Do you love World of Dance (WOD)? I do. Right now, I’m a little distracted because it’s a show I enjoy; this is a very full week; I haven’t quite prepared for tomorrow; AND I haven’t yet written. So, I confess I’m writing and watching and thinking about the Learning Circle I’m supposed to facilitate tomorrow. Our Learning Circle is studying growth mindset. Tomorrow our discussion is going to center on five stances described by Kristi Mraz and Christine Hertz in their book, A Mindset for Learning.
We often talk about lenses affecting the way we see things and how they influence how we see our students and their learning. The stances invite us to approach life and learning from different spaces. At least that is how I’m interpreting it. The five stances are optimism, flexibility, persistence, resilience, and empathy. We hear these words often in current media of all types. I hope they don’t just become “buzz” words that lose their power by overuse.
I’m thinking how the performers on World of Dance are mostly young people who certainly exhibit many of these stances (especially flexibility:). I think of all the practice, the dreams, the sacrifice of time and money, all to pursue something beautiful and creative with the body as the instrument. What has allowed these young people to be able to have the goal of performing on World of Dance? When you hear their individual stories, they are varied. Some come from poverty, so it’s not just about opportunity. Some have lost parents or siblings, so it’s not just about family support. What systems of thinking were awakened in them? How? When?
Lenses, stances, and the work. Maybe the dancers’ success is more about the work. In the book, “the work” includes self-talk, storytelling, goal-setting, and reflection. These are the parts to practice. Do I know what self-talk sounds like? What stories are being told with and without words? Is there a goal with a plan? Is there time to rest and reflect?
I have a lot more questions than answers. In the meantime, I’ll enjoy the energy of young dancers, the beauty of an art form I always longed to do, and the ways that dance expresses so much that is universal.