In early 2022, Jennifer Aoki-Bolcsfoldi, a dance artist and student in Langara College’s Recreation Leadership program, observed our online Dancing the Parenting program for several weeks. Here are a few takeaways from Jennifer about the program that might help people get a feel for how the Zoom practice has been going for the past two years.
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The program design:
“During my observations, I noticed that the intentional design of the program flowed seamlessly from beginning to end. Each week followed a similar structure while building on concepts of having a good balance of repetition and new explorations. Julie created a welcoming and inclusive environment as she cheerfully welcomed each participant by name and interchangeably spoke French and English.”
“For each of the four classes I observed, they did a land acknowledgment of putting their roots in the ground like they are a tree. Thinking about the land they are on, trees nearby, and water nearby. Thinking about the Indigenous people that took care of this land. This demonstrated that children are never too young to learn about the land they are on.”
The goal of program:
“An overall goal for Dancing the Parenting is to create a welcoming and inclusive space where caregivers and children can experience movement that doesn’t have expectations of a certain behavior or outcome. This is done by following the curiosities of the group and recognizing the emerging curriculum that comes up. For example, if one of the children expresses an interest in cars, the facilitator may find a book about cars, talk about rolling, and then explore rolling the body.”
Jennifer’s overall thoughts:
“I learned from my observations how a well thought out intentionally designed program leads to the success of offering a program that meets the needs of their community. I was drawn to Julie’s friendly personality, ability to give clear instructions that open creative possibilities, and adapting her cues based on the needs of the group. The high level of engagement in the children’s unique ways and the caregivers expressing how much their child looks forward to the program and the benefits to their child’s development shows the value of the program.”
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A huge thank you to Jennifer for her thoughtful comments! Our online Dancing the Parenting sessions take place every Monday from 9:30-10:15 PST. You can learn more and register here: https://foolishoperations.org/dancing-the-parenting/
Jennifer Aoki (she/her) is a fourth-generation Japanese Canadian dancer and choreographer who grateful to be living and working on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the Coast Salish Peoples. She is inspired by the infinite possibilities of human movement and expression. Her work addresses themes such as the intersectionality of identity and cultural belonging. She is driven to form meaningful connections with others through the language of movement. Her work has been presented across Canada, as well as in Seattle, Amsterdam, and Berlin. She holds a BFA degree in Dance from Simon Fraser University and is a student in the Recreation Leadership Diploma Program at Langara College.
Learn more about Jen’s practice:
Facebook: @Jen Aoki-Bolcsfoldi
Learn more about Langara’s Recreation Leadership Diploma:
Facebook: Recreation Studies at Langara College