Originally posted by Teejei on tribe.net.Happy New Year everyone! Im about to launch my new sessions in a week. New changes: Course-only payment may help attendance and have students understand that understanding comes with commitment. Also, in addition to Fundamentals and Combinations classes, there will be a 30 minute Improv class. Hopefully this will go well and I can expand to a third hour. My goals this spring are to generate more beginner students, and get ATS out into the community through gigs with my advanced students. I am also working on a few special projects centered around ATS - some learning/practice resources. Carolena and I were developing some great ideas, but I havent been able to give it much time. I am excited to have these great ideas come to fruition this year. br/br/Some curriculum goals this year: More focus on the conditioning of arms and back and good ATS arm technique (what I feel makes or breaks an ATS presentation for sure); for my more advanced students: understanding the real nature of using the ATS system to express oneself as a leader, and how to become a truly supportive follower. Also, how to really make the chorus dynamic by differentiating moves from the feature, and choosing when to do a move in unison. So much more to come...br/br/How about everyone else? What are you preparing to ramp up in your classes? br/br/-Teejei
Originally posted by Teejei on tribe.net.Bumpity-bump: Come on ladies, I want to hear about your classes! Discussing them is so valuable not only to us, but to new teachers who have just begun. br/br/My classes are going pretty well; I am really enjoying one student who is fairly new at dance, but is a bit of a natural. Her greatest talent however, is that she asks great questions throughout the class. Her eye for detail will take her far in ATS.br/br/Our new Improv jam was a lot of fun as well. Its nice to be able to go full-bore with a group, throwing all moves and doing fun combos, then going back at the end of the song and assessing problem areas etc. Its very productive to not only point things out to the students, but to directly ask them to assess themselves and how they feel the drill went. br/br/-Teejei
Originally posted by Jennifer on tribe.net.Hi Teejei - br/br/I just added my second Level 2 class, so I have two each of Level 1 and 2. Eight of my level 2 students are coming to both Level 2 classes, which is awesome. I am hoping to swap one of my Level 1 time slots for a Level 3 in March - I think some of my girls might be ready by then.br/br/I started my session by asking all of my level 2 students to share with the class a goal, intention, or focus they have have for this session or this year. (I also gave them a week to think about it and the option to skip this if it was too personal.) I found this really enlightening - goals/focuses included working on the shimmy, concentrating on posture and arm positions/shapes, dance less in the brain and more in the moment, and one overweight woman who said since she has been dancing, she has been learning to be more accepting of her body in class and outside of class, and she wants to keep on working on and enjoying this feeling.br/br/My main teaching goal is to give more personal feedback/corrections to my students. My main teacher rarely gave corrections, so I havent had a good model on how this is done. I do give them, and I give a lot of whole-class corrections (really, everyone needs to get their elbows up, not just 1 or 2 people), but I want to be able to give them more and not worry they might think I am being mean. 😉 I am telling myself that they are paying me to teach them to dance, so they should expect it. 🙂
Originally posted by Sandi on tribe.net.Teejei, we sometimes get those people come though our classes and then at some point, they tend to move towards fusion. Dont know why, but its happened enough times to where Ive noticed it. But it sure is nice to have those questions asked. Even better, is when they ask the question and actually can correct it within the class hour. Yeah.
Originally posted by Sandi on tribe.net.Jennifer, what sometimes helps is to speak to them from a former students standpoint. They want to know that you werent just born doing this. I tend to mention stories of when I was taking classes and trying to make my body do these things and how it felt. They get a little humor out of it and a little push to keep trying. It is one thing to show your authority (which really comes from walking the walk), it is another to show generosity in being helpful. So, if youre coming from a place of help, rather than, "do this cuz I said so" I think the overall critique is less about "hey, youre doing it wrong", but more about "hey, lets all get on the same page."br/br/What helps me feel better about critiquing is saying and demoing, "what Im seeing is, this [demoing the incorrect way]" -- "what I want to see is, this [demoing the correct way]". That way, its not me looking frustrated, but just showing them what theyre doing and how it is different from the right way.br/br/But, I do have to say, there will be some that you do have to point out and be blunt with. And sometimes people really do and say they want that individual correction.
Originally posted by Sandi on tribe.net.P.S. I really like how you asked your L2 about goals for this year. That probably got them thinking more about what theyre doing, rather than just showing up to class with empty brain and moving around. ;}
Originally posted by Jennifer on tribe.net.Thanks, Sandi - it was a really useful exercise. A lot of the women were saying "Hey, I should work on that, too!" as the others spoke, so I think it also helped them become aware of what is possible. Again, I can say over and over again "lift the elbows, no pointy elbows," but it seems to be heard differently when one of the students says "I am concentrating on stronger arms and keeping them lifted." I think a lot of them are feeling like they have been through Level Two 3 or 4 times now and might be a bit bored, but when they heard all of each others goals, they realized that there is so much more to do in Level Two.br/br/Thanks for sharing the tips on giving feedback. I actually do a lot of sharing my own student experiences, and showing them "I am seeing a lot of THIS and it should look more like THAT," but it is the individual, one-on-one, unique-to-a-person stuff that I have a harder time with. It is getting easier, though, already, especially because I have told the class that I will be doing it more often and that if they dont want corrections, or think I am being mean, to please talk to me after class or send an email. I have gotten to know most of their personalities quite well by now, too, so I know how much feedback, how often, how to phrase, and how much it should be balanced with positive comments for each student. A few of them actually told me they wish I was meaner - well see how they feel in another month or two. ;)br/br/Sorry to hijack your thread, Teejei!! I hope some others chime in with their 2011 progress and news, too. 🙂
Originally posted by Hollie Schmidt on tribe.net.Hey Central Atlanta, lol Teejei,br/Well down here in South Atlanta I am changing up my Level I after talking to several other SS. I have decided that 6 weeks for the level I class is not enough time so as suggested by many SS I am offering it as a 10 week session and doing 4 per year (Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall). I am not allowing drop-ins for this level anymore because I wanted a commitment and I felt it highly disrupted class especially for those students that have commited to the class for the whole time period. I started Winter session last week and had 8 new students. This class runs from Jan 19th -March 30th, so I am hoping it will be enough time for my students to fall in love with ATS and become addicted as I am. I also think the ten weeks will not be so overwelming to my students material wise. I am also sticking with the school schedule in my area because I realized no one comes to class when school is out. I have heard great things about your class Teejei and I have been referring you out for the central area, actually had a girl call last week off the FCBD site and sounded promising for you, she was not in my area. =) Shimmies, Hollie
Originally posted by icy on tribe.net.Wow, this year is already showing me how being flexible is a good thing, at least where I am in Seattle. br/br/My students seem to be amping up there game which is of course helping me amp my own up. :)br/br/I started a Level 3 class this Fall/Winter and it seems to be bringing on more commitment and interest as a whole from my current students as well as my other two classes started adding people and lots of enthusiasm. YAY!br/br/With this addition of the Level 3, I knew that I was going to have to open up the opportunity of a formalized student troupe for those in Level 3. Of which I announced last night, I have the all levels student performances and now "Off the Cuff Tribal" Advanced Student Troupe. I am trying to push all my students with goals and something to aspire to in this dance form. YAY!br/br/Now, with all this going on in a shorter period of time. I am debating the need for reopening a mid-week class(es) and I have been asked to bring a class south of Seattle either one or twice a month at the least. So, I am looking into doing this too. YAY!br/br/I did some schedule planning and I see from Tues through Thurs a minimum of three different Tribal instructors with multiple classes on those days. Where my current Sunday class, stands alone outside one class that is slightly before mine start. So, I am torn, but yet one Tribal instructor left the "market" and another new one picked up her spot. I am just a bit uncertain of what I need to do next at this moment. Not so Yay...br/br/Side Note: What I am finding difficult is my level of desire for the dance is not equaling the time I have available with working full time at another job, so this is making it more difficult. But on the flip side, I think it is causing me to be more deliberate on what step needs to be taken next, instead of acting in haste or reacting to other things happening in the city. Sorta Yay!br/br/I am also trying to bring Momma C up to our area, outside of the Cues & Tattoos venue for more master classes and/or GS/TT stuff, but that takes the scheduling and finding the space/time/finances etc to move forward. *crossing fingers yay*br/br/There is where I am at at this very moment. :)br/
Originally posted by Carrie on tribe.net."Side Note: What I am finding difficult is my level of desire for the dance is not equaling the time I have available with working full time at another job, so this is making it more difficult. But on the flip side, I think it is causing me to be more deliberate on what step needs to be taken next, instead of acting in haste or reacting to other things happening in the city. Sorta Yay! "br/br/Tell me about it sister. So many of us are working full time, directing troupes, teaching, etc. Were crazy! I started a new job in September, which I love, but I get paid Salary so I work a lot more hours for no more money. These are tough times.
Originally posted by Leslie on tribe.net.I started teaching ATS in September, so now, six months into it, is a good time to reflect. br/br/I am happy to say that my two classes (in two cities) are expanding both in number and duration. I have about six students who have been through level one at least twice, so I started teaching level two moves in a L1/2 combo class (didnt have the numbers at that time yet). Now I have brand-new students coming in to the mixed level class and getting a tiny bit frustrated. I added another half hour for higher levels and performance tips, but may have made a mistake in inviting all. I think it is time to split them up and keep them "pure." That means I will have to be honest with each dancer as I make recommendations. Its truly a "one room schoolhouse." Some ladies have been taking L3 (plus) as long as I have! Others just walked into the world of dance a few weeks ago. One student is 15; another is 58. I love the diversity and the challenges, dont get me wrong! Its time for a dancer survey to see what they need and want, and a goal setting activity. Love that idea!br/br/Another project last summer was to host "Half-a-Hafla" events every two weeks, where dancers would informally meet at local parks to dance in the warm afternoon sun. It was delightfully picnicky and fun, very low key, and great. Sometimes ten people (even babies and musicians) would show up, other times it was one other gal. I think I will continue, but they will be less often.
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