I was inspired to write this post when I was teaching a few weeks back….. I was teaching a dance class for Tweens and Teens, every week we start the class discussing what we did at the weekend.
I love to start the class this way as it gives everyone a fair opportunity to talk and also lets me get to know my students. They sometimes mention its their birthday coming up (so i make sure i write it down to remind myself to wish them happy birthday) they might have a ill relative or friend which could explain their mood or give me notification to go a little easier on them…… VERY rarely do I find they don’t wish to contribute.
This week was slightly different, as soon as the girls entered the class I knew something was up. I asked a simple question ‘Hello girls are you ok?’ they mumbled under there breath. I was worried as normally I am greeted with hugs, smiles, and excitement. I sat them down……. we discussed or I should say they discussed how stressful and horrible they were finding school with constant reminders from their teachers ‘this will be in your exam next week’ ‘you must revise this ’ ‘you need to work towards this grade’ .
This really effected me as i could see how distressed and exhausted they were and I wanted to do something to help and support them without getting to involved….. at the end of the day I am a dance teacher and not a councillor.
I decided to give them all a envelope with their name on, at the end of class every week for the 10 week term they would each be given someones envelope with a piece of paper and they would write anonymously a positive statement ‘you have beautiful turns in the centre ’ ‘you made me laugh so much today in class’ …. when I told them this their faces lit up.
I continue to improve my teaching and make my classes as personalised as I can to my students needs.
This brings me on too……..TWEEN & TEEN yoga When at school we don’t get taught how to relax, how to clear our mind from constant thoughts, we don’t get given ‘’time to ourselves’. We have a structured day from start to finish at school and even after school with so many after school clubs on offer. I am trying to share with all how important it is to take time for ourselves to relax, bond with friends/family through guided relaxation/imagery, yoga acro, partner work, breathing exercises and stretches to help relieve tension. I believe yoga/meditation should be structured into everyday school like.
Even 3 minutes a day can really help. You just have to know how to do it......