“Daddy, I want to take Karate!”"Mommy, Jimmy on the bus hit me again today”There are many reasons why parents want to sign their children up for Self Defense or Martial Arts classes. Once you have made the decision, now you are faced with many different options and questions. What style? How much does it cost? Is my child to young?Martial Arts and Self Defense StylesThere are as many different styles of Martial Arts as there are religions in the world. You have probably heard of Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Jujitsu, and even Aikido, but there are still numerous styles and offshoots of the Major styles.So what Style is the Best and what style should I choose?In reality, it is this author’s opinion that the style of Martial Arts your child will learn is not that important. What is important is the method of teaching and training that your child will undergo. With Martial Arts training your child should learn self-discipline, self-respect, and self-esteem, along with the confidence and ability to defend themselves.The Instructor, (or Sensei) is the key. I suggest that all parents visit several locations with their children to observe the Instructor at work. Make sure you visit a beginner’s class as well as an upper level class. The beginner’s class is where your child will start.Does the instructor’s personality and philosophy match your morals and ideals? Does the class participate in any “Eastern Religious” practice that doesn’t match your faith? Do you want your child viewing this instructor as a role model? Most children will look up to their Martial Arts & Self Defense Instructors as role models and will be in awe of their skills and abilities. Make sure that this person who will be dealing with your children matches your values.It is also important to view an upper level class. The beginner classes are usually very tame, and the teaching philosophy is tailored to a younger audience. However, the older the student is, the “real” teaching and training methods are put into effect. You may feel comfortable with how the instructor “teaches” the younger beginning students, but may not be comfortable with how they handle the older students.CostThe majority of Martial Arts & Self Defense Locations (or Dojo’s) run their business on a membership basis. Customers must sign contracts, where they are obligated to pay for a certain time period to participate. The locations are run like a gym membership, you pay for a certain length of time and may participate as often as you desire.Unfortunately, rarely are the “hidden costs” discussed when signing up for a class or membership. What are the hidden costs? The most over looked cost is the “testing fee”. In Martial Arts there are numerous skill levels that are equated to a belt rank. After a certain period of time and training, the student is ready to advance to a new level or belt in their martial arts style, and a “belt test” will be performed. This “belt test” almost always required the student to pay a “belt-testing fee”. I have seen fees from $50 up to $500 depending on the belt rank. Parents, make sure you inquire about these fees and are comfortable with them before you sign any contract.Another hidden cost is required items to purchase. Some locations require that you purchase a uniform with the schools logo. The average cost of these uniforms range from $30-$50. As the child advances in rank, protective sparring gear is required. Now this is normally mandatory for the child’s protection and safety, but can be expensive. Normal safety gear for Martial Arts consists of Foot Pads, Hand Pads, Head Gear, Mouth Piece, Groin Cup, and optional Spar Vest. Depending on the style and sizes all this gear together cost about $150 retail or higher.So Parents, factor in the total cost of classes, testing fees, and required equipment when making your decisions.AgeAt what age should my child begin Martial Arts or Self Defense? Now this is an often-debated issue. I have seen children as young as 4 years old participate in Martial Arts or Self Defense training. Some have been successful while others it was just to young. The age of which a child should start Martial Arts or Self Defense classes should be judged on an individual basis and be determined by the parents. Some key points to consider. Does the child have a good attention span? Has the child participated and flourished in other group activities? Is the child comfortable in larger group settings?If the child is currently enrolled in grade school and has no problem adapting to those settings or conditions then they should be considered old enough to participate and benefit from Martial Arts or Self Defense instruction.
Are Traditional Arts and Crafts for Kids that are done in Preschools Damaging Kids Self Esteem?If you are a preschool teacher you must have loads of arts and crafts for kids already prepared for the upcoming school year. Have you ever stopped to think of how beneficial these art activities are for your preschool students?Children love arts and crafts, and as nursery, and kindergarten teachers do not have to cover as much ground as older elementary classes do, they often fill up of their time with arts and crafts for kids.All curriculum, however, in the preschool classroom needs to be planned with basic skills for the children in mind.Developmental preschool education bases its curriculum guidelines on famous psychologists like Jean Piaget and Erick Erickson. Based on what they have discovered about how children learn is how we should be basing our curriculum.One of the things Erick Erickson discovered is that children are struggling with basic concepts at different ages and need to successfully navigate those stages before going on to the next stage.One of the struggles that preschoolers are dealing with is self esteem, how much do they trust themselves and how good they feel about themselves will determine their success in schoolTraditional arts and crafts for kids unfortunately does not help foster a good self esteem. How good can kids feel about themselves when all of the projects in the classroom are all identical with no individuality. Even teachers that say the children do the arts and crafts themselves still have identical looking projects.I remember speaking to a cousin of mine many years ago who distinctly remembers her kindergarten teacher holding up a model of what they were going to make for that days project and thinking to herself “Oh mine will NEVER look like that”Wouldn’t it be better if the children were allowed to create at their own level, to make mistakes in a safe environment that are not really mistakes at their age. This way by using the wonderful medium of arts and crafts for kids it is an opportunity for children’s self esteem to develop which will allow them to safely take new risks. What an important prerequisite for elementary school.I think its high time that preschool teachers start learning how to develop their art curriculums in their classrooms to incorporate non crafts projects instead of the traditional arts and crafts for kids
Prevention is better than cure so they say that is why a lot of people enroll in the gym, buy gym equipment and exercise to stay healthy, they even buy the freshest and most organic food in the market to make sure they get the optimum health that they need just to stay away from the big bills in the hospital. Nonetheless, there are people who cannot afford to have the best preventive measure in their without the assistance of the government, that is why many government agencies give assistance to those needy people for them to acquire their potential as people in the society which they also deserve. Health care program through out the world has been reform, revised for the betterment of each individual and to be fair to all.Health care is a curative or preventive ways which are given to people or individual in a given society and usually government agencies make effort in giving the best health care for those people under their territory. This is essential for them to grow as a nation and prosper as a nation which has citizen who are productive and healthy.Health care is important because if people are healthy they will productive individual in the society. They will also be enthusiastic and have a positive view in life. Since man power is very important in a country, leader of most nations give the best if not the best treatment to their fellowmen, vaccinations against sickness and educating people on how to have a good hygiene especially on the remote areas are practically one of the aim of the government to ensure that the people in their area will be in the pink. However, in some nations even if they try so hard to give the best health care there are still cases like HIV virus infection and other communicable diseases that they cannot control.Health is fairly expensive and for most countries this is not freely given. However, government agencies and other concern sector in the society make a lot of effort to formulate and create laws and policies for the welfare of all people especially for those who cannot afford and less fortunate.The importance of goo health care is vital for each and every people in the society, young or adult need to receive the best health care that they deserve as a part of their right to live and as a citizen of the world.