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Browsing by Subject "Balettitunti"

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  • Salmenmaa, Iiris (2018)
    This Master’s thesis delves into the world of dance education. The objective was to examine a teaching method in which children act as teachers. The intervention study performed focusses on children who teach their own parents. The study aims at exploring this new method of teaching and learning. There are not many studies that have been conducted in the field of dance education, a field which provides many opportunities for developing a new concept for teaching. The new curricula devised for day-care, preschool and basic education challenge teachers to increasingly involve learners in the learning process. The possibilities to increase the physical activity, performance skills and self-esteem of children as part of the learning process are the reason why ballet education has been chosen as the context of examining the new learning method. As far as is known, a study like the present one has not been carried out before. There is not much research data on ballet instruction for young children. Children teaching their parents is also a subject on which no previous studies are available. As a researcher, I applied the pedagogics of ballet and dance instruction, the pedagogics of learning and teaching, as well as related research data to the study of various themes that arose during the research.   A Ballet Teaching Workshop was held in January 2018 at Tanssila Dance School in Helsinki. The study examines the thoughts of nine children and their accompanying parents concerning the ballet class included in the workshop. The material consists of preliminary interviews with the children and their parents, forms completed by the parents and post-research interviews with the children. The researcher’s reflection on her own role as a teacher in the framework of the ‘children as teachers’ teaching method forms an important part of the study.   According to the study, the adults mainly regarded their children’s chance to act as teachers as a positive experience, despite some conflicting views. Several adults considered it important that the children experienced a sense of achievement while acting as teachers. Some adults were unsure about the effectiveness of being taught by children, while others felt that the joy of doing things together with their children was the most important benefit of the workshop. Many of the adults expressed their surprise of the children’s good teaching skills. The study revealed a number of different aspects related to teaching. The things considered important included the teachers’ skills in dance routines and their use of voice. According to the parents, the demonstration in front of the group was the most important and most useful channel of learning when the children acted as teachers. During the workshop, half of the parents discovered new facets in their children. The observations were varied and ranged from the children’s courage to reflection on the performance of certain ballet routines by the children. The children’s feelings about acting as a teacher varied from pleasant to embarrassed. Teaching alone in front of the others was felt to be exciting. The children thought that the adults were mostly good learners. Several of the children later wondered about the numerous questions asked by the adults on dance techniques. The children had also noticed quality fluctuations in the performance of dance techniques by their parents. For many children, it was important to point out how they were much more skilled than their parents. The researcher’s reflection raises benefits of the ‘children as teachers’ teaching method for application to other uses in the sphere of teaching.