non-academic subjects.
 

WaterGal

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Well most children's classes are like that but there are posters who have said it's mostly games etc rather than actual martial arts taught at 3/4. My opinion has nothing to do with whether they put their skills to use or not, especially as they don't seem to learn any martial arts techniques, my objection is having classes of children as young as three. If it's for physical exercise etc then that's what it should be presented as, perhaps a 'toddlers gym/ready for martial arts' class or suchlike rather than a martial arts class if they aren't actually doing martial arts.

I assume you're talking about my post. The games we do are designed to teach specific martial arts skills, but we dp very much present the class as only teaching very basic beginner-level martial arts skills, alongside basic motor skills and character development. Parents know this going in. They don't expect their kid to be doing full-contact sparring and breaking bricks at age 4 lol.
 

Tez3

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Maybe this is a cultural difference. In the US, schools these days mostly focus on teaching academics. Things like art, music, physical education, character development, social skills, etc are more and more being sidelined in favor of more time for reading and math (and preparing for tests on reading and math, because school funding is often tied to good test scores).

So that leaves parents, extracurricular activities, and daycare centers to instruct kids in those vital non-academic subjects.


we have a lot of organisations here that children join, there's Girl Guides, Scouts, St John's Ambulance Brigade, Girls Brigade and Boys Brigade, Girl's Venture Corps, Pony club, Woodcraft Folk, Police Cadets, Air Cadets, Royal Marines Cadets, Navy Cadets, Army Cadets, etc etc. We also have youth clubs, Outward Bound and more which are for all non academic subjects. We have the sports clubs and academies as well of course.

If you are any kind of daycare centre here though, as I said you have to be registered and inspected, with a specific curriculum to follow.
I think that as we have so many sports and youth organisations it leaves the sports organisations free to follow just what they do, without having to do anything else. There's lots for pre schoolers to do, I can't keep up with the things my granddaughter does and she's only one, so parents perhaps don't look for things in martial arts classes they would expect to find elsewhere.
 

Tez3

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I assume you're talking about my post. The games we do are designed to teach specific martial arts skills, but we dp very much present the class as only teaching very basic beginner-level martial arts skills, alongside basic motor skills and character development. Parents know this going in. They don't expect their kid to be doing full-contact sparring and breaking bricks at age 4 lol.


Sorry, no it wasn't yours. It was the post I quoted above my comment, the one from JR.
 

dvcochran

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The Budokwai is Judo though, it's not just a school or even a club, it's the Budokwai, has been for over 100 years. (there would have been no International Judo Federation without the Budokwan ) As I've already said above though, it doesn't have classes it runs sessions for the children and their parent/carer/guardian to participate in as well in the dojo. It's not classes for young children on their own. Is that how the majority of classes are run, because if they are for childcare they can't be a parent and child one can they? the parent/adult and child sessions are more the norm here than child alone classes.
No, you are correct that parent and child are not in childcare at the same time. I do feel classes/sessions is semantics in the context however.
 

Tez3

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No, you are correct that parent and child are not in childcare at the same time. I do feel classes/sessions is semantics in the context however.


Not really semantics, class = A class is a course of teaching in a particular subject. (Class definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary)

session = a period of time or meeting arranged for a particular activity:
SESSION | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary.


One thing to bear in mind is that what I said refers to normal British people, the aristocrats here however have nannies then send their children to boarding school when they are seven thus saving all that bother of bringing them up.:cool: I kid you not.
 

Gerry Seymour

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I assume though the parents aren't involved in the actual class as with the Budokwai? Those sessions aren't classes and they are for the parent/guardian/carer to do with the children.
My granddaughter who is now one, does a lot of different sessions with her parents, sensory, swimming, music etc. she's just started walking so will also being doing gymnastics and most likely Cheer but these sessions are also done with 'their' adult until school age (4 and a half to five here).
I'm not aware of any that bring in the parent/adult as part of the class on a regular basis. I have seen a couple of schools where the parent had to be in attendance at all classes, though even that appears to be an exception.
 

Gerry Seymour

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Not really semantics, class = A class is a course of teaching in a particular subject. (Class definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary)

session = a period of time or meeting arranged for a particular activity:
SESSION | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary.


One thing to bear in mind is that what I said refers to normal British people, the aristocrats here however have nannies then send their children to boarding school when they are seven thus saving all that bother of bringing them up.:cool: I kid you not.
In the US, many activities for kids are described as "classes", though at early age groups they are more activity sessions.
 

WaterGal

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we have a lot of organisations here that children join, there's Girl Guides, Scouts, St John's Ambulance Brigade, Girls Brigade and Boys Brigade, Girl's Venture Corps, Pony club, Woodcraft Folk, Police Cadets, Air Cadets, Royal Marines Cadets, Navy Cadets, Army Cadets, etc etc. We also have youth clubs, Outward Bound and more which are for all non academic subjects. We have the sports clubs and academies as well of course.

If you are any kind of daycare centre here though, as I said you have to be registered and inspected, with a specific curriculum to follow.
I think that as we have so many sports and youth organisations it leaves the sports organisations free to follow just what they do, without having to do anything else. There's lots for pre schoolers to do, I can't keep up with the things my granddaughter does and she's only one, so parents perhaps don't look for things in martial arts classes they would expect to find elsewhere.

Where our martial arts school is, there just aren't that many organized activities for preschool age kids. There are a couple of martial arts schools that offer a preschool program, as does the dance studio, and I the soccer league does too. Scouting doesn't start until grade school, and military cadet-type programs are only for teenagers. I just checked the town rec center website, and they don't have a single activity listed for this spring for kids under 5. I think the town yoga studio maybe has a mommy & me toddler class. But yeah, there just isn't much. (Edit: I just thought to check the town library. They do have a weekly preschool storytime, at 10am on a weekday.)
 

dvcochran

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Where our martial arts school is, there just aren't that many organized activities for preschool age kids. There are a couple of martial arts schools that offer a preschool program, as does the dance studio, and I the soccer league does too. Scouting doesn't start until grade school, and military cadet-type programs are only for teenagers. I just checked the town rec center website, and they don't have a single activity listed for this spring for kids under 5. I think the town yoga studio maybe has a mommy & me toddler class. But yeah, there just isn't much. (Edit: I just thought to check the town library. They do have a weekly preschool storytime, at 10am on a weekday.)
What do you think is causing a change in the trend? I am seeing a similar occurrence in our town as well.
I do think the group exercise model is changing.
 

Tez3

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Where our martial arts school is, there just aren't that many organized activities for preschool age kids. There are a couple of martial arts schools that offer a preschool program, as does the dance studio, and I the soccer league does too. Scouting doesn't start until grade school, and military cadet-type programs are only for teenagers. I just checked the town rec center website, and they don't have a single activity listed for this spring for kids under 5. I think the town yoga studio maybe has a mommy & me toddler class. But yeah, there just isn't much. (Edit: I just thought to check the town library. They do have a weekly preschool storytime, at 10am on a weekday.)


That seems a real shame, my granddaughter from a couple of months old was going to messy play, song groups, swimming, baby yoga, sensory play, 'boogie' babies. Once they can walk there's even more things, drama, dance, gymnastics, toddler keep fit etc and from two there's language classes ( my granddaughter will be learning French at school when she's two, she's in the nursery class at her Prep school now, she's one).
The problem may be here now though that there's so much for children they are rushed around doing so much, they have activities every night, I know our martial arts kids and our Brownies and Rainbows do, fitting in siblings activities too means children arriving late/early or leaving late/early etc. I do wonder if the children aren't doing too much but there is a big thing here about having children 'do' things'.
 

dvcochran

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That seems a real shame, my granddaughter from a couple of months old was going to messy play, song groups, swimming, baby yoga, sensory play, 'boogie' babies. Once they can walk there's even more things, drama, dance, gymnastics, toddler keep fit etc and from two there's language classes ( my granddaughter will be learning French at school when she's two, she's in the nursery class at her Prep school now, she's one).
The problem may be here now though that there's so much for children they are rushed around doing so much, they have activities every night, I know our martial arts kids and our Brownies and Rainbows do, fitting in siblings activities too means children arriving late/early or leaving late/early etc. I do wonder if the children aren't doing too much but there is a big thing here about having children 'do' things'.
Tez, are the programs you listed free to the user in your area? Either way how are they paid for? If the programs are 'prepaid' through social government intervention, this adds to my question to Watergal earlier. What do you think is causing attrition in these kinds of programs?
Tennessee is going into it's fourth year with unemployment under 3%. Disposable income is readily available. However I am seeing reduction in many of the same programs. I have been trying to dissect this trend for some time.
I think I will start a new thread regarding this and see if other people will jump on with their thoughts and opinion.
 

Tez3

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Tez, are the programs you listed free to the user in your area? Either way how are they paid for? If the programs are 'prepaid' through social government intervention, this adds to my question to Watergal earlier. What do you think is causing attrition in these kinds of programs?
Tennessee is going into it's fourth year with unemployment under 3%. Disposable income is readily available. However I am seeing reduction in many of the same programs. I have been trying to dissect this trend for some time.
I think I will start a new thread regarding this and see if other people will jump on with their thoughts and opinion.


Some are free others you pay a small fee about a pound or two a session. Just about all of the activities are held in sports/leisure centres ( council run usually) village halls, church halls etc as are most martial arts classes here. Libraries here offer free activities for under fives as well as older children. We also have the usual mothers and toddlers groups and playgroups, nurseries though are usually private run and regulated by the government, they have to follow the national curriculum. In England all children aged 3-4 and some 2 year olds are entitled to 15 hours ( a week) free childcare, this has to be at a nursery or registered childcare facility. Scotland is slightly different with more free hours, not sure what Wales and Northern Ireland do.
Most of the groups that offer baby and toddler activities are run by self employed people usually mums themselves, it's actually an ideal situation. Teachers, nursery, dance, gymnastic etc teachers with small children are the usual people who do this, it fits perfectly with their work needs and usually their qualifications.

The Duchess of Cambridge launched a national questionnaire to better understand the needs of early childhood, those results are expected soon. Early Years - Royal Foundation
 

geezer

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Tez, are the programs you listed free to the user in your area? Either way how are they paid for? If the programs are 'prepaid' through social government intervention, this adds to my question to Watergal earlier. What do you think is causing attrition in these kinds of programs?
Tennessee is going into it's fourth year with unemployment under 3%. Disposable income is readily available. However I am seeing reduction in many of the same programs. I have been trying to dissect this trend for some time.
I think I will start a new thread regarding this and see if other people will jump on with their thoughts and opinion.

That should be an interesting thread. I live in another "Sunbelt" state that prides itself of keeping taxes low to stimulate the economy. Unemployment is lower now, but I don't think relative income or discretionary spending is universally up. Statistics and damned statistics, ya know. ;)

As a high school art teacher, I've seen nothing but cutbacks and larger classes. With 25 years in to date, I've seen our school's department go from four full-time teachers in the visual arts to just one. I kept my job by teaching more "preps" (different subjects and/or levels) and by taking assignments at other schools. That's OK, because next year I will be back at my home school as the sole art teacher ...covering everything!

Now I hear that our district has plans to further save money by going to a different schedule which will increase our class load by 20%, but not to worry, they are considering offering a 2% raise (which sounds like an 18% net loss in compensation to me). For those of old enough to get medicare, retirement is an option. Not for the rest, since the district changed the contract and we no longer can keep our medical insurance after retirement.

All told, things have not gotten better! My economic situation is way worse than that of colleagues who retired around 2008 at the beginning of the "Great Recession". I guess this could be a regional thing, but if middle-class people in other professions across the country are feeling the same squeeze, that could be affecting enrollment in Martial Arts classes as well. I'd like to hear your perspective when you start that thread! :)
 
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JR 137

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That should be an interesting thread. I live in another "Sunbelt" state that prides itself of keeping taxes low to stimulate the economy. Unemployment is lower now, but I don't think relative income or discretionary spending is universally up. Statistics and damned statistics, ya know. ;)

As a high school art teacher, I've seen nothing but cutbacks and larger classes. With 25 years in to date, I've seen our school's department go from four full-time teachers in the visual arts to just one. I kept my job by teaching more "preps" (different subjects and/or levels) and by taking assignments at other schools. That's OK, because next year I will be back at my home school as the sole art teacher ...covering everything!

Now I hear that our district has plans to further save money by going to a different schedule which will increase our class load by 20%, but not to worry, they are considering offering a 2% raise (which sounds like an 18% net loss in compensation to me). For those of old enough to get medicare, retirement is an option. Not for the rest, since the district changed the contract and we no longer can keep our medical insurance after retirement.

All told, things have not gotten better! My economic situation is way worse than that of colleagues who retired around 2008 at the beginning of the "Great Recession". I guess this could be a regional thing, but if middle-class people in other professions across the country are feeling the same squeeze, that could be affecting enrollment in Martial Arts classes as well. I'd like to hear your perspective when you start that thread! :)
Some people are doing better, and some arent. I think it depends on what field youre in and where you live. I dont think its really a economic class thing.

I taught at a private school, and was laid off at the end of last school year. Enrollment was down for the however consecutive year, and grades 7 and 8 were eliminated. Luckily I got a job at a biotech pharmaceutical company right after my last paycheck from the school, and Im making more than twice what I was making as a teacher, so the economy is great for me :)

My wife teaches at a public school. We have a teachers union in NYS so schools cant do to our teachers what theyre doing to you and teachers I know in non-union states. That stuff is just awful. I know firsthand because being a private school teacher, I was in the same boat as you. Private schools arent under the NYS teachers union here.

Many of my friends and family are doing better than they were a few years ago. Some a lot better, some just a bit better. A few arent doing as well, but theres a few other factors at play.

I guess its really about what you do for a living and where you are. Some places have a lot more opportunities than others. And some people have a lot more opportunities than others.
 

geezer

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FYI: Yes, Arizona is a "Right to work state". Unions exist, but are generally very weak, expensive to belong to, and pretty ineffective at influencing anything at the district or state level. Last year, we had a massive "Red for Ed" march and demonstration which shut down the schools for a week. But that was a broad grass roots movement supported by educators of all stripes (and secretly by many administrators) -not specifically a union thing. Unfortunately, many of the promises for raises, reduced class size, and so forth never materialized after the teachers returned to the classrooms.
 
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