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 Post subject: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2000 6:04 am 
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<BR>i need to create a syllabus to present to my<BR>new employer. I've worked in the same studio for about 15yrs and thru default was never required to present a written plan as they new me and my methods very well,i relocated and am at a new studio.<P>MY QUESTION IS as employers/studio owners<BR>how would you like to see it presented re<BR>order, content,etc. any comments would be appreciated.<BR><p>[This message has been edited by grace (edited October 23, 2000).]


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2000 6:43 am 
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Hello J - a very interesting question that you present. I once had a similar experience. After many years of teaching at the university I was suddenly asked for my teaching plans - syllabus - for the ballet class.<P>In your mind I am sure you already know what you intend to present to your classes. For instance for beginners you would probably need to include the basic ballet positions of feet, arms, head, body.<P>You would be introducing them to basic barre work with the intent to introduce them not only to the order of the barre but also basic placement of the body. It depends on how detailed the presentation needs to be as to whether your employers actually want you to delineate the exact exercises at the barre you intend for your class. If so, you will also need to indicate the tempo you will be using.<P>Then I would think you would want to begin to transfer the basics learned at the barre to the center. A fundamental tendu, the beginnings of port de bras, a simple adage acclimating the student to unsupported balance. Then something with movement, a basic pas de bouree or balance' to give the student the sense of moving through space. A small jump in first position, might be considered. <P>I would begin to introduce the diagonale so they can feel that line in space, too. A simple slide and hop (saute' arabesque). Then the final reverance with a simple arm. That way the protocul of the ballet class is introduced - we don't just walk off.<P>I would then indicate what I hoped to accomplish by the end of the term - giving my goals for the class and how I intended to reach those goals. <P>After teaching for 15 years - apparently successfully - I am sure you have this all in your mind - you just need to write it down. I hope this has been helpful - please ask any questions that you might further have. I have sure you will get a good response to your questions. There are lots of interested people here.


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2000 4:18 am 
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hi j - it never occured to me that it was possible to have a one-letter screen-name: very imaginative! i wish i had thought of that... Image<P>anyway, this needs to be brief, but i look forward to returning to this subject, in a day or two, with more time...<P>you don't say what subjects you teach, nor what level/s? that might help us to help you. i think basheva has given you a wonderful, and typically generous, answer...<P>i assume that the purpose of this is to demonstrate to your new employers that you know how to choose appropriate goals/outcomes for your classes, and how to structure the classes in such a way as to safely and efficiently 'get there' in the time allotted?<P>would a brief statement of one's teaching philosophy be appropriate?<P>probably you should not forget to mention dance safety considerations, such as warm-ups before strenuous activity, cool-downs at the end of class, appropriate pace of class(es), age-appropriate demands/challenges for the students,....there must be so many more things, but the priorities would perhaps depend on what you are teaching, and on the ages of the students, so perhaps you could fill us in about that?.... Image

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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2000 10:10 am 
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When I was first asked to write out a syllabus by the university - it was an extremely busy time for me - and I was rather irked that after all those years of teaching I had to actually write this out. But as I sat down to do it - it gave me a chance to pause and reflect.<P>I knew what to teach, I knew how to teach it, but this made me really concentrate on "WHY" to teach it. <P>For instance, the reverance at the end of class (some classes begin with it, too) is not just done for tradition - though that is certainly a valid reason to do it. It is done because:<P>Every dancer needs to know how to bow/curtsey.<P>The dancer must learn that in the ballet everything has a "finish" to it and that finish is every bit as important as the preparation and the actual execution. <P>A well done reverance is a thing of beauty - it gives the audience a chance to see the dancer in repose.<P>It adds grace to the performance.<P>The reverance should be in the same style as the class/performance, i.e. - classical, romantic, neo-classical, etc. <P>The reverance is part of the perforance and/or class - not a mere afterthought.<P>The reverance acknowledges the importance of the audience in the theater or the teacher in the studio.<P>And so, as I wrote out each part of the syllabus for the university I had to watch my pen make visible what my head already knew. When we do that it often clarifies our thoughts. It was a good lesson for me and not at all the waste of time I thought it would be. <p>[This message has been edited by Basheva (edited October 23, 2000).]


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2000 10:43 am 
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Here is a document, created by myself and a couple of teacher friends (please do not give me all of the credit). <P><I>Editor's Note: Due to length, this comprehensive document has been split into sections, within interlinked threads. Please see the other threads, linked to, below, for the further sections of this document. Thank You.</I><P>I am including it here as I feel it will contribute a great deal to this topic<BR>********************************************************<P><BR><B>Where To Begin:</B><P>1.- Identify if you are revising an existing "plan for learning", or if you are starting fresh with a new "plan" (curriculum: the plan for instruction, i.e. the goals, objectives, syllabi, standards, student expectations, desired student behaviors, etc).<P>2.- Clearly identify the needs: mission of your studio, parent/student/community/your own expectations, in short what is the mission and philosophy of your studio, what are the goals you want to set for your studio, objectives related to those goals, and what indicators you will have for demonstrating the mastery or achievement of the objectives. <P>Also you have to assume that the development, implementation and continuous assessment of the curriculum/syllabi involves everybody in your studio, and therefore must be based on your real capacities, that is, this process must be feasible. <P>Many studios here that I know of down here, plan a lot in paper and then they have many obstacles in carrying it out, for example, teacher preparation or lack of time and willingness of everybody to participate.<P>3.- Have clear and written policies of everybody's responsibilities. For example, you and your teachers must make instructional decisions, set instructional standards, assess academic progress, design instructional practices and procedures, etc. <P>The administrator/owner of the studio: <BR>makes policy decisions, provides general directions based on those policies, reviews progress, makes operational /administrative decisions, establishes implementation processes and procedures, etc. <P>And parents and students might analyze conditions and results, might participate in reviewing some of those policies, procedures, might make suggestions, etc.<P>4.-So based on this, a way to go about could be:<BR>- Reassess and /or determine the mission, philosophy, and evaluate what you are doing now, in what ways or aspects you want to change what you are doing and the results you are getting.<BR>- Determine clear feasible goals for your studio<BR>-Do make decisions on the types of policies and regulations you want and need, write them out, eventually will have to be announced/distributed to the corresponding parties (teachers, parents, students).<BR>- Develop the curriculum (I will contribute more on this later).<BR>- Design a plan for continuous assessment, updating and revision of your curriculum (which includes the different syllabi for each of the classes you teach.)<P>********************************************************<P><B>Developing Curriculum</B><P>It is important I believe that each teacher /studio must try to develop its own plans of instruction. but there are general guides that might help. <P>There are certain premises that are basic to any well-rounded dance program - the first step is in deciding-reviewing your mission, philosophy and goals. <P>Depending on this, only then can you approach making the syllabi for the courses you teach, what, when, in what sequence, how to teach.<P>With this, you might realize you want to quit teaching some subjects, or teach others, or perhaps add levels and scope to the ones you are now teaching. Perhaps not only thinking in terms of what courses are popular and would leave you more income, but also, what courses could enhance your results and improve interest of the community in your studio. <P>Also, whether you are teaching dance as a form of complementary education for the individual, or as a recreative form, or to aspiring professionals, and so on. <P>One thing that small studios here have done is to try to interest their students in dance related activities such as light and scenery design, fashion-costume design, choreography, pedagogy, dance fitness, dance history and research, dance and sciences<BR>such as computers, nutrition, medical specialists, dance therapists and so on, by providing them with a vision of a successful future in the arts- the relationship between what is once a recreational activity or a "while I get married" hobby and the real world of making a living in the arts. <P>This has been particularly good by attracting young highschoolers who eventually do think seriously of a career in dance related areas, where parents and kids can visualize that the arts are not just for entertainment or a "business". <P>It is just a matter of how studios approach the study of this art form.<P>Dance as an art form must be given (allotted?) sufficient time to accomplish its goals, <P>It must be taught by individuals with adequate preparation, and be supported by the administration, that is, by the administrative procedures you carry out at your studios.<P>Here are some ideas that I particularly like, taken from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction! (who could have imagined)<P>Well:<P>A conceptually based curriculum identifies major premises within a given discipline, in our case, dance. <P>From these major premises, concepts are derived which in turn help to define skills, knowledge, and attitudes that must be acquired. <P>This process creates a framework upon which comprehensive curriculums can be built sequentially and logically. <P>The purpose of adopting a conceptually guided approach to dance education is to ensure that dance is presented as a creative art rather than as a purely imitative form of learning.<P>Concepts, which may be thought of as mental systems of abstract ideas, require higher level thinking skills than does imitative learning, which involves only memorization and repetition. <P>The conceptual approach to curriculum planning provides a way of relating specific subject-area content to the broader and more generalized goals of education. <P>Such bread goals as cognitive development, physical fitness, and cultural awareness are inherent aims of dance education. <P>By focusing on significant concepts derived from the major premises of dance education, students become involved in a creative inductive, and physically active process of experiencing, discovering, knowing, understanding, and applying concepts which fulfill overall goals of education.<P>So to begin with your curriculum for your studio, however small, it is good to write down some major premises to guide you in the process. <P>It would mean writing general statements of basic importance, to initiate the planning process in a teacher's thinking and understanding them helps lead students toward realization of the major goals of a specific discipline as well as those of education in general. <P>The characteristic distinguishing dance from other fields of study is the way in which major goals are accomplished- through the study of movement with aesthetic outcomes.<P>For example: <P>Aesthetics: appreciation of the fine arts, which entails applying sensory knowledge and artistic judgment to the expression of the nature of human ideas, feelings, and emotions and results in the creation of expressive forms valued for their own sake.<P>appreciation: sensitivity to, understanding of and awareness of aesthetic values.<P>Creativity: process by which original ideas, new combinations of ideas, or new relationships among ideas are formed and expressed.<P>Culturalization: process of developing understanding of and sensitivity to social and artistic expressions characteristic of particular societies or cultures.<P>Elements: The fundamental parts and principles of bodily movement- including time, space and force or energy, and their relationships.<P>Kinesthetics: a sensory modality which deals primarily with the perception of movement derived from receptor organs in the muscles, joints, and tendons. These receptors provide the dancer with information about position of body parts as well as speed, direction, rhythm, and force of movement.<P>Kinetics: changes of motion produced by forces and governed by laws of physics.<P>Self-awareness. An individual's knowledge of his/her personality, including emotional, physical and intellectual strengths and weaknesses.<P>Socialization: process by which individuals relate to others with the expectation of benefitting all involved.<P>These are just some examples of major premises that you might want to teach at your studio. Others might be included, of course.<P>Then you might want to give some thought as to which of these you would give more "weight"- that is, which of these premises are more important to you, and to what depth do you want your classes to reach each of these premises.<P>Next you would have to think or rethink what concepts you need to approach according to the premises you believe in. Concepts are statements that lead to the comprehension of a major premise, providing a link between a major premise and the specific objectives of a learning unit. <P>There are many concepts you might come up with according to your needs, but here are some examples, and these would have levels of development for each major premise. <P>Since a concept is a dynamic and continuously changing mental system, a progression- from experiencing to discovering to knowing to understanding to applying, these concepts would provide you with an increasing challenge for the developing mind, body and spirit of maturing students and they would be:<P>Experiencing, Discovering, Knowing, Understanding, Applying. Each level of each course you teach, has different scopes of each of these activities, and by thinking what aspects cover the EDKUA in each of your ballet I, II,III, or Jazz I,II, III, and so on, can give you a very clear map of the sequential and progressive development in each area.<P><BR>********************************************************<P><I>Please see the following threads for the next sections of rabbit's post:</I><BR> <A HREF="http://www.criticaldance.com/ubb/Forum7/HTML/000193.html" TARGET=_blank><B>Syllabus Outline: Concepts</B></A> <BR> <A HREF="http://www.criticaldance.com/ubb/Forum7/HTML/000194.html" TARGET=_blank><B>Curriculum: Affective Aspects</B></A> <p>[This message has been edited by grace (edited October 24, 2000).]

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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2000 6:05 pm 
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what a generous gift on our 1st birthday, rabbit! Image<P>thank you!<P><B>rabbit has been invited to become a moderator for criticaldance</B> - and i'm sure you can all see why! she has so much good advice to offer... <P>we DO hope you will join us, rabbit - please let us know!?

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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 4:22 am 
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rabbits reply was more than generous.THANK YOU1<BR>i have decided to work more in depth on this project as i realized this is a good teaching( as well as learning ) tool for me.<BR>RE GRACE'S QUESTION,presently i teach<BR>jazz, style wise it is a mix of matt mattox,luigi,michael ownens tecnique<BR>ages 7thru adult<BR>tap ages 8-11<BR>i am the sub for beg ballet 8-12 and adult beg ballet and i choreograph 2 times a year<BR>for a teen ( 12-17) modern company as well as<BR>guest teach for them about 6 times a year.<BR>niether studio i work with follows a structured ballet exam program. My teacher<BR>growing up used the RAD method but when i ventured to the big city i went to the<BR>cechetti school.<P><BR>


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 4:37 am 
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also to basheva, the quote re making visable<BR>on paper what your mind knows, is so true.<BR>i also find that when i have the time to write down the combo i will be using, the<BR>exercise of sorting it out and connecting the thought on paper always seems to make<BR>it much eaiser for me ,and i find i'm much clearer in my directions when teaching


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 5:26 am 
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so, j, which of these genres or levels will your syllabus be written for, on this occasion?<P>also, rabbit, i am going to split your marvellous paper up into several threads, (interconnected by links), as soon as i get time. i feel that all of it will get better attention, if delivered in smaller doses. trusting that is OK with you.... Image

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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 6:17 am 
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i am starting w/jazz tech as i teach 7 classes, age range varies, plus one adult class<BR>next, they were generous in offering a time<BR>slot to me to introduce the modern choreogrpahy for teens to see if it would generate some interest so i will present an<BR>outline for that,soon!<BR>finally and most difficult for me will be basic ballet technique, especially for beg adults.<BR>(my biggest fault i think is i tend to<BR>get to complicated because i think they are<BR>getting bored, and i know this is a common<BR>mistake when teaching beginners)<P><BR>


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 7:08 am 
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J - about beginners getting bored - and then you feel like you have to get complicated............. You might try it another way - by changing the music to keep their interest - and/or giving them new images to think about while they are dancing. It helps me.


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 7:13 am 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>finally and most difficult for me will be basic ballet technique, especially for beg adults.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>j - might i suggest that you start a new thread for this, please? i think that several people here would love to talk about it with you (including me) - we'll try very hard NOT to do your work for you, though, OK? promise! Image<P>about the jazz (feel free to do the same - but i cannot help there) however, you have written 'jazz tech' - does that mean something specific that i don't know about? thanks for clarification...

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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2000 7:19 am 
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sorry, jazz technique, i was being lazy


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 Post subject: Re: creating syllabus
PostPosted: Wed Oct 25, 2000 4:11 am 
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ah! thanks. thought it might be something new! Image

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