Recorder Karate Idea Bank

Recorder Test-a-Thon

Submitted by Andrea Cope, Texas

Idea posted 2006-03-08

We had our first Test-a-Thon. I left at the end of the day, let the dog out, recharged my personal batteries, and then set up in my comfy wicker chair right by the front door. I even wore my big fuzzy slippers, to emphasize that this was my time and it shouldn't be wasted. Having never done anything quite like this before, I didn't know what to expect. Between 4:00pm and 7:30pm, I listened to almost 200 tests. It was AMAZING!

Kids had to come with a parent. The line started to form about 3:30pm. Parents sat along the wall with newspapers and books, and no one seemed impatient. Everyone cheered and encouraged, and even the parents got into it. Each child got as much time with me as they personally needed: Some took one test and left; others got all the way to Grand Master (15 beads on top of 8 belts, CDEFF#GABBbCDE).

I decided beforehand that any child who took the time to come was going to earn at least one belt, no matter how hard I had to work at it. There was a group of girls who were having a slumber party afterwards. Some passed every test they tried, some didn't, but they were all o.k. with it. My explanation to a child who is really trying but not quite up to the standard is that I want them to be really proud of themselves when they earn that belt or bead, and I don't think they would be if I gave it to them that day. They seem to get it when I put it that way. A few took the tests they were ready for, went home, practiced, and came back for more. Some of the parents even brought me food and coffee. I will definitely do it again.

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