Our first ever Green Star for exemplary behaviour went to Molly SALAN. What a star!. Now if you haven't heard about the star system at Mt Evelyn, this article will explain a few things. But first - this story is about Molly.
A student can earn any one of many coloured stars to wear on their Gi (uniform), but this one is different as it is a combined effort and assessment between her parents, her teachers and her karate instructors.
History is made by young Molly! She received the Green Star after many months of gaining ticks of approval from her parents, the club instructors, her school teachers and so on. This was by no means a simple "I'm good today, get a star tomorrow!". Molly was assessed at home, out at events, with friends, at school (by her teacher) and during class by the instructors. Molly needed validated good behaviour entries over months to get this - and now she is successful as the first recipient in 2016.(introduced this after trialling the new 'star' system)
The book you see being held is the Student Book and record of Mollys performances for all belts and star attempts.
Molly receives her Green Star in front of onlooking parents and students. A great example of ethics and discipline she leads the way today.
In support of Molly, Shae (the official club 'Mentor') gives her the thumbs up!
The stars and book explained.
So what is the star system all about? Now this type of system is common in some Martial Arts Schools and sporting clubs - but here it exists with a difference. The student book is received when a student first joins and it lists behavioural standards, expectations, pathways to success, instruction on how to tie a belt, everything you need to do to earn stars.
If children have constant achievable goals before them with positive rewards you would be surprised with the intensity of their want to gather them! We looked at how we quantify behaviour and ethics and discipline learnings within the club, and this book was born some years ago. We trialled the yellow star first which corrects how belts are tied. It corrected children's ability to tie a belt correctly and kicked off their first sense of independence within the club. Once assessed in class for the 6th time successfully, the child earns their first star! This is a club process and every time it is conducted, all children partake and it becomes a race to perfection to the befit of all.
These yellow stars took off and the next phase of stars was released.
In a previous article the Black and White Stars were issued to Matthew MOSS. This was in response to a challenge that was set in private between parents, the student and the head instructor.
It doesn't finish there. Over the last 3.5 decades we have searched for ways to increase a students learning about our founder, our history and the traditions we have ventured through to become what we are today. This star is the Blue Star!. A knowledge test conducted on-line to record the students knowledge checks and validate learnings. I know for a fact young Molly has already attacked that exam and will be tested very shortly in class in front of her peers! She will fill that Gi pretty quick I'm tipping.
So what about these accelerated students? How do we as club instructors deal with the super fast learners, and how do we keep them engaged in their classes and retain them? The book further deals with this by providing an accelerated program. The accelerated program issues no less that 10 silver stars for one arm and 10 gold for the other. Each star must pass the easy to follow the 'Accelerated' program chart in the student book.
So from here many intermediates remain engaged while passing through their belts and genuinely improving their fitness, health and knowledge. From this point they will have the option of doing further on-line courses listed at our dedicated elearning site - www.mymartialartselearning.com site.
The courses here step right up to adult standard and require study and even an interview or 2 with the instructors (keeps them on their toes too!). The contents of the elearning web site will be visited in another article, but from here you can see how student can make Martial Arts a guide for life, just like young Molly appears to be doing!