We have changed the way we decide who will test each month, and although it’s working out well, it has had some unexpected ramifications. Like, we didn’t end up having a Shim Sa last month. The two people who had their three tips did not have enough hours and the rest who had the hours, did not have their tips.
But it has resulted in both students and instructors knowing what skills are lacking and where improvement needs to happen. It also means students may go several months without testing since they will not test until they are truly ready. If parents have a problem with this, please bring it up with one of our black belts and we can discuss.
Tips and Tip Test Week
We do have a week set aside for Tip Testing, signing off the tip test sheets. We also encourage students to come to Open Mat on Friday after Tip Test Week to work on their tips.
However, those are not the only times students can have them signed. It can be done many other times.
- Before class if you arrive early.
- During class break.
- During weapons class if you can catch instructors/high rank students who are not working out or teaching.
- During siblings’/children’s classes. Some students arrive for class early because family members are in other classes. There is usually a black belt or two who can help you with your Tip paper.
Learning New Skills
Other than 10th – 9th gup, all Tip Test Forms include both old and new skills. (See all of our tip requirement pages here.) This ensures students keep skills they developed in their last belt as well as learning their new skills. However, we discovered we do not always teach every new skill with the same regularity.
Chances are, forms and one-steps will get regular and frequent practice. We make an effort to cover everything, but the Tip Test Forms allow you to keep us on track also.
If students or parents notice skills on Tip Test Forms that students have not learned, bring them up to an instructor. Students can also use the times noted in the bullet list to the left to ask instructors or higher ranks to help learn those skills.
Overall, we really like our new methods. They still have a few kinks but I think they will lead to better qualified and more skilled martial artists. I hope you agree.