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Originally posted by Sarah H on tribe.net.Hi ladies! Ive been doing ATS since Sept of 08. I learned from Jenny Helms who was a sister studio to FCBD. I am very interested in continuing my education and have full intention to start online privates with Megha as soon as she gets home.. I also am saving $ to get GS..(i dont make much $) This past January, Jenny moved away and I was left with the choice of either lose ATS in Charlotte, or start teaching. I have two very close friends who help me and are sister studios and they make sure Im teaching things correctly, but i still have guilt feelings about not being GS, TT certified or being a sister studio myself. I am extremely passionate about ATS and I want to make sure the Charlotte ATS empire doesnt dwindle, but is it ok that Im teaching this fine art without my certifications? I review my videos constantly, I always ask Annie and Teejei questions if theres something i need clarification on and im very much teaching the way i was taught.. is this ok? Would Carolena approve? lol i know i sound like a dorky worrywort, but i really would like to be sure that im not doing anything wrong here. Thanks so much for all of your help! =-)
Originally posted by Carrie on tribe.net.Youre not doing anything wrong. I think MANY of todays best teachers started before they had any formal training out of necessity. I know I started out of necessity and then sought out official training as soon as I was able.br/And you dont have to be a Sister Studio to be a good teacher.
Originally posted by Sarah H on tribe.net.thanks so much Carrie! I worry about it so much because I have a lot of respect for Carolena and what shes trying to do and the message shes trying to convey. =-) this makes me feel so much better!!!
Originally posted by Hollie S on tribe.net.As long as you are up front with your students there should be nothing wrong with it. I fell into getting my GS/TT to fast and sort of glad I did not know how stressful the GS/TT was going to be. After getting my GS/TT I knew I was not ready to teach straight ATS and waited 8 months later until I had time to study under Devyani and Carolena a little bit more and get it right. If I had it to do over I would have waited awhile, got my GS and then taught it and then I would of applied for my TT a year or two later, but I am glad it wound up the way it did where I did not have time to get nervous. I seriously contacted Megha about GS and in less than 6 weeks I was doing both GS/TT....it was crazy fast. I did it for me and my teaching level and the support system.....I am not big on competetion and performing. I just enjoy the sisterhood of the dance and working in the group situation. After I taught a couple of months and realized how much I loved ATS and how I was so addicted and could not imagine teaching anything else, I applied for my SS. Business wise, I would just make sure you have dance liabilty insurance to protect yourself. You can never be too careful these days =) Good Luck!
Originally posted by Hollie S on tribe.net.Oh, I did teach fusion and caberet for 2 years before I got my GS/TT and when I was trying to learn ATS the closest pure ATS was Devyani in Birmingham. Now in ATL area there are three of us: Teejei, Jaki and I. It is so cool having sister-studios, so close but not too close for it to matter with student area, we are spaced out nicely =)
Originally posted by Sarah H on tribe.net.Thanks so much for your advice! I teach at Yasmines studio here in Charlotte, and I can find out from her what kind of insurance we have or if my students are covered in that. I know we use waivers but that doesnt mean i cant get sued. I work very hard to try to keep up and all my students know i am not certified. Most of the upper level girls have been doing ATS in our studio since long before Jenny left so they are very supportive of my endeavor. I am trying to rally all the ATS dancers in the East coast and make sure our community is strong. I also have no tolerance for competition... i love the sisterhood and cooperation that ATS is. Like i said, i have Annie in Boone who is ALWAYS helping me and giving me info and making sure im teaching things the correct way.. and Teejei is the whole reason i started ATS... she suggested it and i found jenny teaching here and started and fell in love... ATS is my life and i would love to continue teaching it because it keeps me progressing as well as i love to see the "light bulb" when people start understanding how things work.. i have a great group of women here who work very hard with me =) there is also Maria teaching ATS in Columbia and i try to touch base with her when i can. I found another sister studio out in Myrtle Beach and emailed the teacher there to try to make sure shes a part of the community as well but i have not heard back from her. . ive just recently started picking up on teaching fusion classes, but because about 90% of my dance history is ATS and the other 10% is cabaret, my dance vocabulary is limited so i can only do what ive seen and learned thus far (my choreographies are simple lol) br/br/Megha taught a workshop here about 3 months after i started dancing which helped me soooo much. Jenny was also an excellent teacher but now the closest other ats teacher is 2 hours away and up a mountain lol br/br/I have every intention to come take Teejeis classes as well =-) any time i can make it to atl ! next time im down there we should try to jam or something?!
Originally posted by Delia on tribe.net.As long as you have youre teachers approval to teach and youre not in direct competition with another certified teacher in your area theres nothing wrong with what youre doing.br/br/Theres a dancer in our area who took maybe 3 years of ATS with my teacher and decided she was ready to teach without ever even asking the teacher what she thought. Luckily my teacher has enough of a good reputation in the area that very few people are falling for it. br/br/Theres a right way and a wrong way to start your teaching career. Sounds like youre doing it right.
Originally posted by Hollie S on tribe.net.It is such a small world, I was with Maria in SC two weekends ago. She had Megha out for a two day workshop and I was trying to get the last bit of Meg before she left for India. You are so blessed to already have a community of dancers there wanting to dance ATS. I had a troupe for awhile but it recently broke in half and class size due to summer is very small. I would love to hang with you if you are in ATL, give me a call if your in town 770-301-3147. I love getting together with other ATS dancers =) Look me up on FB, Hollie Morgan Schmidt.
Originally posted by JoY H on tribe.net.Dooo eeeet.
Originally posted by AliChris O on tribe.net.And if you dont have an ATS teacher in area equal to 8.514.876 km² ? Im not joking... br/I started performing with a friend and her troupe about 2 years ago, and we discovered the hole process of learning and teaching ATS all by ourselves (with the dvds). After 6 months of practice and a couple of performances we had our brief first enconter with a ATS teacher from Italy . And after a hole year we were by ourselves again and more and more people wanted to learn ATS! So, we had to teach, first to our troupe-mates, then to our students and for everyone else that was interested about it, simple as that. I still feel akward sometimes, but as soon as I can ill get the GS and TT , but i really feel that what i teach and what i dance is ATS. Just plain ol fcbd style. br/Recently our Italy mentor became a SS and she came back and danced with us and the flow happened! Last week another friend that recently took GS and TT came to dance with us and the flow happend again!! I still feel a little of the boat, but each day gets me closer to the one ill meet Carolena and ill get my certification from her hands, so i just try to relax and feel confident about the hard work weve been doing and the aproval from the local tribal comunity that just keep giving us a marvelous feedback!br/br/Peace, and happy dancing!br/br/Aline, from Brazil.
Originally posted by Diana on tribe.net.Sally...I was at the same place you were about three years ago. It took me a long time to feel good enough to teach ATS. I had gone to a PURA and still felt guilty about teaching ATS...i didnt want to do it an injustice. Even after completing the GS and TT, I felt strange teaching it. But, if you know in your heart that youre being true to ATS and teaching it the way it should be taught, youre fine. Its awesome that you are keeping it alive in your area 🙂 xoxox
Originally posted by JoY H on tribe.net.Exactly-- Have respect for what you are teaching enough to stay on your game and make sure youre teaching it correctly, and go get it grrl!
Originally posted by JoY H on tribe.net.aaaannnddd---- an amazing teacher whom i respect told me years ago when i asked her about what to do when you didnt have any dancers to share your dream with, well you start your own classes and teach them what you are dancing! If you build it, they will come... *sorry-- but so relative*
Originally posted by Lucy on tribe.net.Quick question - what do you mean by direct competition? Teaching in the same city / district etc?
Originally posted by katie on tribe.net.Hi Sally,br/br/So many of us have been in your situation. My main reason for starting to teach was to have more dancers in my community. Believe it or not, I was encouraged by several experienced and TT-certified ATS teachers to teach a bit before going for my TT, as it would help sharpen my insights and questions so that when I received the training the territory in question would be more familiar. I feel that this was very good advice. It has been invaluable to have the opportunity to explore class formats, communication styles, sequencing, conditioning ideas, week-to-week flow etc. from a fresh, unbiased and unprogrammed perspective. My TT was cancelled due to unfortunate circumstances so I am still waiting for official certification, but have now had almost a year of teaching experience which I feel has been a very important preparation. I am going for my TT in November and feel even better prepared after the unexpected three-month extension of my "internship."br/br/One thing, though: I have not received payment for teaching ATS so far, except for a token stipend last year from the high school where I mentor some of the teenage girls in ATS. This was a personal decision I made in light of the fact that I consider this period of teaching my own apprenticeship, for which I am very grateful. It feels like an equal exchange between myself and my very patient and dedicated students. ( I teach another non-ATS bellydance class for which I get paid, as well as other movement classes, so I feel ok not getting compensated for this.) I also "teach" our troupe since not all of us have done GS, but again, I feel that I am receiving a lot in terms of feedback and the opportunity to refine my teaching skills.br/br/The main thing, as others who have answered this post have said, is to continue to give our lessons in the spirit of artistic generosity and integrity, and to keep a commitment to closely watching our own learning process and dance skills. I think its essential for all ATS teachers (TT certified or not) to be aware of the ways they can improve, grow as dancers, uncover their own weaknesses and blind spots, and deepen their students respect for the dance traditions, technical precision, musical awareness, positive group dynamics, and so on. If we are doing even a little bit to nurture these qualities then we should not feel guilty. Especially in places where there are no other options or where the only way to stir up the dance is by teaching it, our role is important and can be a gift to our communities if we remember to keep humility and curiosity. br/br/As my yoga teacher Sri Pattabhi Jois would say.... "Practice, and all is coming!"br/Good luck & enjoy yourself,br/Katie
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