An American (Tribal) Girl

May 29, 2008 § Leave a comment

I start teaching dance class again next week. It’s been about two months since I took my class on hiatus. Now, my dance studio has expanded to twice the size, is getting a new name and is re-debuting next week. And so is my American Tribal Style class–in a new and (hopefully) more convenient time slot.

I’m a little nervous and not sure where to restart. I will have a couple brand new students. So, I suppose I should start at the very beginning again. Review will be good for all of us anyway.

It’s hard to start at the beginning. I get excited and want to show the class my very favorite moves–all at once! And I want to get to the advanced stuff right away so we can start performing the most fun and impressive things and show people what this dance form can be!

But I have to learn to have patience. Building a whole program from the ground up is a slow process that takes discipline and time. How long did it take me to learn the bulk of the ATS language? A couple years? Two or three? Hmmm….

Plus, I don’t have a huge student base yet–not enough for multiple classes–which means I teach one multilevel class. The challenge here is keeping the class fast-paced enough for the more advanced dancers while going slow enough to not scare off beginners. It’s a precarious balance.

And finally, there’s the time limits. I have one hour to teach my class. I wanted to use the same class structure that my American Tribal teacher used: warm-up, one fast move, one slow move, fake-it-till-you-make-it/leading circle, and a cool down. I have no idea how she managed to fit that into a single hour and still include proper posture, technique, equal break down and practice on both the right and left sides, intent, facial expressions, zils!… I tried this structure the first go around with my class and kept running out of time! I may have to turn it into alternating slow movement days and fast movement days. We’ll see.

So now, I just have to start, be patient and see how everything develops. Wish me luck!

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