During the December holidays last year, I made extensive planning on what to do with my children and where to bring them. I also wanted to them to experience new activities and find out what might interest them and if they would like to attend any enrichment classes. Enrichment programmes are not just confined to academic subjects, but also activities that help promote greater physical fitness or arts appreciation. But the thing with young children is, they want to explore different things and enjoy novelty. So it is hard to tell which enrichment activity can sustain their interest for the long run. It is also hard to decide what course to commit to for several months at a stretch without having a taste of what's in store for the children. Hence, look for FREE trial classes!
2. Korean Taekwondo Martial Art Academy (KTMA)
KTMA provides children classes from age 3 onwards. Tiny Tots are for ages 3-4, Junior Tots are for age 5-6. They provide assessments to progress to different belt categories, and also training for competitions. My older son was closer to 5 years old, but because it was he had no prior experience at Taekwondo, they allowed him to be in the same Tiny Tots class as his younger brother as part of the trial.
The instructors are Korean and have Champion titles. We attended the trial class at the Novena branch, which is next to United Square. There's another branch at West Coast. There was a seating area for caregivers to hang around and wait for their children, with a TV screen to show what is going on in the clas without causing distraction to the kids. The children were taught punching and kicking and proper Taekwondo stances. But as compared to the mixed martial arts sessions, Taekwondo was much slower paced and less energy intensive. Due to the group being mostly 3 year olds in Tiny Tots, there was more fun and play with games and running around, rather than just going through a strict routine of disciplined kicking and punching.
Conclusion: The instructors were very friendly, and the session was light-hearted. Children were squealing and laughing a lot during the games time. My boys had fun but I think it wasn't exciting enough for them. If you want a session that really expends the children's energy, mixed martial arts would definitely be a much better option than taekwondo.
I was quite put off by the registration fee of $50, and the Gi which costs $90. That would set me back by almost $300 just to start both boys for the class. The minimum commitment is 4 weeks, one session each week. That would cost $140. If you commit for 12 weeks at a go, that would be $399, and if you have more than one child signing up, you can enjoy a special sibling discount of 10%, which makes it $378. That would be about $32 for each 1-hour lesson.
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