This months inspirational story comes from Alex from Dance With Kids. If you, or your child, want to learn to dance then this is the lady to go to! She has so much energy and passion for what she does that it can’t help but rub off on everyone she meets. Although Alex is an extremely busy lady she will always make time to help people out so when I put 3 quick questions to her she was more than happy to respond. Read on to find out more!
1. Why I do what I do?
It’s very simple! I do what I do because I like doing it! I have had a lot of jobs where I had the possibility of doing something I thought I liked, but in the end, the only unhappy person, was me! Everyone else benefitted more from my work and I got nothing in return. Sometimes not even a “thank you”. I love teaching kids because they are honest, more sincere, enthusiastic, can laugh at themselves, hopeful and you can always tell if they like something or not. My main challenge in teaching Dutch children is the language barrier. Sometimes I feel that I cannot express myself as much as I would like to. Another problem I have had to overcome is getting used to the different mentality towards dance. They do not feel the same level of importance and respect as I do. It is a cultural challenge that I still face.
There have been many successes in what I am doing and I think the most important one for me is that when I see a child become confident is what they have learned and they are happy and proud of themselves, that is the best “thank you” of all! It also makes me feel pretty good when they say it too!
2. What I wished I would have known before and current challenge still facing?
One thing I wished I had known before was the more about how teenagers behave towards their piers! I find this age group very challenging and the biggest challenge is teaching them about respect and how to deal with “how” to learn dance. If you are a studying pupil, then you should be more open-minded about what you are learning. There are so many aspects of dance to learn, so there is no one way or style that you will learn. Naturally there are styles and steps that you feel more comfortable with, but that should not limit you in trying different things. I find this challenge to be a constant with teenagers. They have opinions and forget that I am their teacher whose responsibility is to teach them to become well-rounded dancers.
3. A different road I chose to follow
After some attempt of trying to start my own business, one thing I decided to do was to get a job as a dance teacher with a Dutch woman who has her own dance school. This has been a very wise and educational choice for me. I am constantly learning about the Dutch, the kids, their expectations, what dance means to them and how to work in different sitauations. I don’t regret taking this step but I do feel that I have had to pull back in my own beliefs and ways of teaching, in order to adapt to this environment. I am still learning and I hope that next year will be even better! In 2013, I will discuss the future with the owner and hopefully this will become a joint venture! I will keep you posted!
Thanks to Alex for sharing her story with us and if like me you are keen to hear more about Alex’s plans for the future, be sure to click on the subscribe button on the top right of this page so you don’t miss out on her update.