What a busy Spring Term for us with visits in the Midlands, London, Surrey and a first trip to Wales. We had such warm welcomes and enthusiastic feedback from participants and we are enjoying hearing about how you are using and adapting the Write Dance materials.
We were also able to run workshops for the Thurrock Early Years Conference and for pre- schools and childminders in Bexley so it has been a busy and first part of the year.
In February we hosted our own training event in London (we are generally contacted by schools and local authorities who invite us to train for them). The event was very successful and we had a great day and were really impressed that participants had travelled some distance to join us.
Following all the enquiries we are receiving we would like to offer training in the Midlands in September so we will be keeping you posted with that in the next few weeks.
We are also working more with local authorities who wish to put on training for practitioners in their area.
If you do want training in your area for local schools please let us know if you have a contact for training centre/ school so that we can look at putting on training near you.
Nicole is also negotiating to host training in Brighton, early July, before the end of term and will definitely run more training in the Sussex area in the Autumn term.
If you would be interested in attending a Brighton event on a week day (possible dates 3rd or 4th July) this term please email Nicole so that she can assess if it is viable to put one on this term.
Other News !
We do want to share resources and articles with you and we will be updating the website in the next few weeks. We also want to find out more about your interest in ` Write Dance’ and needs from our newsletter. Some of you may be new to `Write Dance’ and are unfamiliar with the resources others are using it regularly.
Today we want to share a link to resources which appears in the Write Dance second edition (4 -8 years). It is a link to the publishers (SAGE) website where there are downloadable copy sheets to accompany the book. Ragnhild (the author) has suggested them for decorative borders, imaginative drawings and a self-assessment activity.
The Sheets can be found at: –
The link above has a ‘copy sheet’ for a ‘self-assessment activity’, which can also be found in Write Dance 2nd edition (2011 p 40 ) Try using the self-assessment before introducing the music and the dancing sessions to the children. Then ask the children to repeat the activity. It is vitally important that children are ab le to track their own progress. This means they try the writing/drawing movements ‘self-assessment’ at the start, when just beginning to learn the Write Dance approach. They then repeat the same self-assessment after six/seven weeks (a school term) and then again after 12-13 weeks (two school terms). Children who are able to chart their own progress will be more motivated to ‘move/draw’ and practise handwriting to achieve a personal fluent style. Adults may be interested to track their progress alongside the children.
The activity involves asking the child to draw a range of marks along guidelines.
1) A line from left to right; 2 ) 5 circles; 3) loops upwards; 4) loops downwards
5) A line of angles; 6) 5 eights and finally a free space for the child to create something of their own or repeat their favourite.
“Ragnhild writes that in her experience, “Children like this kind of test a lot, and they haven’t yet developed a fear of failure,”
Diana and Nicole add, “We are more cautious and we advise adults to ensure that young children do not feel ‘tested’. We suggest you download this attachment as guidance and do not think of it as a test at all”.
We recommend adults should demonstrate the ‘movement-writing’ and give the children each instruction, one at a time. The lined paper is useful but children need not start with A4; it may be more appropriate to start with A3.
Publish your findings
Share the outcomes with us – send us your impressions and we can publish the findings and start a debate.
There will be another newsletter very soon with an update on Brighton training and Autumn training. In the meantime, enjoy the sunshine (when it comes) and of course it is a perfect opportunity to do `Write Dance’ outside… a CD player outside,…. ribbons/ scarves …. water and brushes and chalks and lots of fun. We would love to see any photos or video clips and we can share them on the website.
Best wishes for a great Summer term,
Diana and Nicole