Social Dancing and Science- Looking at a topic universally and from many perspectives
I recently used social dancing as a major part of my recovery from a Traumatic Brain Injury. Because of the nature of my numerous deficits, I had to specifically learn and examine the act of learning about social dancing in a very particular and broken down sort of way. This class is really a distillation of my experience, using all of the things I know about science, engineering, relationships, behavior modification, learning theory, and lots of other things, recovering my brain.
What this class is:
We are going to use Social Dancing (East Coast Swing) as our touchpoint to introduce a range of topics from Physics, Engineering, Speech Communication, Music, Bio-Mechanics, and probably some others. Words like axis, downbeat, couple, moment, acceleration, Calculus, balance, pivot, vector, Venn diagram, tempo, connection, eye contact, working memory, neuro pathways, and many more will be being talked about as we move through the basics of the dance, and learning to work with a partner.
Why should you consider this class:
This is the kind of class I always wanted to take. So often, the arts and sciences are split as though they are entirely unrelated unless you study them at an exceptionally high level. I don’t think this is actually how we should teach art or science, ultimately the very best thing we can do is show students how all of these things go together. An additional benefit of doing it this way is the de-gendering of the subjects. Showing students how we can apply scientific and mathematical thinking to subjects they may not have thought to apply them to increases creativity, makes new neural networks in the brain, and opens up the possibility for multi-disciplined thinking.
What is the object of this class:
What I want to accomplish with this class is to help change students perspectives on what it is to learn a new skill. They all have individual strengths and weaknesses, and being able to frame experiences and activities through different lenses helps people be more open to trying new things. I want to open their minds to the giant spider web of ways we can apply knowledge to a subject, not just the liner path so often traveled in educational materials.
Why social dance:
I selected social dancing for a number of reasons, not just because I have been immersed in it for the last 18 months. Social Dancing is kinesthetic, so many classes are based around visual or auditory learning, I think it will help the students be more creative by accessing different pathways. Partner dancing presents its own unique set of personal and interpersonal challenges, and given that so many young people communicate more with their phones than in person, partner dancing can help them develop more confidence and connection with real life people.
What will my child learn:
Beyond the basics of the dance, and all of the words and concepts I previously mentioned, your child will also learn these things:
Better eye contact, greater comfort with people in their personal space, more confidence when approaching people, clearer boundaries, and a life long skill.
They will also learn multidisciplinary thinking, and learn to see things from various perspectives. Flexible thinking and looking at things from multiple points of view.
Class is 2 hours once a week for 8 weeks Starting September 7- October 26.
This is a drop off class, so go get lunch, have a cup of coffee, make a Doctors appointment or just breath.
There are no pre-requisites, all levels of dance and all levels of science and math are welcome.
There will be some minor homework, and the students will be asked to practice the dance steps we have learned at least a few times between meetings
Books will be recommended, though I don’t anticipate any required reading.
There will be a Facebook group, or maybe a slack channel or e-mail list, to keep in touch between classes.
All students will be leading and following
Since Social Dancing involves touching other people, there will be a behavior agreement for the students/parents to sign
Price and Location:
$190/ student. Checks can be mailed to Callie Fulmer, LLC PO Box 612 Lovettsville, VA, 20180
10am-12 Thursdays September 7- October 26. This is a drop off class.
Registration closes September 5.
Wish it was a different day/time/location? if you have a group and space I'm happy to work with you. I can even run this as a weekend if you are far away. Email me for information.
A couple of parents have expressed an interest in taking this class. Please feel free.
This class is for you even if:
Your child is a reluctant, or inexperienced dancer
Your child has never shown an interest in science and is really just here for the dancing
This class might not be a good fit if:
Your child has significant personal space issues or really dislikes touching (mostly each others hands, possibly some arms and back)
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