So it’s been a while since I started teaching dance. In case you don’t know, I teach once a week at Celine Jessandra, it’s been about 4 months already. It’s nothing like leading a student group. There’s a lot I’ve picked up, a lot I’ve yet to pick up, but here are some initial thoughts:
- I’m still trying to find the best way to push my students to reach their potential. I guess it’s the same with teachers in all other fields – there’s only so much we can do. If someone really wants to perfect this art, that person needs to think about all the feedback given and practise like hell. Once a week isn’t gonna make a drastic difference to how well you dance. But I strive to push all of them as much as I can within that 1 hr… you paid to learn to dance, so imma make sure you learn something!! If you don’t push yourself, IMMA PUSH YOU.
- Some students make me perplexed. There are people who come in for class totally deadpanned, and don’t even seem like they want to try. I don’t understand then, why they pay to attend class. And then there was this performance we had, where some students didn’t bother turning up for rehearsals, or to memorise steps – EH THEN? How to perform? Are you not afraid of looking all weird on stage, with hundreds of pairs of eyes staring at you? Not paiseh that other people all know their steps and you’re pulling everyone else down cos you’re the only one who doesn’t?
- Another thing is… explaining dance steps. It’s one thing to show how a movement is done, it’s another thing to put it in words. I try my best to explain in full detail which angle which body part should go, and which muscle groups you should use; but if someone has never used that muscle in that way before, it’s very hard to explain!! (any ideas? tips?) I try to think of scenarios where you’d use that muscle (i.e. imagine pulling yourself with a pole in front of you / imagine there’s a drum behind you and you need to hit it with your back / imagine someone punching you from behind…). But there are so many instances where you’d never need to isolate certain muscles (esp with isolations)… then? I feel like hugging people like a koala to make sure they don’t move the rest of their bodies.
Much to learn, much to learn.