Saturday, September 4, 2010

Teaching and NYCB Workout Certification

One of my projects for the summer has been working towards getting certified to teach The New York City Ballet Workout. I really enjoy teaching and I've been wanting to do more to build up that part of my resume, so this was a great opportunity.

I applied and was accepted last summer to the teacher training program at NYCB, but for financial & timing reasons I wasn't able to participate. This year, thanks to a generous friend, I've been able to start the certification process. Back in August I completed a training weekend at NYCB's gorgeous studios. What an enriching experience! Teachers from literally all over the world (Croatia, Japan...) came for the weekend to learn the format and technical requirements of the dance workout class and tips for improving teaching skills. I learned so much in just two days!

I've been teaching for most of my life, starting when I was very young at my family's dance studio helping demonstrate for the even younger students. I grew up watching my mother and grandmother run a dance school, teaching all ages and levels. I guess through osmosis those skills translated to me a little bit - when I graduated from The Rock School one of my favorite teachers there told me "someday you're going to be a great teacher." At the time I took that as a gigantic insult, haha. All I wanted her to say was that I was "going to be a great dancer," not a teacher. She went on to explain that I "knew so much" and could analyze things, which only now I find value in.

Since then I helped teach primary level students at Ballet Academy East where I got more hands on experience correcting and adjusting young dancers. From there I taught (and choreographed) for a NYC public high school class one semester. Then this summer I began teaching open classes for a new donation-based organization - which has been such fun! I do feel like I have a lot of information to share that has been ingrained in me from my many wonderful teachers. Now with this potential NYCB Workout certification I'll have even more to back me up.

After the training weekend I completed a written exam, and now the last step is the practical exam: teaching a class of my own. I'll be teaching Sunday 9/5 from 2:30-4pm, so if anyone out there is free, please come! :) Free class, what could be better?

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