Alltheskills’s Blog

July 4, 2009

Streetdance in urban and rural settings

Filed under: choreography, dance, Schools, streetdance — alltheskills @ 4:41 pm
Freezes and floor work

Freezes and floor work

One group showing excellent teamwork-check that smile!

One group showing excellent teamwork-check that smile!

This week Naomi has been dancing her way around Yorkshire. She started on Wednesday night at the Elland Road stadium in Leeds teaching for Education Leeds. This work involves working with a group of young people teaching a routine to Lady GaGa’s “Just Dance.” This is going to be performed at an awards ceremony in a few weeks time which celebrates the young people’s acheivements through the Playing for Success programme. The young people were great and had an impressive pick up rate, great enthusiasm especially as it was such a hot day.

Thursday Naomi was up bright and early to teach at Tadcaster Grammar School. The day was spent with Year 7 pupils introducing them to some basic Streetdance steps and moves before letting them choreograph their own routines in groups. The day was booked through the school’s Enterprise manager and the aim was to develop student’s creativity skills as well as team work and communication skills. All these skills are seen as part of Enterprise.

There had been a Streetdance club at the school the term before and you could see a real difference in terms of skill and confidence between those who had been members and those who had not. However, most pupils made a very good attempt at the choreography task set with quite a few references to the late Michael Jackson and also Diversity off Britain’s Got Talent!

On Friday it was back to Tadcaster for more dancing with Year 7.  After ironing out all the potential kinks and perfecting the lesson plan yesterday these groups were able to produce a higher standard of choreography and perform with greater confidence. I was really impressed at how most of the groups stayed in time with each other and some of the stunts they pulled off which showed real trust and communication as well as creativity.

what made this morning even better was that some of the PE teachers joined in the session. after speaking with school staff we hope to develop more dance work at Tadcaster Grammar with a focus on involving boys in Streetdance sessions.

May 2, 2009

Our first gig.

Filed under: circus skills, Comunity, streetdance — alltheskills @ 8:22 pm

15th August 2008

Streetdance and Circus skills workshops for Artsworks in Teesdale.

The day began early at Middleton in Teesdale Village Hall where we were soon joined by the quietest group of girls we’d ever worked with. I think Sean and I have become used to boisterous inner city groups.

We started with circus skills in the morning, a break for lunch then a time of free play on the circus props. The day ended with a small showing for parents. Acts included a flower stick passing routine, juggling, some diabolo tricks and the dance routine to Flo Rida’s “Low.” Not bad for a day’s work.

Returning to work in Teesdale made me think about arts provision in rural areas and opportunities for young people to learn from arts professionals. There seems to be a lot of activity aimed at involving youth in urban areas in the arts under the assumption that somehow they are culturally disadvantaged. However, I think that those living in rural areas are at a disadvantage too, often living a long way from arts venues and cultural hubs and there seems to be a lot less effort at cultural engagement with these groups.

what can we do?

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