HOW DOES IT WORK?
Our Letter to Teachers (and Future Teachers)
Here we are, an organisation, 10+ year down the track, and we have had some spectacular results with teacher achievements, but we have also learnt some things ourselves. i.e. how to be supportive to teachers and how to best help them become truly excellent and reach their full potential.
We have dancers and teachers of many different levels applying to teach using Living Dance International curricula. Though these teachers have different aspirations, they have this in common: They all want to do the very best for their students physically, emotionally, artistically and spiritually – i.e. they want a make a difference in their students’ life – for good. [Not just good with technique]
Who can teach?
Q. By what criteria are teachers accepted into Living Dance International?
A. As we believe teachers are role models or even an unofficial mentor to students, we assess character suitability as well as the level of their dance training and experience. We recognise prior learning and experience.
For teachers already involved in dance ministry, there is automatic acceptance, but the Teacher Application is the way we get to know our teachers. Our values are described here and our teachers are passionate about these.
Q. Can I have an in depth look at curriculum before I decide?
A. Yes our 4 curriculums: Pre Dance; Junior Ballet; Senior Ballet; and Jazz & Contemporary. There are many grades in each curriculum. These are described in detail under 'Curriculums' in the top menu.
Q. Can I view feedback from teachers who use Living Dance curriculums, even parents of those schools?
A. Yes see Testimonials.
How do I get started?
Become an Undergraduate Teacher and Start Teaching!
1. Fill in the Application and Agreement Form.
2. On receiving an acceptance letter, purchase teaching materials and attend an LDI Seminar [or do online when available.]
N.B. Undergraduate status is effective for 2 years. If a teacher has not moved to graduate status in this time, the teacher needs to attend another LDI seminar or do a Professional Development unit. This will grant 2 more years of undergraduate status. During this time undergraduate teachers may enter their students for examinations.
Tell me about Teachers' Qualifying Seminars
Q. What happens at a Teachers Qualifying Seminar?
A. At the seminars we go through every exercise. Technical concepts and the postural focus for each grade are introduced in the optimum order. The life challenges and ‘life lessons’ children and young people face are expressed in their dance mimes. Teachers are shown these. Teachers and students alike love the mimes as they are fun and they are expressed in situations a child or young person would be familiar with.
The Junior Ballet curriculum is the watershed of all good dance technique, whether a teacher continues on to Jazz & Contemporary or the Senior Ballet levels.
All technique hinges from an understanding of correct postural alignment which is introduced in great depth in the Junior Ballet seminars. Living Dance’s classical ballet training, which makes us distinct from other methods of training, trains dancers to work from the ‘centre-line’ of the body. There is an emphasis to teach this, even at quite a young age. This way students do not have to 'unlearn' postural faults later on in their training. See Technique. This also helps avoid some common injuries in dance training. There is even an optimal order to induce these concepts into the exercises to get the best outcomes. This is explained in the Teacher Notes in the syllabus manual and at Seminars. Therefore the Junior Ballet Seminar is quite intense. See ‘Curriculums'.
These Seminars are very special time, as teachers meet like-minded teachers. Teachers make new friends and often keep into contact with each other. All come away equipped, inspired and with as much support in the day to day running of a dance school, as we can give.
Teachers raise other topics such as; costuming; choreographic ideas; presentations, parent/teacher relationship, ethics in a dance school: advertising; and sometimes business administration. Many like to contribute their ideas and we all benefit.
What other curriculums are available?
Senior Ballet grades go up to Pre Professional. This is not offered in all seminars as often teachers are just starting with younger students. Teachers can learn individual sections of the Senior Ballet curriculum when they are ready. Some use it as a guide to further their own dance training. Some use Grade 4 and 5 for adults returning to dance after a long break.
Jazz & Contemporary curriculum steers away from sexualize movement which is often seen in our culture.
Pre Dance curriculum is specialized formative dance movement for children 3 to 5 years and is set to Kid’s Praise music. Children tend to want to sing-a-long to it!
All these are described in ‘Curriculums’.
Get Fully Qualified
Become a Graduate Teacher
Study for and pass the Teachers’ Examination [for the appropriate curriculum]. This can be done by DVD. We have some LDI Mentor Teachers to help train teachers for this.
As one of our values is ‘to be ever learning’, teachers then need to participate in a unit of professional development every 2 years or attend another seminar. [At time of writing this is under review].
Become a Master Teacher or Mentor Teacher
LDI is reserving this status for graduate teachers who embody the mission and values of Living Dance International and have a history of successfully passing their knowledge on; in either highly successful student examination results and/or successfully preparing teachers in training Seminars or for Teacher Examinations.
AS WE ARE A GROWING AND DEVELOPING ORGANISATION, OUR BOARD MAY REVIEW THE ABOVE FROM TIME TO TIME. WE KEEP OUR TEACHERS INFORMED BUT DO NOT NECESSARILY CHANGE THE WEBSITE AT EVERY DECISION. There is a lot of detailed information below but above is the up to date information.
How is it that a teacher can qualify in such a short time?
Our acceptance process into Living Dance International ensures a teacher has already had suitable training. Some have had much training but no teaching qualification. Some teachers have a qualification in another system of training. Some teachers are recommended to continue their own training. Some teach only the junior levels until they complete further training themselves. All teachers are mentored and encouraged after an examination session. We feel teachers should always be learning or researching, no matter how skilled they are.
ALSO our very succinct ways of teaching the technical concepts and benchmarks are amazing! They are quite unique! If closely adhered to, a teacher can expect to produce really excellent technique in their students. Read Lisa Ward’s comments and other comments in Testimonials.
Teachers and dancers with great experience and training (even professional dancers) come away wishing they had learnt this in their own training!
What are the costs?
The cost is an investment in your business, your future and your students.
Start up businesses and qualifications usually cost exponentially more than what we offer this training at.
There is a training component and a materials component.
Materials:- Syllabus manual; DVD of each grade or level; Music CD of each grade or level.
Our charges are expected to rise in price to be more in line with other curriculums. Please contact director for current price schedule.
How many curriculums would I need to get started? I don’t want to be swamped with too much information. I am just starting with younger levels?
Often teachers start by learning the Curriculum most useful to them to get started but our Junior Ballet curriculum has the foundations of all dance training and has five years of curriculums. This is always a good place to start. Others teachers, who come a long way to a Seminar, learn every curriculum they are able to teach and which is offered. This can take an intensive 7 days if the Senior Ballet curriculum is offered and they have that level of training themselves.
Can I teach curriculum before gaining qualification?
Yes! Due to great distances, teachers accepted into Living Dance International can now purchase these materials and get started prior to attending a Teachers Qualifying Seminar. These teachers are required to attend the next seminar practicable to get to. The qualification is only received after attendance of a seminar. We endevour to hold seminars each year now in Australia, Europe, the US, and South Africa and other places as needed.
Can my assistant teacher qualify too?
More than one teacher can attend from any one dance school. Parents (and teachers) often like to know that the assistant teacher has had teacher training too - so that the assistant is on the ‘same page’ as the teacher. Each teacher from the school that has the materials is charged at the lesser amount $120 AUD (at 2016 prices). This gives them the qualification but they do not own the materials.
Can I copy materials for my other teachers?
Q. What copying of materials is allowed as other teachers in my school will need materials too?
A. The materials can be copied within the one school. It is good to keep materials supplied undamaged as ‘back-up’ as there is a cost to re-issue teachers with replacement materials. Teachers can transfer music to the technology of their choice.
NB. It is against our terms and conditions to copy materials for other dance schools. Our teachers honour this requirement. These materials have had huge set up costs and when each school purchases their own materials it is how Living Dance is reimbursed for its outlay. It also keeps us at Living Dance viable to enables us to travel to you!
What if a teacher leaves my school and has a copy of the materials?
We require the principal of school have an agreement document with all teachers that are supplied with Living Dance International materials – stating that all copies of Living Dance materials will be returned to them prior to their leaving the school. Can we check up on this? It would be exceedingly difficult to but we attract teacher who honour our agreements. We trust our teachers. We work for the mutual good of each other. That’s the nature of Living Dance International.
The departing teacher still holds the qualification with Living Dance International. If the teacher starts their own dance school in another location, she/he will need to purchase materials for their own school. (We trust a teacher will not set up in opposition to previous school as that would be against Living Dance’s ethos of working for the mutual good of each other.)
The Seminar was intense. How can I remember all?
"I have attended a seminar but it was so intense I feel I missed some aspects and now that I am teaching I have more questions to ask? Plus I loved the seminar!"
– These are comments we get!
Review the Teacher notes in the Syllabus manual and any notes you made at seminar.
We recommended teachers attend another seminar as a Refresher Course every 2 or 3 years. After 4 years it is compulsory to renew qualification 4 more years. Refresher seminars are good value - just 20% of training component.
Our question to you!
We are very thankful when a teacher can help us find a venue for a seminar and also helping us with optimum dates and a place to stay. Teachers have more knowledge of their location and know how vacation dates and public holidays will impact. The venue doesn’t need to be a dance studio – just a room and overhead projector (or bring in a TV that plays DVDs.) This really helps so we don’t have to cart heavy equipment on flights! Please let us know if you can help in this way.
I hope this information helps. Please get in contact with us if we can be of any further help or clarification.
Passport name: Clare Baudistel
Honour God • Respect each other • Dance for joy
Founding Director: Living Dance International (dance curriculums • teacher training • examinations)
Co-ordinator: ICDF Network for Dance Teachers (International Christian Dance Fellowships)
Invited to be member of UNESCO International Dance Council, Paris
PO Box 1600 Toowoomba
QLD Australia 4350
PH: +61(0) 428130188
Bank: nab a/c name: Living Dance Trust
BSB: 084961 A/C: 163369734
International payments: PayPal OR SWIFT CODE/IBAN: NATA AU 3304 B