The virtual learning lab and other stories

the virtual learning lab and other stories Over the past two years, life switched to the online mode

Over the past two years, life switched to the online mode. So it comes as no surprise that even dance had to learn to exist online, although it seems counter-intuitive. Today we look at a one-of-a-kind project, a strategic partnership in the area of professional training and vocational education, co-financed under the EU's Erasmus+ programme: "Teachers for SwanZ". A project initiated by the "Floria Capsali" Choreography High School in Bucharest, jointly with the "Prof. Vesselin Stoyanov" National Art School in Ruse, Bulgaria, the "Attitude" Company in Vienna, Austria and the Greek Union in Romania.

The project was launched on December 1, 2020, and it targeted the so-called Generation Z. Alina Munteanu, a psychologist with the Choreography High School and the Dinu Lipatti Music High School, gave us more details:

Alina Munteanu: "Generation Z comprises children born between 1996 and 2010. They are a little special, in that they were born across a millennium and as such they share some of the features of Gen X, they adjust easily to working on devices, and are very good at multi-tasking. For instance, our students do their homework and at the same time they listen to music, send messages on tiktok, like and share online stories. It is fascinating to see these kids speak English so well, express the Romanian culture through dancing, their willingness to get to know the Greek, Bulgarian and Austrian cultures and to promote the Romanian culture around the world. It has been a fascinating experience, and I believe it is a new beginning for a choreography high school."

Denitsa Krastanova, deputy head of the "Prof. Vesselin Stoyanov" National Art School in Ruse, also spoke about her school's participation in the project:

Denitsa Krastanova: "To start with a brief presentation of our school-we provide general primary and secondary education as well as vocational art education in areas like musical instruments, classical singing, traditional folk singing, pop and jazz singing, classical dance, Bulgarian folk dance, fine arts, advertising design and drama. As a vocational school, we were delighted to accept the Floria Capsali Choreography High School's invitation to join the project Teachers for SwanZ under Erasmus+, for a number of reasons. After we looked at the goals and the essence of the project, we assessed its long-term benefits and its positive impact. Teachers for SwanZ was an alternative way to improve professional skills, a know-how exchange and a means to encourage creativity in teaching dancing and social skills."

Laura Cristinoiu, a ballet teacher and the head of the Attitude Ballet Studios in Vienna, looked back on the project after its completion:

Laura Cristinoiu: "I am very glad to look back at these two years of work, one of them online, which is rather odd for a dance project. We are talking about dance, about ballet teachers, about teaching classical, folk and modern dance. I am very happy with the 3 outputs of the project, namely a ballet guideline for teachers of other subjects in public high schools, a dance handbook for teachers of classical dance in private and public dance schools, and, our greatest achievement, the online platform, where one can access all our workshops and everything we did during these two years. More importantly, this platform is a means of certification from this project for future dance teachers."

Diana Zăvălaș, a piano teacher with the Floria Capsali Choreography High School and the project coordinator, told us why this project was necessary:

Diana Zăvălaș: "Teachers only have access to obsolete methods, there are no life-long education programmes for dance teachers, and we set out to help them in this respect and also to provide some communication, networking, intercultural dialogue and coaching workshops, so that they may improve their relations with their students, their co-workers, and the parents. We applied for funding under Erasmus Plus and we found 3 other partners who wanted the same things, namely to improve teaching methodologies and help develop teachers' skills. Becoming familiar with other cultures and other types of methods is important, and such an international experience is quite enriching."

Apart from the specialised beneficiaries, "Teachers for SwanZ" and the "Virtual learning lab" also address dance lovers in general, and those who would like to learn and specialise in various types of dance, from classical ballet to folk dance and to contemporary dance. (AMP)
Publicat: 2022-11-29 13:40:00
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