As the end of the course looms ever closer, it is a good time to reflect on how this course has changed me as a person professionally and personally.
18 months ago I was singing on a cruise ship, struggling to get internet and feeling desperately homesick.
Today I am choreographing musicals for two local Secondary school, teaching dance at a Musical Theatre academy,working as a SEN teaching assistant and living on land:). Quite a change!
In one of my old blogs I likened myself to Rita in the film Educating Rita and apart from not changing my name to Susan, this analogy still applies. She too entered the alien world of academic learning and embarked on a journey of self-discovery which culminated in the changing of her aspirations and ambitions.
This course has enabled me to do the very same supporting me in my transition from performer to dance teacher.
My aim was always to be the best dance teacher I could be, but now I have an understanding of how to do this, ethically and professionally. The course has taught me the importance of questioning my practice and finding answers to those questions, taking my academic learning to a new level and heightening my problem solving skills. I can now read a piece of research, analyse it's usefulness for purpose, extract from it relevant data and apply it to my practice. It has given me a new appreciation and understanding of the works of the theorists and provided me with teaching and learning strategies I can apply to my own practice.
The course has given me the confidence to carry out my own research project, by following a carefully designed and structured pathway, guided by tutor and peer support from online SIG groups and blogs. At each step of the journey the course asks us to reflect not only on our practice but on our strengths and weaknesses. It is as much as about self-discovery as it is about academia.
Work based learning suited my lifestyle, during the course I've worked on cruise ships, pantomimes and several touring shows:) there has been comfort in knowing that wherever you are in the world (excluding rubbish ship internet), the course and a whole support network is only a click away. (It is amazing how close you can become to people whom you have never met). I have developed strong friendships and a valuable professional network for the future.
As I end this course I am proud of myself and of what I have achieved.
Finally, my transition is complete!!!!!!!!