Listening week after week to the judges' critique, I realize that it is the dancers' fluidity of movements, creativity, emotions, their connection with both their partner and audience, the knowledge and ability to perform technically in addition to knowing how to lead or follow is what keeps me glued to the performances. Dancing is a beautiful art. just as teaching is.
For co- teachers to be effective, we must learn to dance with one another. We must connect, be flexible, creative, lead, and follow. While I love to watch dancing, I am not a dancer, and it appears that my co-teacher and I are not good dancing partners either, YET.
will take practice. We have to build a relationship of trust and honesty, so there is a genuine connection. We have to get to know each others teaching styles, so our teaching can be fluid. We have to be open-minded and willing to learn from each others' years of experiences, and strengths in teaching so our teaching complements each other. During a lesson we need to learn and feel each others moves. We need to have a connection with one another and anticipate each others movements. When one leads a lesson the other needs to sense the direction the lesson is taking and follow. As any good performers we need to reflect and refine our dance moves.
I naively hoped and thought our dance would be a piece of art from the beginning and we would fall right into step together. I was quickly brought back to reality. Co-teaching, just as dancing, takes hours, years, months, even years of practice. It will be a challenge. We can plan, and create the perfect lesson, but the challenge is that practicing our teaching is actually a live performance every time. When we fail it is in
front of our audience, our students, and we must quickly get back on track and
continue the dance of teaching. It can be frustrating, but we can't let the
audience sense it. We put a smile on our faces and continue the dance. I believe
it is a challenge worth pursuing because in my opinion co-teaching is the best
teaching practice to reach the diverse needs of all learners.
I am optimistic and determined that we WILL be successful partners because we have passion for teaching, and a dedication to children. We plan, we talk, we read and we are eager to continue our adventure of learning to dance.