strathspey Archive: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Previous thread: briefing and "recap"
Next thread: stampede vs. genteel reordering

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44502 · ParadiseMO · 6 Mar 2006 02:44:24 · Top

In response to Susi Mayr question about the difference between briefing a
dance and recapping a dance: Briefing a dance would be the emcee giving
instructions as you would find them in a dance book: "On bars 1 - 8, first and
second couples dance rights and lefts. On bars 9 -16, first couple dances down
the middle and up to second place, with second couple stepping up on bars 11
and 12."

Recapping a dance would just give little jogs to the memory: "Rights and
lefts followed by down the middle and up".

DOUG SCHNEIDER
Highland Mist Scottish Country Dancers
St. Louis Missouri/Illinois USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44508 · redrose_solutions · 6 Mar 2006 11:07:49 · Top

Thanks for the explanation. It makes me wonder, however, why you feel the
need to have both breifing and recap. I would consider a recap sufficient
at a social event/ball, especially if the programme is published in advance
of the event itself. As Jim Healy says, why waste valuable dancing time?

Susi

>-- Original Message --
>From: ParadiseMO@aol.com
>Date: Sun, 5 Mar 2006 20:44:24 EST
>To: strathspey@strathspey.org
>Subject: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance
>Reply-To: SCD news and discussion <strathspey@strathspey.org>
>
>
>In response to Susi Mayr question about the difference between briefing
a
>
>dance and recapping a dance: Briefing a dance would be the emcee giving

>
>instructions as you would find them in a dance book: "On bars 1 - 8, first
>and
>second couples dance rights and lefts. On bars 9 -16, first couple dances
> down
>the middle and up to second place, with second couple stepping up on bars
> 11
>and 12."
>
>Recapping a dance would just give little jogs to the memory: "Rights and
>
>lefts followed by down the middle and up".
>
>DOUG SCHNEIDER
>Highland Mist Scottish Country Dancers
>St. Louis Missouri/Illinois USA

___________________________________________________________

Tiscali Broadband from 14.99 with free setup!
http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44526 · 0AM7L@SIA · 7 Mar 2006 17:49:35 · Top

>The answer is: Because presumably not everyone is local thus hasn't had the
luxury of practicing those dances exclusively for weeks ahead of time. If
Branches want non-locals to attend events, they must take them into
consideration. If they don't want to 'waste valuable time' briefing or walking
dances for the benefit of non-locals, then they shouldn't promote the event via
flyers mailed to other branches, on their websites, handouts on tables at other
balls, etc. You can't have it both ways: You either earn your Branch some
income off out-of-towners--in which case you must consider them--or you don't.

Margaret Sarna
Michigan

Thanks for the explanation. It makes me wonder, however, why you feel the
> need to have both breifing and recap. I would consider a recap sufficient
> at a social event/ball, especially if the programme is published in advance
> of the event itself. As Jim Healy says, why waste valuable dancing time?
>
> Susi
>
>

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44527 · SMiskoe · 7 Mar 2006 18:21:48 · Top

There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of about
4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by heart. Not
possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This is why we need
briefings and recaps.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44529 · 0AM7L@SIA · 7 Mar 2006 18:56:21 · Top

>Thankyouthankyouthankyou. Our sentiments exactly.

Margaret

There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of
about 4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by
heart. Not possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This
is why we need briefings and recaps.
> Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44531 · mlamontbrown · 7 Mar 2006 19:17:03 · Top

While I have no objection to a brief re-cap, I really cannot see the justification
for anything more. Presumably it is possible to get hold of the programme, and the
instructions, before going to the dance - what is wrong in putting in a little
homework, or even learning the dances while travelling to the dance?

How many teachers and MCs have given in to a request to walk a dance, and thought
"that was a complete waste of time" as people still go wrong? (give right hand
instead of left, cast up instead of down, etc.)

Yes the out-of-towners need to be looked after, but if that's because there are a lot
of home-grown dances on the programme then perhaps that is the fault of the programme
compiler.
Making everyone stand through a detailed description of a dance they already know is
as bad as making people dance an unknown dance without any help.

Malcolm

Malcolm L Brown
York
> -----Original Message-----
> From: strathspey-bounces-mlamontbrown=btopenworld.com@strathspey.org
> [mailto:strathspey-bounces-mlamontbrown=btopenworld.com@strathspey.org] On Behalf
Of
> SMiskoe@aol.com
> Sent: 07 March 2006 17:22
> To: strathspey@strathspey.org
> Subject: Re: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance
>
> There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of about
> 4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by heart. Not
> possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This is why we need
> briefings and recaps.
> Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44537 · redrose_solutions · 7 Mar 2006 21:44:37 · Top

I agree with Malcom that a succint re-cap is fine (I'm not arguing in favour
of no recaps at all - at the moment).

A more detailed briefing would be OK if a dance is new, perhaps written for
a special occasion, and is being taught to everyone in the room for the first
time (this happened with Napier's Index at the Sydney Branch 50th Anniversary
Ball a few years ago). Or perhaps for a very "local" dance when the organising
Branch or group is aware of a large number of out-of-towners wanting to join
in.

I would certainly want to know the programme and ideally have instructions
or source references for any unusual or local dances in advance. I would
also be prepared to put some effort into learning some, though not necessarily
all, of the dances unknown to me, and also to sit out anything I didn't know
or didn't feel confident about.

However, I fail to see why one would need both a briefing and a recap of
the same dance, one more or less immediately after the other, all the way
through an evening's programme. Perhaps this is a reflection of an underlying
cultural /educational difference between the UK/Europe and North America?

Susi

Susi Mayr
Vienna, Austria
susi@redrose.co.at

>-- Original Message --
>From: "mlamontbrown" <mlamontbrown@btopenworld.com>
>To: "'SCD news and discussion'" <strathspey@strathspey.org>
>Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2006 18:17:03 -0000
>Subject: RE: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance
>Reply-To: SCD news and discussion <strathspey@strathspey.org>
>
>
>While I have no objection to a brief re-cap, I really cannot see the justification
>for anything more. Presumably it is possible to get hold of the programme,
>and the
>instructions, before going to the dance - what is wrong in putting in a
little
>homework, or even learning the dances while travelling to the dance?
>
>How many teachers and MCs have given in to a request to walk a dance, and
>thought
>"that was a complete waste of time" as people still go wrong? (give right
>hand
>instead of left, cast up instead of down, etc.)
>
>Yes the out-of-towners need to be looked after, but if that's because there
>are a lot
>of home-grown dances on the programme then perhaps that is the fault of
the
>programme
>compiler.
>Making everyone stand through a detailed description of a dance they already
>know is
>as bad as making people dance an unknown dance without any help.
>
>Malcolm
>
>Malcolm L Brown
>York
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: strathspey-bounces-mlamontbrown=btopenworld.com@strathspey.org
>> [mailto:strathspey-bounces-mlamontbrown=btopenworld.com@strathspey.org]
>On Behalf
>Of
>> SMiskoe@aol.com
>> Sent: 07 March 2006 17:22
>> To: strathspey@strathspey.org
>> Subject: Re: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance
>>
>> There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of
> about
>> 4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by heart.
> Not
>> possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This is why
we
>need
>> briefings and recaps.
>> Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA
>
>

___________________________________________________________

Tiscali Broadband from 14.99 with free setup!
http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44538 · Alasdair Graham · 7 Mar 2006 22:36:14 · Top

Summer dancing in Alva (near Stirling, Scotland) is held for 12 weeks during
each summer with a different programme each week and 20 dances on the
programme. There are no recaps.
Similarly the twice monthly Castle Club Dances in Stirling during the winter
months have no recaps.

In both cases a booklet is issued in advance containing the names of the
dances, and source for each, for every evening's dancing.
These venues are generally full (nine sets or more in the smaller winter
venue) and the dancers attending are able to complete the dances without any
problem. What you find is the more confident dancers are usually in the top
sets with the less confident towards the bottom of the rows.
At these venues dancers form up immediately after the preceding dance.

At dances in the Helensburgh, Glasgow and Ayr Branch areas a brief recap is
given for each dance.
Dancers do not form sets before the dance is called at these events, as a
general rule. However, again the more confident dancers form up nearer the
top of the rows and therefore the bands will see the same people most of the
time.

I have noticed one or two sets which prefer to dance within their own group,
one set comprises 'birlers' and another a 'self help' group who manage
better when dancing together. The vast majority dance with different
partners each dance.

There is a saying here "he who pays the piper calls the tune" and if bands
are accepting money to play at venues where they do not like the customs
then perhaps they should refuse the bookings.

Alasdair Graham
Dumbarton, Scotland.

For those who indulge in pedantic corrections see
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pedantic

----- Original Message -----
From: "Susi Mayr" <redrose_solutions@tiscali.co.uk>

I agree with Malcom that a succint re-cap is fine (I'm not arguing in favour
of no recaps at all - at the moment).

However, I fail to see why one would need both a briefing and a recap of
the same dance, one more or less immediately after the other, all the way
through an evening's programme. Perhaps this is a reflection of an
underlying
cultural /educational difference between the UK/Europe and North America?

Susi

Susi Mayr
Vienna, Austria
susi@redrose.co.at

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44539 · SMiskoe · 7 Mar 2006 23:11:07 · Top

So, I am a tourist with 15 years' dance experience. I arrive in a town, ask
at the desk where I can find dancing, am told of a dance and rush off after
dinner. It won't be a very good experience if there is no briefing because I
have been expected to look at the program in advance, or purchase a crib
book in advance.
And I will be a tourist hunting for some dancing in June.
I also remember an evening in Hopetoun House, one of my first experiences of
a Scottish evening (but I had lots of experience dancing). I was 4th couple
for Kingussie Flower. I had a nodding acquaintance with the dance and I
felt that as 4th woman, with an experienced partner, I would be ok. I remember
everyone in the set reading their cribs, almost continuously, and not one
couple was able to complete the dance without a mistake.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44541 · Anselm Lingnau · 7 Mar 2006 23:22:39 · Top

Malcolm Brown wrote:

> While I have no objection to a brief re-cap, I really cannot see the
> justification for anything more. Presumably it is possible to get hold of
> the programme, and the instructions, before going to the dance - what is
> wrong in putting in a little homework, or even learning the dances while
> travelling to the dance?

I'm absolutely on Malcolm's side here. I'd also say that if the dances on a
program require extensive explanations and walk-throughs then perhaps they
should not have been on the program to start with.

The other thing is that for a re-cap to be worth the time it needs to be
helpful. I have had occasion to listen to many re-caps that were a complete
and utter waste of breath simply because they left everyone in more of a
muddle than before. If it is all right to require dancers to do their
homework in advance, this must apply even more so to those who are supposed
to give the re-caps -- yet many re-cappers either appear to be seeing the
dance description in question for the first time in their lives when they're
up on the stage to give the re-cap, or else seem to harbour the delusion that
the full original dance description from the book, read out verbatim, forms a
suitable re-cap for that dance (to name but two phenomena commonly
encountered).

On a different tack: I may have said this before, but the SCD group in Münster
(in Westphalia) operates an interesting system at their annual ball:
Obviously one cannot ask whether walk-throughs are desired on a
dance-by-dance basis, as there will be people who will absolutely insist on
walking through the »Linton Ploughman«. So at the entrance everyone is given
a number of little sticky dots (like 3), which they can then put beside the
dances on a huge copy of the ball programme (stuck on a nearby wall) that
they are most desperate to walk through. The top few dances (like 3) with
most dots nearby are the ones that will be walked through.

Anselm
--
Anselm Lingnau, Frankfurt, Germany ..................... anselm@strathspey.org
Never believe anything until it's officially denied. -- Margaret Atwood

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44595 · 0AM7L@SIA · 9 Mar 2006 03:13:45 · Top

>Thankyouthankyouthankyou. Our sentiments exactly.

Margaret Sarna
Michigan

There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of
about 4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by
heart. Not possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This
is why we need briefings and recaps.
> Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44599 · Pia Walker · 9 Mar 2006 10:21:08 · Top

And if we are to bring in much younger people, who presumably work during
the week and therefore do not have the time or the inclination to memorize
said dances, then briefing and recaps are necessary too.

Here a lot of dances are on Fridays and I certainly can not be bothered
going to dances where I have to think after a week which start at 8 and goes
on until sometimes 6 or 7 o'clock every day.

Pia

-----Original Message-----
From: strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org]On Behalf Of Don
& Margaret Sarna
Sent: 09 March 2006 02:14
To: Strathspey items
Subject: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

>Thankyouthankyouthankyou. Our sentiments exactly.

Margaret Sarna
Michigan

There are 6+ dance parties all within driving distance in the space of
about 4 months. 16 dances per party, that's 96 dances to be learned by
heart. Not possible. Perhaps there are some repeats but not many. This
is why we need briefings and recaps.
> Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH USA

--
No virus found in this incoming message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 - Release Date: 03/03/2006

--
No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 - Release Date: 03/03/2006

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44600 · Christina France · 9 Mar 2006 10:50:44 · Top

Pia and All,
I agree a recap is very welcomed after a weeks hard work and all you
want to do is relax.
Christina

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44528 · Andrew Buxton · 7 Mar 2006 18:26:49 · Top

Here in Sussex, there is a dance happening somewhere almost every Saturday. We can't possibly practise in class every dance on every programme even once (despite quite a lot of overlap between programmes) and someone wanting to go to one of those may well be unable to attend the particular class when it's practised. So I don't think it's fair to expect that people going to events will be fully confident of every dance.

We've discussed the difficulty for visitors of getting partners (and a place in a set) for each dance. If you have to check Pilling or a printed briefing in the gap between dances there's even less chance of getting in. If you know there's going to be a briefing you can have more confidence in asking someone.

Andrew Buxton
Brighton, UK

Don & Margaret Sarna <dssarna@sprintmail.com> wrote:
>The answer is: Because presumably not everyone is local thus hasn't had the
luxury of practicing those dances exclusively for weeks ahead of time. If
Branches want non-locals to attend events, they must take them into
consideration.

---------------------------------
To help you stay safe and secure online, we've developed the all new Yahoo! Security Centre.

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44561 · Ian Brockbank · 8 Mar 2006 11:17:19 · Top

Andrew Buxton wrote:

> Here in Sussex, there is a dance happening somewhere almost
> every Saturday. We can't possibly practise in class every
> dance on every programme even once (despite quite a lot of
> overlap between programmes) and someone wanting to go to one
> of those may well be unable to attend the particular class
> when it's practised. So I don't think it's fair to expect
> that people going to events will be fully confident of every dance.
>
> We've discussed the difficulty for visitors of getting
> partners (and a place in a set) for each dance. If you have
> to check Pilling or a printed briefing in the gap between
> dances there's even less chance of getting in. If you know
> there's going to be a briefing you can have more confidence
> in asking someone.

That's an argument for a recap. It's not an argument for reading
out the full text of the instructions. If they can't get it from
a brief recap, they won't get it from the full text.

I don't know if we're arguing different things here. The original
posting had the instructions given twice before the dance started,
and the subsequent explanation implied the first set of instructions
was a full teach of the dance. To me that's overkill. It's too
much to take in all at once, and it won't stop me going wrong. A
quick recap should be enough for people to go "oh yes". If they
need more then I really doubt that any amount of talking will do,
and they'll have to rely on the rest of the set. If instructions
can be sent out in advance, that would allow people to do some
swotting (if the information goes in that way for them).

Of course there may be one or two more complicated or less well
known dances on the programme which do merit a bit more. But these
should be the exception. (If they're the rule, then the group needs
to rethink its programmes...)

Ian Brockbank
Edinburgh, Scotland
ian@scottishdance.net
http://www.scottishdance.net/

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44563 · Anselm Lingnau · 8 Mar 2006 12:18:53 · Top

Ian Brockbank wrote:

> I don't know if we're arguing different things here. The original
> posting had the instructions given twice before the dance started,
> and the subsequent explanation implied the first set of instructions
> was a full teach of the dance. To me that's overkill. It's too
> much to take in all at once, and it won't stop me going wrong.

I also think this is strange.

IMHO, the full written instructions for a dance should never be read aloud --
not in class and definitely not in a social situation. They're much too
tedious for that! Their place is on the teacher's desk when he or she
prepares their lesson, and their purpose is to communicate to the teacher how
the dance is meant to go, so they can figure out how to explain it to the
class -- often preferably by way of demonstration rather than reading out
chapter and verse, and not necessarily from the beginning of the dance
straight through to the end.

If you're a computer person, think of full dance descriptions as assembly
code. They are necessary to communicate to others exactly what is going on,
but they are not usually what one wants to think »in« during the creative
process. When I make up a dance, I usually think in terms of movements of
imaginary people in my head (or squares and circles on a piece of paper),
like »the dancing couple goes down the middle and up and the 2s move up«.
Only when I have arrived at something that appears workable as a dance I try
to translate that to formal SCD-speak, as in »9-16: 1st couple lead down the
middle and up (2nd couple move up on 11-12)«.

Anselm
--
Anselm Lingnau, Frankfurt, Germany ..................... anselm@strathspey.org
In the arithmetic of love, one plus one equals everything, and two minus one
equals nothing. -- Ninon de L'Enclos

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44570 · Chris1Ronald · 8 Mar 2006 16:50:29 · Top

Malcolm Brown wrote:

> While I have no objection to a brief re-cap, I really cannot see the
> justification for anything more. Presumably it is possible to get hold of
> the programme, and the instructions, before going to the dance - what is
> wrong in putting in a little homework, or even learning the dances while
> travelling to the dance?

Anselm (in Germany) and others (in the UK, Austria, Monaco,....) endorsed
this comment, while some comments from the US seem to be going the other way.
Someone said that there could be a cultural difference, related to the way
children are educated.

Maybe. But I wouldn't want the impression to get around that, over this
side of the pond, dancers aren't willing or able to study a briefing booklet, or
look up a dance in Pilling, or google it up on the internet.

When I began dancing SCD in earnest (in New York) I would spend hours before
a dance studying the briefing booklet, using red and white dice to help me
figure out what the instructions meant. (I have five red dice for the women,
and five white dice for the men, so I can cope with any dance up to five
couples.) Plus I could talk to other dancers and discuss any queries I had, and
maybe walk through some tricky bits, plus sometimes there were official
walk-throughs in the afternoon beforehand, plus sometimes the weekend teachers
would teach a dance in class. I need these props less now, but I do always
study the booklet - or look up the dances in the various ways that are open to
all of us.

In short, by the time a ball or dance finally arrives, all I want and all I
expect is a crisp and accurate reminder of how the dance goes. A short
briefing or recap, in other words. (These terms, along with that of
'talk-through' are synonymous to me.)

Frankly, I feel I owe it to my fellow dancers to study the dances as well as
I can before a dance. And I can confirm that there are many dancers on
this side of the Atlantic, including renowned teachers (native American born as
well as UK-born), who lament the trend towards long and repetitive "briefs"
and in fact are quite militant about it. They feel it discourages
self-reliance, and helps perpetuate a vicious circle of dancers not being well prepared
and MCs providing longer and longer "briefs".

By the way, Anselm, that sticky dots idea seems rather neat. I might try it
sometime.

Chris (New York)

Anselm wrote "everyone is given
a number of little sticky dots (like 3), which they can then put beside the
dances on a huge copy of the ball programme (stuck on a nearby wall) that
they are most desperate to walk through. The top few dances (like 3) with
most dots nearby are the ones that will be walked through."

Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

Message 44571 · Patricia Ruggiero · 8 Mar 2006 17:05:27 · Top

Chris wrote:

> In short, by the time a ball or dance finally arrives, all I
> want and all I
> expect is a crisp and accurate reminder of how the dance
> goes. A short
> briefing or recap, in other words.
>
> Frankly, I feel I owe it to my fellow dancers to study the
> dances as well as
> I can before a dance.

Well said, Chris. I'll add that it's my experience that if one doesn't know
a complicated dance before the briefing, one is not likely to learn it from
same; therefore, long and detailed briefings (a contradiction in terms) are
not of benefit to those who don't know the dance, while being an irritant to
those who do.

Pat
Charlottesville, Virginia USA

Rules for teachers

Message 44593 · hways · 9 Mar 2006 01:47:08 · Top

Amid all of the recent clutter, some might have missed this excellent
paragraph from Anselm.
Should be required reading for all teachers and candidates.
Harry Ways

Anselm wrote:

IMHO, the full written instructions for a dance should never be read
aloud --
not in class and definitely not in a social situation. They're much too
tedious for that! Their place is on the teacher's desk when he or she
prepares their lesson, and their purpose is to communicate to the teacher
how
the dance is meant to go, so they can figure out how to explain it to the
class -- often preferably by way of demonstration rather than reading out
chapter and verse, and not necessarily from the beginning of the dance
straight through to the end.

Rules for teachers

Message 44598 · Pia Walker · 9 Mar 2006 10:17:42 · Top

So how do you teach your class to listen and visualise what they are
supposed to do?

A class consist of many people who all learn differently - some needs to see
words, others diagrams, some can remember and some can only learn by hearing
the words. And how do you learn to listen to a brief/recap if you have
never heard one? Which is presumably why so many people stand on the floor
and look adoringly at their .... wee green book/piece of paper instead of
their partner.

The same goes for music - how do you teach people to listen to the music if
they only hear one kind?

Pia

-----Original Message-----
From: strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org]On Behalf Of
Harry W
Sent: 09 March 2006 00:47
To: SCD news and discussion
Subject: Re: Rules for teachers

Amid all of the recent clutter, some might have missed this excellent
paragraph from Anselm.
Should be required reading for all teachers and candidates.
Harry Ways

Anselm wrote:

IMHO, the full written instructions for a dance should never be read
aloud --
not in class and definitely not in a social situation. They're much too
tedious for that! Their place is on the teacher's desk when he or she
prepares their lesson, and their purpose is to communicate to the teacher
how
the dance is meant to go, so they can figure out how to explain it to the
class -- often preferably by way of demonstration rather than reading out
chapter and verse, and not necessarily from the beginning of the dance
straight through to the end.

--
No virus found in this incoming message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 - Release Date: 03/03/2006

--
No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 - Release Date: 03/03/2006

Rules for teachers

Message 44606 · Wendy Grubb · 9 Mar 2006 14:13:17 · Top

I think that what is meant is that as the teacher one
has already perhaps chosen a certain wording so that
it is more clear to the class rather than just reading
out of the book. I know that I sometimes depend too
much on the book rather than already knowing exactly
what to tell the class. Once I really know a dance I
might describe it a little differently in a way that
would be easier to understand for the dancers.
Wendy Grubb

--- Pia <pia@intamail.com> wrote:

> So how do you teach your class to listen and
> visualise what they are
> supposed to do?
>
> A class consist of many people who all learn
> differently - some needs to see
> words, others diagrams, some can remember and some
> can only learn by hearing
> the words. And how do you learn to listen to a
> brief/recap if you have
> never heard one? Which is presumably why so many
> people stand on the floor
> and look adoringly at their .... wee green
> book/piece of paper instead of
> their partner.
>
> The same goes for music - how do you teach people to
> listen to the music if
> they only hear one kind?
>
> Pia
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org
>
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org]On
> Behalf Of
> Harry W
> Sent: 09 March 2006 00:47
> To: SCD news and discussion
> Subject: Re: Rules for teachers
>
>
> Amid all of the recent clutter, some might have
> missed this excellent
> paragraph from Anselm.
> Should be required reading for all teachers and
> candidates.
> Harry Ways
>
> Anselm wrote:
>
> IMHO, the full written instructions for a dance
> should never be read
> aloud --
> not in class and definitely not in a social
> situation. They're much too
> tedious for that! Their place is on the teacher's
> desk when he or she
> prepares their lesson, and their purpose is to
> communicate to the teacher
> how
> the dance is meant to go, so they can figure out how
> to explain it to the
> class -- often preferably by way of demonstration
> rather than reading out
> chapter and verse, and not necessarily from the
> beginning of the dance
> straight through to the end.
>
>
>
> --
> No virus found in this incoming message.
> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
> Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 -
> Release Date: 03/03/2006
>
> --
> No virus found in this outgoing message.
> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
> Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.1.2/274 -
> Release Date: 03/03/2006
>
>

__________________________________________________
Do You Yahoo!?
Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
http://mail.yahoo.com

Rules for teachers

Message 44607 · Pia Walker · 9 Mar 2006 14:27:11 · Top

I know - but where do you learn to understand a book and the way it is
written? We have a specific way of annotating dances in RSCDS - ok - not
always brilliant - but it is there. We have a lot of people who write
dances - sometimes using wording which is understandable to them, I would
say in many cases because of what they have heard but not always seen
written down, but not necessarily so the wording travels well.

Many experienced dancers/teachers forget that lesser mortals may not know
what they mean by - whatever they are saying. Plus the fact that one
teacher although brilliant - may deliver the explanation in such a way that
some people do not understand it. I have teachers whose descriptions I
understand very well, and others who I can't understand - nothing to do with
their teaching, just the way my brain analyse their explanations.

I like to hold the book firmly in my hand - if nothing else then for the
person who will ask 'why do we' and 'can't we do?' and I can say - the
offical line is:.....
It has of course nothing to do with me having a memory like a sieve, of
course :>)

Pia

-----Original Message-----
From: strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org]On Behalf Of
Wendy Grubb
Sent: 09 March 2006 13:13
To: SCD news and discussion
Subject: RE: Rules for teachers

I think that what is meant is that as the teacher one
has already perhaps chosen a certain wording so that
it is more clear to the class rather than just reading
out of the book. I know that I sometimes depend too
much on the book rather than already knowing exactly
what to tell the class. Once I really know a dance I
might describe it a little differently in a way that
would be easier to understand for the dancers.
Wendy Grubb

--
No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.2.1/277 - Release Date: 08/03/2006

Rules for teachers

Message 44608 · Wendy Grubb · 9 Mar 2006 14:48:47 · Top

I usually hold the book in my hand as well since I
have dancers who enjoy finding errors in what I say.
I know what you mean about the difficulty of what was
meant. I usually get members of my group to volunteer
to try various things if I am unsure as well as asking
other teachers who have more experience than I do or
who dance in other areas and maybe even know the
devisor. I personally do better with words than with
pictures so I only use Pillings if I already know the
dance. My sister on the other hand dances with a
group that uses Pillings extensively and she finds it
very difficult to read dances and understand them. It
is good to have both since we have multiple learning
styles in dancers.
Wendy

--- Pia <pia@intamail.com> wrote:

> I know - but where do you learn to understand a book
> and the way it is
> written? We have a specific way of annotating
> dances in RSCDS - ok - not
> always brilliant - but it is there. We have a lot
> of people who write
> dances - sometimes using wording which is
> understandable to them, I would
> say in many cases because of what they have heard
> but not always seen
> written down, but not necessarily so the wording
> travels well.
>
> Many experienced dancers/teachers forget that lesser
> mortals may not know
> what they mean by - whatever they are saying. Plus
> the fact that one
> teacher although brilliant - may deliver the
> explanation in such a way that
> some people do not understand it. I have teachers
> whose descriptions I
> understand very well, and others who I can't
> understand - nothing to do with
> their teaching, just the way my brain analyse their
> explanations.
>
> I like to hold the book firmly in my hand - if
> nothing else then for the
> person who will ask 'why do we' and 'can't we do?'
> and I can say - the
> offical line is:.....
> It has of course nothing to do with me having a
> memory like a sieve, of
> course :>)
>
> Pia
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org
>
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-pia=intamail.com@strathspey.org]On
> Behalf Of
> Wendy Grubb
> Sent: 09 March 2006 13:13
> To: SCD news and discussion
> Subject: RE: Rules for teachers
>
>
> I think that what is meant is that as the teacher
> one
> has already perhaps chosen a certain wording so that
> it is more clear to the class rather than just
> reading
> out of the book. I know that I sometimes depend too
> much on the book rather than already knowing exactly
> what to tell the class. Once I really know a dance
> I
> might describe it a little differently in a way that
> would be easier to understand for the dancers.
> Wendy Grubb
>
> --
> No virus found in this outgoing message.
> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
> Version: 7.1.375 / Virus Database: 268.2.1/277 -
> Release Date: 08/03/2006
>
>

__________________________________________________
Do You Yahoo!?
Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
http://mail.yahoo.com

Rules for teachers

Message 44671 · Anselm Lingnau · 13 Mar 2006 13:37:17 · Top

Pia wrote:

> I know - but where do you learn to understand a book and the way it is
> written? We have a specific way of annotating dances in RSCDS - ok - not
> always brilliant - but it is there. We have a lot of people who write
> dances - sometimes using wording which is understandable to them, I would
> say in many cases because of what they have heard but not always seen
> written down, but not necessarily so the wording travels well.

The thing to remember is that dance descriptions, as printed in dance books,
are designed to be precise (one hopes, anyway) rather than exciting. The
problems faced by the authors of dance descriptions are similar to those that
computer programmers or legislators have to contend with; all these domains
require prose that conveys the exact meaning of highly misunderstandable
concepts, and their output usually results in descriptions that are accurate
but not exactly light bedtime reading to compare with the latest of Dan Brown
or J. K. Rowling.

Like the interpretation of laws, the interpretation of dance descriptions
requires training and experience. This is what a teacher is supposed to
provide -- to take a precisely written dance description and translate it
into whatever concepts their class is most happy with, such as demonstration
or explanation in easier terms (or both). For example, if the dance
description says »bars 25-32: 2nd and 1st couples dance rights and lefts«, as
a teacher I will usually say »top two couples, rights and lefts« (if that is
the case), since in my experience people find it easier to relate to the set
as it is at that particular instance, rather than puzzle out which couple has
moved where in an ongoing shell game. I don't usually mention bar numbers,
and if I do, I use »relative« ones counting from the start of the 8-bar
phrase, such as »2s move up on 3 and 4« while 1st couple are leading down the
middle and up. Move-ups and such I try to relate to other movements taking
place, such as »1s cross right and cast while the 2s move up; 1s cross left
and cast to their left« rather than the more unwieldy »1st couple cross
giving right hands and cast off, then cross left hands and 1st man dances
round 3rd man by the left shoulder while 1st lady does likewise round 2nd
lady (2nd couple move up on bars 3-4)«, which is the way the same movement
might occur in a full dance description. (Incidentally, many of these ideas,
which are by no means original, are mentioned in my »Guide to Briefings«,
available from the Strathspey Server.)

I agree that often it takes several approaches to teach the same subject
matter because people learn stuff in different ways. I also agree that recaps
should be provided at most if not all social functions. However, recaps
should be recaps and not full teaching sessions -- their function is to
remind people how the dance goes. To all those people who complain that they
have no time for swotting for the next social: Learning SCD is about
»learning dancing, not dances«. I've found that being able to do the basic
figures right and to string them together takes one a long way towards
dancing many dances from recaps and watching the first couple do their thing
(or picking up hints from the rest of the set if one happens to be the first
couple). These are all abilities that do not come easy to many people, but
which can be practised. The problems start when people approach each dance as
a new microcosm of choreography that must be learned on its own (preferably
by heart). This task, at 18 dances per evening, quickly becomes daunting, and
it is therefore understandable that dancers clamour for more detailed
explanations at the actual events. Perhaps this phenomenon is to do with the
practice of running a class by teaching dances from the next social programme
through reading the full descriptions from the book, rather than by teaching
*dancing* through a well-chosen selection of dances that builds up systematic
knowledge of formations and transitions? (Note that I didn't mention footwork
at all.)

Anselm
--
Anselm Lingnau, Frankfurt, Germany ..................... anselm@strathspey.org
Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them. -- Albert Einstein

Rules for teachers

Message 44623 · Ron Mackey · 11 Mar 2006 00:23:38 · Top

> I think that what is meant is that as the teacher one
> has already perhaps chosen a certain wording so that
> it is more clear to the class rather than just reading
> out of the book. I know that I sometimes depend too
> much on the book rather than already knowing exactly
> what to tell the class. Once I really know a dance I
> might describe it a little differently in a way that
> would be easier to understand for the dancers.
> Wendy Grubb

Hi, I attend a class where a teacher reads the
first try from the book and has us standing while discussions go on
about what the instructions mean to each dancer involved. It is very
much a timewasting experience and, by committee, often is done
incorrectly in the end!.
Personally, I scan any new dance and copy it to a text file.
This is fairly garbled and needs re-writing/editing. In doing this one
has to go line by line, often retyping the whole 8 bars being
considered. I take the opportunity to insert my own abbreviations
(e.g. RSh,: 1s, 2s, 3s,: Rts & Lts ; R3-4-5 etc.) and change the
wording so that I can grasp the meaning more quickly so that by the
time it is done it is re-written in a compact form and one has a clear
idea of what the deviser intended. Oh, yes - and I always try to find
more then one way of saying things to produce the same result
Tonight I tried to do a couple of old dances out of books 9 & 14
(which I knew well 50 or so years ago) straight from the wee books
and made a right hash of things.
Taught me a lesson, it did! i.e.

Don't take short cuts and be sure you know the dance before you
teach it. It is the least you owe your class.

Rules for teachers

Message 44624 · Phill Jones · 11 Mar 2006 00:46:59 · Top

Hi,
Just a thought for teachers out there that I have heard used by school
teachers... If a member of the class does not learn something you have
taught them it is because you it wrong. In other words, if you go in to
a class without preparing it properly (i.e. without at least two or
three ways of describing/presenting everything) then you as a teacher
will fail to teach the majority of the class. I know how that makes me
feel on the receiving end!


-----Original Message-----
From: strathspey-bounces-phill=squeezypiano.co.uk@strathspey.org
[mailto:strathspey-bounces-phill=squeezypiano.co.uk@strathspey.org] On
Behalf Of Ron Mackey
Sent: 10 March 2006 23:24
To: SCD news and discussion
Subject: RE: Rules for teachers

> I think that what is meant is that as the teacher one has already
> perhaps chosen a certain wording so that it is more clear to the class

> rather than just reading out of the book. I know that I sometimes
> depend too much on the book rather than already knowing exactly what
> to tell the class. Once I really know a dance I might describe it a
> little differently in a way that would be easier to understand for the

> dancers.
> Wendy Grubb

Hi, I attend a class where a teacher reads the
first try from the book and has us standing while discussions go on
about what the instructions mean to each dancer involved. It is very
much a timewasting experience and, by committee, often is done
incorrectly in the end!.
Personally, I scan any new dance and copy it to a text file.
This is fairly garbled and needs re-writing/editing. In doing this one
has to go line by line, often retyping the whole 8 bars being
considered. I take the opportunity to insert my own abbreviations
(e.g. RSh,: 1s, 2s, 3s,: Rts & Lts ; R3-4-5 etc.) and change the
wording so that I can grasp the meaning more quickly so that by the time
it is done it is re-written in a compact form and one has a clear
idea of what the deviser intended. Oh, yes - and I always try to find
more then one way of saying things to produce the same result
Tonight I tried to do a couple of old dances out of books 9 & 14 (which
I knew well 50 or so years ago) straight from the wee books and made a
right hash of things.
Taught me a lesson, it did! i.e.

Don't take short cuts and be sure you know the dance before you teach
it. It is the least you owe your class.

Previous thread: briefing and "recap"
Next thread: stampede vs. genteel reordering
A Django site.