Dance ED Tip #26:
Dance teachers’ tips on how to overcome a bad class

April 16, 2018 - Olivia Mode-Cater

 
On Friday I posted a video about how horribly I bombed a dance class with my kindergarten and first graders. Even though I have taught this age group for a long time, on that day nothing came together. They were hyper, inattentive, and distracted. I tried lots of ways that have worked in the past of reeling them into the content, but on that day, everything failed. The feelings that came were the absolute worst. I felt defeated, frustrated, helpless, anxious, and more.
 
When this happens to me I try to analyze every little place where I went wrong, what parts of class I could’ve done better, and think of a plan for the following week on how to tackle these issues. But sometimes things are just out of our control and we have to do the hardest thing, which is to let it go and try again next time.  
 
After I posted my video, my followers wrote the nicest comments that really helped me put the situation into perspective and I think there are others who can benefit from hearing their advice. Here are some of their #danceedtips:

natalierswan: My PK kids were way off this week! Sometimes we sit and watch/participate in a kid friendly meditation video for a moment.

conversiondanceproject: It happens to all teachers at one time or another in their career and usually more than once. I have had days like this. It feels terrible I know, but a bad teaching day does not equal a bad teacher just that you’re human. Hang in there! Showing back up to go again after a crappy day takes guts and courage! I also think it’s a great learning tool for students to observe perseverance through challenging days simply by watching their teacher reassess what didn’t go so well, adjust it and keep showing up.

laylashmayla: Not this week, but I have definitely been there and it is the absolute worst feeling... but that's a lesson for our students as well... we aren't perfect, things don't always go as planned and its ok.
 
thebeaglequeen: This happens to me a few times a month. You’re definitely not alone. Working with kids is difficult. Trying to teach them a disciplined art form is even more difficult. It’s normal!
 
marinamunozx2o: Not alone! Teaching kinders is like trying to teach kittens to dance, and care about it
 
itsimani:  It’s classes like that... That send me to car therapy. Where I call my bestie or two and just cry it out. Away from the situation but in the safe space of an empathetic friend. As an empathetic co-Dance educator... I feel you. Treat yourself well. Shake it off. Breathe. Let next week take care of itself. Sending love your way!!!
 
mrsheyheyhaley: At least when they’re that little they won’t judge you. That’s what I remind myself when I flop with my littles. By next class they’ll have forgotten all about me being flustered and out of sync and we can start fresh.
 
Kandice PointduJour: ‪Girl it's called Life and it probably wasn't as bad as you think. :)
 
Nancy Dow Olivia, after 45 years of teaching, I still have days when I feel I've never taught a day in my life!