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1:51 PM
@FuzzyBoots - Mobile checkins are handy for getting the fanatic badge. :)
What always threw me off was the UTC, I would check in twice in a day and then miss. :|
 
2:02 PM
@JohnP, continuing our dialogue from my question before
 
Hey hey! Welcome to the site, those are a couple of good questions. On my side, I'm not so much concerned about the testing, as I am the teasing. I would be concerned about any school that allows that.
@IAmSpartacus ^^
As I said, I'm ATA, although I've been in shotokan, ITF, WTF and kenpo before.
 
Hi - yeah that is my concern too. I don't want to just pay the fees, and do the time, and get the black belt, which l think is the case with the first school. I want my son to be proficient, so if that means getting further training at another school, then l am prepared to do that.
 
@IAmSpartacus Yeah, and that can be a danger. There are lot of schools in all federations that just collect the fees and send them along the chain. :(
What do you mean by "proficient", however? ABle to beat up 5 bullies on the playground?
 
As for the teasing, well what can l say but I agree. Maybe teasing was a bit harsh, lets perhaps call it friendly competitiveness between a group of boys who went to daycare together, school together, in class together, socialize together... In fact part of it is good, as it can be a great motivator, but obviously has negatives.
 
Or something else?
Ah, yeah, that I would discount as something among friends, unless your son is affected by it. There are some guys that I am still like that with, and I'm much older. :p
There is a fine line sometimes between "kids will be kids" and genuine "you suck".
 
2:10 PM
By proficient l dont mean beating up bullies. Of course, defending himself is key. In fact, l think what l mean about proficiency is more based on self confidence.
 
@IAmSpartacus If he is not getting self confidence from a school, I would not have him in the school. That should be first and foremost among what they learn from the mental side. If he has no confidence in his skills, you're paying an expensive gym membership and that is all.
 
School 1 instructor, when the kids come to testing, there is yelling, impatience and on some occasions tears. In my view, testing should be a confirmation of skills already learned, not a place to berate kids for not knowing.
Lack of confidence comes from a fear of getting yelled at by a Master who has no EQ. I should point out my son is still only 7 - which means you need to handle 7 years differently to a 17 year old.
 
@IAmSpartacus Yes. Tears will happen, kids get stressed and haven't learned to deal with it yet. But berating for lack of knowledge is a poor instructor. If they don't know it, don't test them and CERTAINLY don't pass them.
Like I said, I am ATA and we get knocked for "soft" black belts in a lot of communities, but they have far and away the best kids programs I've seen yet. My instructor would never get down on a kid that forgets their material, he simply wouldn't pass them. And if they aren't ready for testing, they don't get permission.
Honestly, there seem to be a lot of red flags on the first school, not sure I'd have my kid there (other than the fact that all his friends are there).
 
Sometime he doesn't pass them, but if he doesn't test them, how will he milk the cash cow? (Hence puppy mill comment). Honestly l have sat in class and watched black belts not be able to perform a proper spinning back kick. Sadly, School 1 instructor goes from room to room yelling, and 10 or 12 year old kids with black belts are teaching.
 
@IAmSpartacus Yeah, this sounds like a $$ machine and not much more. We have 12 y/o black belts assisting in class, and occasionally leading a warmup portion or similar, but not teaching the entire class.
 
2:18 PM
As l have contacted at least 6 other schools in the city, they ask what school he goes to now. The response has been laughter, and more often "enough said. Yes l know him".
 
We require 300 hours total contact hours of teaching, 100 hours for each of 3 different levels. Minimum age for a fully certified instructor is 16.
 
^_^ I made the change on your question, but I think you're looking for a "diploma mill". "Puppy mills" involve irresponsible forced breeding. "Diploma mills" involve buying a degree.
 
@FuzzyBoots - Good call.
@IAmSpartacus - They are also called "belt factories" and McDojo's, btw.
 
yeah l would agree. But try and explain this to a 7 year old who has been doing taekwondo for 3 years, all the way from Might Dragins to a senior class.
 
TBH, it sounds like this is a poorly run school that only wants the $$, and I wouldn't have my kid there. (And I now have a 4 y/o just starting in tiny tigers)
@IAmSpartacus Yeah, that's a tough conversation, but you are spending hard earned dollars for a substandard product. Other than his friends being there, would you be spending the same money for the same treatment in something else like piano lessons?
 
2:23 PM
I think the answer really depends on your goals and whether you feel it's worth the cost. Is he enjoying himself? Is he learning? Is the price of the school worth those experiences?
If the answer is yes for all three, I'd say it is worthwhile. If he's getting substandard instruction, it's unsafe, or it's too expensive for the entertainment / social benefits, then you're probably best off moving him to the other school, maybe encouraging his friends to also jump ship.
 
yeah l think l will pull him from the school, and dealing with the friendly competition seperately. (As a side note, one of his friends only got his red belt black stripe 2 months ago, and as on Monday had 1 stripe, and is testing in a couple of weeks. 1st Gup to BB in 2.5 months). Dont want to be precious, but the money is not the concern - what lesson am l teaching my son? To focus on the distinction, or the journey?
sorry - to focus on the destination, not the journey
 
{nods} If nothing else, from exposure to the other school, it seems your son likely now realizes that the skill of a black belt varies both between and within schools.
 
Yeah, that seems a bit short for 1st to BB. Ours is 6 months at a minimum.
 
We did a trial class at the school l want to take him too, in fact we went to 4 other schools and did trial lessons. But the one we want to take him to he LOVED it. It was the first time in months l saw him laughing and having fun, not watching in fear of being yelled at.
@FuzzyBoots - TBH at 7 l dont know whether he has fully grasped the variation between schools. He is however, well versed in the variation between instructors!
 
^_^ Discussions of belt factories always amuses me because I suspect I was in one when I was growing up in Kentucky, but I was a bad enough student that my teacher actually showed the integrity of not promoting me despite that it basically guaranteed me continued free tuition for the last year due to my mother having bought the "three years or until a black belt" contract.
it's also led to me actively avoiding belt testing in several of the systems I've done since, although in a few, that's resulted in me just getting belts at the end of class because I was coming in with experience, and the instructor didn't want a white belt doing upper-level techniques.
@IAmSpartacus: I guess my remaining question would be, how well do you feel we answered your question?
Are there any clarifications you want to put into your actual site question so that any answers now or in the future correctly target your needs?
 
2:36 PM
Well thank you very much @JohnP and @FuzzyBoots! You have made a concerned and confused parent feel more at ease, and helped me rationalize my way through a complicate decision. I am glad l reached out through this forum. I am pulling him from the school today and he will continue his Taekwondo journey at a new, more enjoyable, confidence building school! You guys rock.
 
@IAmSpartacus Absolutely. It's a lifetime journey (or can be), might as well make the best one you can!
You can always reach out in chat, there are lot of people with a ton of experience on the site.
 
I have posted an answer to my question, based on our discussion here.
 
@IAmSpartacus You won't get any rep from it, but you can accept your own answer after...48 hours?
 
Yes l believe so - it was more a crisis of conscience, than a strictly Taekwondo question l guess...
 
@IAmSpartacus: As a parent, you probably have this covered, but make sure to be perfectly clear to your son that this is not about him, that he didn't do anything wrong.
I know that I, despite being in middle school, felt horrible the one day my father pulled me out of class after a teacher decided I had to sit on the side instead of participating because I was late (during a snowstorm with icy roads).
@IAmSpartacus It's important to include discussion of mental, cultural, and even spiritual aspects of the martial arts as long as it's a situation with an answer that relates directly to said art.
 
2:50 PM
absolutely, l try to tell him that every day. I think he gets it, but it is not a single shot conversation, something that needs to be positively reinforced over a period of time l suspect.
 
@IAmSpartacus - I think you posted your answer on the wrong question. I'd delete it and repost it under your other question to avoid the unnecessarily harsh downvote.
 
Thanks @JohnP...newbie error
 
@IAmSpartacus yeah, some of the contributors here are a little rigid.
 
first world problems
 
definitely.
 
2:52 PM
^_^ Hey, it could be worse. We could be on Wikipedia.
 
::snort::
 
So l am thinking, since it is so nice chatting to you guys, if l should take up Taekwondo too? My wife does it, and is green belt at aforementioned school 1 (which is probably equivalent to a pink ribbon somewhere else)....
 
@IAmSpartacus Absolutely. I highly recommend martial arts to all ages. If nothing else, give it a try and see how the training goes.
Caveat: I have been a year round competing athlete for 46 years now. (Minus one year out for a ruptured achilles).
 
:) And if it doesn't work for you, there are a lot of martial arts out there. Personally, I'm into Capoeira these days. Less competitive, more about pushing myself, and I love the degree of play.
 
@FuzzyBoots Absolutely
If nothing else, it might help make the transition easier, "Hey, I'm going to start training too, so we can't go to both schools. Can you help me learn some of the techniques from school B?"
 
3:00 PM
+1
 
side rant: Why is there no good tutorial on using jquery/ajax to load an interactive php page into a div?
 
I did judo years ago, when l was not much older than my son... Yeah l think l will do it.
 
^_^ Got me there. I'm a lifetime desktop/embedded programmer, although now I'm learning web programming for my job at Google.
 
As for side rant - l am an IT guy, but can't answer that one....
 
Yeah, I tend to avoid the video tutorials, I don't learn well that way.
 
I'm working on a website that will display tournament statistics. (I'm on the team that runs the tournaments for our region). I've got a lot of the queries done, now working on a web framework for it. Got the encrypted login structure done, the tiered CSS menu system with access levels, now working on getting it to display stuff without having to refresh all the time.
 
johnmorrisonline.com/… unfortunately this one is a video
 
Thanks for the links. I had missed the republic one, taking a read through it.
Hrm...that's a good basic one, I've got to see if I can find one that is dynamic, so that I can send a target link to the same div.
 

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