Saturday, 2 March 2013


From blogs and emails with you this week, I am pleased to see I am not alone in having had a rather busy (with the word busy seeming a complete understatement!) week.  But I am pleased to see that the busy has been coupled with reflection on your journeys also.  

I am quite pre-occupied with notions of time, how we manage it on a day to day basis, what it is philosophically, scientifically, in reality, if it is actually anything more than an opportunity for things to happen?  If the latter is the case, I wonder how some periods of time (days, weeks..) seem to offer no opportunities for anything to happen as so much is happening, or is it just that we find ourselves with little time to absorb and reflect on what has happened as we are so busy making things happen?

WE are responsible, I believe, for shaping what we do, the opportunities we allow to arise, those we take and develop, those we choose not to follow.  WE have the ability to affect the world around us and to shape it by our actions, not knowing precisely what effect our actions will have in the future as we can never be in tomorrow today, but having ownership over our actions in the present.  Actively interacting with each day, with the opportunities that time affords, with the people we share that time with I believe is vital in continuing to grow and to learn.  Being open to what each day may bring, to what the class we're with offer in/of themselves, learning from what they are offering how we may best respond in guiding, challenging and supporting them in their learning, and in turn what this time has offered us in terms of opportunities (in reflection) is a key tool to learning and understanding learning and knowledge.

Notions of who we are (module one) and how we interact with the world around us (module two) resulting in what affect our actions/interactions may have on others (module three) is in essence what the MAPP programme is interested in.  Whilst our point of reference is dance, and specifically the teaching of/pedagogical practice of dance, we are only really able to identify and attribute value to impact/interaction/affects by understanding our place within them.

Where do YOU stand within all of this?  Have you been shaped/shaped yourself and your practice through training and experiencing dance as dance alone or through your experiences of you in a far broader picture?


1 comment:

  1. Helen this is extraordinary 'timing' as far as I am concerned... I have literally just emailed you to ask if we can Skype this week to discuss something about my Task 1, and you have really answered what I was going to discuss (but I would still like to chat if possible) as I have found my subject's successes and journey have led me to considering just what you discuss; being masters of our own destiny.

    In response to your summing up, and asking us what has shaped us, it has always been the bigger picture - life - rather than dance alone that has shaped what I do and how I do it. I feel that to train a dancer is to train an individual, who brings to the studio the product of their life to date as material to mould. (To explain, I had a very difficult childhood and I know it has shaped the me of today. I say that my background is the reason that I am who and how I am, but it is not an excuse for who and how I am.)

    I am there, in my opinion, to facilitate the progression of technique, and to encourage the positive promotion of the love of what we do. I also try to enable my students to see the potential that they have, rather than limiting themselves by only acknowledging what is going wrong. As Emerson said - 'we become what we think about all day long.' I have been able to turn my life around in the last 14 months, but have only just realised my part in that. I hope to be able to use this learning to enable others to be positive, and to realise that they can effect change in the same way. It took me a long time, but I am getting there!