Teaching dance

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    Child safe dance practices

    Children have a fundamental right to be safe while involved in dance, sport or associated activities and teachers need to be aware of their legal obligations.

    Booting the tutu: teachers and dance in the classroom

    Ralph Buck (National Institute for Creative Arts and Industries, University of Auckland) focuses on how we might develop sustainable dance education practice in the primary school classroom. He emphasises the importance of changing perceptions about dance in terms of the associations with femininity, ability, performance, mastery of skill and elitism.

    Safe Dance ® practice

    These Safe Dance ® practice guidelines include how to set up a safe learning environment, what makes a practice or performance venue safe, the importance of cater for physical different bodies and abilities, how movements might impact on the body, and simple injury prevention and management strategies.

    Effective dance teaching methods

    A checklist of skills, knowledge, considerations and practices that form the basis of good teaching methodology. Some are generic and apply to good teachers of any discipline, while others are specific to dance and artistic instruction.

    Parents’ code of behaviour

    The code of behaviour for parents is intended to support you to reassure your child that dance is for enjoyment and that they are loved for themselves rather than for their achievements.

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    Dance part of every young person’s education!

    Participating in dance provides creative, healthy and stimulating experiences for young Australians. Dance is now a part of the Australian Curriculm which means every young person will have the opportunity to experience dance. This offers huge potential for developing creativity and innovation across the curriculum.

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    Investigating injuries in Australia’s professional dancers

    Australia is at the forefront of dance injury epidemiology efforts; the Safe Dance Project Report on dance injury prevention and management in the Australian dance profession, known as Safe Dance®, was launched over 25 years ago. It was the first study of its kind conducted in Australia and showed an alarming prevalence of both chronic and acute injuries in Australian dancers. These findings led to a variety of recommendations and initiatives, including a recommendation to repeat the Safe Dance study regularly to evaluate the effect of these initiatives and provide further insight into dancer health and wellbeing.

    Dance in the Australian Curriculum

    With the arts now part of the Australian Curriculum, we continue to promote dance as a key artform in alongside music, visual arts, drama and media arts.

    Supporting the Live Performance Training Package

    After nation-wide research, Innovation and Business Skills Australia concluded that 'there is strong industry and community demand for national qualifications to help lift standards across the profession and set clear national benchmarks which promote consistency while maintaining flexibility'.

    Dance Plan 2012

    Identifies four ambitions for 2012, with a list of achievable objectives. These ambitions reflect the diversity and dynamism of dance in our communities. They require our energy and attention to ensure that dance, as an artform and an enjoyable form of recreation for all, remains at the heart of Australian life.

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    Australian guidelines for teaching dance

    The Australian guidelines for teaching dance outlines codes of ethical and professional behaviour and emphasises the importance of safe dance practice and teaching methodology.

    We designed it to help dance teachers and students by providing minimum standards, and by suggesting ways teachers can maintain or upgrade their teaching skills. Parents can use the Guidelines  to help choose a dancing school or group for their children.

    Ausdance National newsletter

    Published every two months, and themed around an event or popular dance topic, our email newsletter reflects on professional dance practice and shares ways for you to get involved.

    Dance, young people and change

    Dance, Young People and Change brought together young people, parents, educators and others from around the world to share and consider the role of dance in young people’s lives. It provided critical evaluation and reflection on approaches to dance learning, teaching and curriculum for young people and offered opportunities to critique the relevance of dance for young people within education and community contexts.

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    ArtsPeak update October 2017

    The ArtsPeak executive is currently exploring possible restructuring and support for the new privately-funded arts advocacy team formed by the Myer Foundation, the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation and the Keir Foundation’s program called A New Approach. The foundation recently announced that the Australian Academy of the Humanities and Newgate Communications have been engaged to deliver the program, and that the foundation will provide $1.65m to establish the lobby group to ‘defend and promote the benefit of intellectual and creative life’.

    We have also recently attended a meeting with Andrew Leigh (Member for Fenner), the Opposition Assistant Treasurer, and discussed some options for arts advocacy at Shadow Cabinet level. We hope to respond to the ALP’s invitation to have input into a revised Creative Australia policy prior to the next federal election.

    We urge all Ausdance members to re-read the Creative Australia: national cultural policy and send us any suggestions that we might feed into the consultation process.

    Julie Dyson, AM

    Joint Dance Congress 2018: Panpapanpalya

    Joint Dance Congress 2018: Panpapanpalya, Adelaide Australia, 8–13 July 2018
    • When: 8 to 13 July 2018
    • Where: Adelaide, South Australia
    • Registrations: Earlybird registrations are on sale until 1 February 2018.

    Panpapanpalya 2018 will be one of the world’s largest gatherings of dancers, dance educators, and artists of all ages, generating new thoughts and ideas for dance learning and teaching in the 21st century. 

    Panpapanpalya 2018 will be centered on four interwoven themes: dance, gathering, generations, learning.

    These themes, summarised by the Aboriginal Kaurna word Panpapanpalya, honour Australia’s rich Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dance practices, as well as indigenous dance cultures from around the world.

    Babies, young children, school and university students, dance artists, community and cultural workers, parents and carers, as well as educators, will be involved as participants and presenters—coming from diverse backgrounds and countries all over the world.

    The congress will include intercultural dance experiences across generations and new learning through presentations, social interaction and debate.

    For more info, please visit the congress website.  

    Panpapanpalya is the second joint Dance Congress organized by dance and the Child international (daCi) and World Dance Alliance (WDA)

    National Advocates For Arts Education May 2017 update

    by Julie Dyson, Chair

    NAAE is coordinating the publication of a new edition of its highly successful More Than Words Can Say – a View of Literacy Through the Arts, last updated in 2003. This has meant re-engaging with the original authors and commissioning a new Foreword. We’re delighted to announce that this will be written by arts educator Professor Robyn Ewing AM of the University of Sydney, author of the influential research paper The Arts and Australian Education: Realising potential.

    Ausdance Educators Queensland Conference 2017

    Ausdance Educators Queensland (AEQ) is a voluntary group of dance teachers who work across primary, middle and senior secondary schools, from the independent, Catholic and state sectors. Collectively they form a strong support base for Queensland’s teachers of dance in schools. These teachers also represent Queensland’s teachers at national dance education meetings and forums.

    The AEQ hosts workshops and meets to discuss current issues. They want to hear from you about your ideas and needs so join their Facebook group.

    • Dates: Friday 5 May – Saturday 6 May 
    • Location: Queensland Ballet studios at the Thomas Dixon Centre in West End, Brisbane.

    The conference will have professional development opportunities for primary and secondary dance generalists and specialists.

    For conference program and registration, visit Ausdance Queensland.

    National Advocates for Arts Education report—March 2017

    The National Advocates for Arts Education (NAAE) has had a very productive start to 2017, with the NAAE paper advocating for inclusion of the Arts in the STEM agenda being submitted to the Federal Government’s Inquiry into Innovation and Creativity: Workforce for the new economy. The paper was co-authored by John Saunders and Sandra Gattenhof (Drama Australia), with input from all other artform members of NAAE, including dance educators Jeff Meiners (SA) and Sue Fox (Qld).

    While most people only refer to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) when discussing innovation and creativity, the Arts are considered in many countries to be an essential element of an innovative economy, hence the increasing advocacy for STEAM in Australia. We note with real concern that the arts were not included in the Federal Government’s original National Innovation & Science Agenda, nor do most submissions to the current inquiry mention the Arts.

    However, strong submissions were made for a STEAM agenda by several prominent organisations, including the Australian Major Performing Arts Group (AMPAG), the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA), the Australian Copyright Council, and Arts Educators, Practitioners & Researchers Australia, as well as several universities.

    NAAE wants to bring together all those advocates for STEAM and develop a new strategy for increasing the voice of the Arts in this country’s innovation agenda.

    To keep up with current NAAE agendas and discussions about future activities, go to our NAAE Facebook page and join the conversation.

    Julie Dyson – Chair

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