This is Argyn's blog. I comment on topics of my interests such as software, math, finance, and music. Also, I write about local events in Northern Virginia, USA and all things related to Kazakhstan

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

When teaching a group, who to focus on: those who are fast or slow?

It's probably a dilemma for any instructor: whether to spend more time with those who don't get it, or those who get it quickly? Frankly, I have no answer to this question.

I'm thinking about it now after today's Tango bootcamp class. It's taught by Todd Borzych, who owns DanceSportEndurance company. The program seemed to be very interesting:


Sunday 7 June 3 pm-530 pm- tango basics- Open Embrace, walking forward, side, backwards, molinete, and crusada

630-8 Forward and backwards crossing steps (ochos)

Monday 8 June 9 pm- 1030 pm - Review of Sunday, applications, Turning Left and Right

Tuesday 9 June 830 pm- 1030 pm- Review, Sacadas; the Music of Tango

Wednesday 10 June 730 pm- 1030 pm- Beginner I section ends/Beginner II section begins with overlapping classes, Review of Beginner I classes, Boleos, Mini-Milonga

Thursday 11 June 9 pm -1030 pm- Review turns and sacadas, intro to Close Embrace Tango- walking

Fri 12 June 730 pm -10 pm- Review of Boleos, Close Embrace Tango II- Turns in Close embrace

Sat 13 June 4 pm- 7 pm- Review of full week; applications in Cross-Waltz; Mini-Milonga

It started on the righ foot, on Sunday there was all basic steps but several of them at once. I learned a lot it was going at good pace, although molinete was skipped. Then came Monday. It was all review and only one more turn. I think it started to slow down at this point. Tuesday was all review and just at the very end, maybe 20 minutes before the bell, we got one more step. Today was the a long lesson. I anticipated it would pick a pace, and was looking forward for it. It turned out to be the most frustrating day of all. Out of 3 hours of class, there was first 20 minutes of NOTHING, 15 minutes of lecture, and everything else was repetition of all previous steps over, and over and over.... at the end it just gets you tired. The instructor then figures there's only 15 minutes left to the end and decides to throw in a new step. We're way behind the schedule, we didn't even start sacada and boleo yet! So, Todd pick the simples of all sacadas, not the one he was teaching in other classes. I see only one reason why he picked this one: no time to learn more difficult ones.

At the end of the class he announces that tomorrow would be REVIEW AGAIN. WTF?! I heard many people complaining for this endless repetition, but apparently nobody told Todd about it. So, I told him after the class. He didn't seem to agree with me. Well, I never complain during his complementary dance classes in the gym, because I feel like it's free. Although it's not free, I'm paying gym fees. Still.

This time I'm paying for the bootcamp. I feel that there's a bunch of campers who are slow, but they don't feel like practicing after classes. Instead, they think it's Ok to grab all instructor's attention to themselves, and keep doing the same damned step million times until everybody else throws up. It's certainly unfair to me.

I was contemplating to withdraw from the second half, but decided to stay and see what happens now. Maybe the class would pick a pace now. This was a very frustrating day. Basically, I learned nothing today.

No comments: