Wednesday, 23 July 2014

I am no longer Muddling in Moodle - 
I am now Swanning Around!

I am pleased to say that I have finished the on-line course for my PID Program. I have come away with some great information and valuable resources that should make my foray into adult education more enjoyable. As I began the course I was struggling to find the focus of this blog but I forged ahead and found that providing the information about learning was actually quite interesting. As I proceed from here I will try to keep the focus on learning but I may be a little more specific and focus on the subject of learning ballet.

I started in ballet classes when I was about 5 years old. The memories I have of the first class I took were that the teacher was the most graceful lady I had ever seen and she had beautiful red high heel shoes on. That day was the start of a love affair with dance that continues today.  While I have always loved to dance - I also soon learned to love to teach. What I found was that when my mentor (Betty Caplette) asked me to help her with the little children I would have to do things slower, more pronounced and with better technique. When you slow something down and define the parts you will inevitably become better at the performance of the task. I soon became a better dancer because I was a teacher - but I never had the burning desire to dance for anyone other than myself. I loved the stage - but I loved pleasing myself by mastering levels and steps for myself. I know I have found the "sweet spot" in turning a pirouette, a fouette and many other complex moves.

The love of teaching has not diminished. I love the moment when a light comes on in a student's eye because they see the subject differently because I explained it or demonstrated it to them so their brain could figure it out. While my kids were little I held ballet class one day a week with small classes as I felt it was good for my two daughters to take ballet for strength and coordination. More recently I have worked as a trainer for Elections Canada (Langley electoral district) and also Elections B.C. (Langley electoral district). I have found that I want to engage with adults in their learning process. I have used my self confidence of being a dancer to present myself in front of adults and I find that this is what I want to do when I grow up! With only one more course in my diploma program that qualifies me to teach adults - I am excited to find more things to teach and more ways of teaching.

Finally - for those that might not get the reference of the name change of the blog I will explain what Swanning Around means to me. While the phrase is an English euphemism for posing or posturing (Victoria Beckham is always swanning around in a little Gucci dress) - I will use it for another purpose. The swan is a predominant character in ballet (i.e. Swan Lake) and many dancers aim to be as graceful as a swan. What you may not realize about a swan is that while they are seemingly graceful above the water they are most certainly working like mad below the water to move their bodies around the pond. What we as dancers must do is appear to float from the waist up while the lower portion of the body does the bulk of the work with strength and support.