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Dancing Towards Respect

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"Values are deeply held beliefs about what is important or desirable. They are expressed through the ways in which people think and act. Students will be encouraged to value ... respect for themselves, for others and for human rights." The New Zealand Curriculum

The aim of this resource is to develop, through the art of Dance, the ability of students to show respect for themselves, for others and for human rights by:

  • Developing an awareness of what respect means
  • Recognising and responding safely to their own emotions
  • Recognising the emotions of other people
  • Responding to the emotions of others with empathy

The resource, written by Julie Cadzow, is in three parts and they are focussed on Levels 6-8 in the New Zealand Curriculum NCEA Achievement Standards are included in each part and suggestions are given for opportunities for further assessment.

  • Part One: Respect for Yourself This unit takes students on a movement journey towards respect for themselves. They will identify characteristics of selected emotions and explore ways to control their emotions through dance. They will compose movement sequences alone and with others, and will consider the idea of 'balance' as not only a still shape in dance but also as a sign of respect for themselves and something to be attained in their emotional lives.

    Managing Emotions: The goal is balance, not emotional suppression: every feeling has its value and significance Daniel Goreman, Emotional Intelligence

    Prosocial classroom management and learning activities are beneficial to individuals and society Kohn, A. (1991)

    NCEA Achievement Standards: Dance 1.1 (AS90001) - Compose Movement Sequences (Part 1) Dance 2.2 (AS90294) - Choreograph a Solo Dance

  • Part Two: Respect for Others This unit builds on the skills developed in Unit One: Respect For Yourself. Students will have the opportunity to participate in class discussions and practical dance activities that identify and explore respectful and disrespectful behaviours. They will create and perform safe counter-balances and weight-taking movements to represent the sharing of problems and being responsible for others. They will also create dance sequences for a duet or a trio and will discover facts about two highly respected New Zealanders who have made huge contributions to the development of dance in Aotearoa/New Zealand - Sir Apirana Ngata and Sir Jon Trimmer.

    Empathy is the ability to recognise and understand another person's perceptions and feelings, and to accurately convey that understanding through an accepting response. L.A Haynes and A.W Avery (1979)

    Empathy is the key ingredient to responsible citizenship and responsive parenting Mary Gordon, Roots of Empathy

    NCEA Achievement Standards: Dance 1.1 (AS90001) - Compose Movement Sequences (Part 2) Dance 2.1 (AS90293) - Choreograph a section of dance for a group

  • Part Three: Respect for Human Rights This unit builds on the skills developed in Unit One: Respect For Yourself and Unit Two: Respect for Others. Students will have the opportunity to gain knowledge about a human rights issue, study three famous speeches written by human rights advocates and create dance about making a positive difference to the lives of others.

    The ability to assume the role of another person and to imagine that person's feelings and/or behaviour can increase empathetic behaviour. Underwood and Moore, (1982)

    Student activities where the focus is on the lives and achievements of well-known empathetic people can increase the student's desire to behave like and have similar attitudes to them. Dixon, (1980)

    NCEA Achievement Standards: Dance 1.1 (AS90001) - Compose Movement Sequences (Part 3)

  • Dixon, D. A. "The Caring Curriculum." School and Community 67/4 (1980)
  • Ekman, P. (2003). Emotions Revealed. London: Phoenix
  • Goleman, D. (1995). Emotional Intelligence. New York: Bantam Books
  • Gordon, M. Roots of Empathy .
  • Haynes, L. A. and Avery, A. W. "Training Adolescents in Self-Disclosure and Empathy Skills." Journal of Community Psychology 26/6 (1979)
  • Ihi FrENZY - video: Ministry of Education resource
  • Ka'ai, T.M., Moorfield, J.C., Reilly, M.P.J., and Mosley, S. (eds) Ki Te Whaiao: An Introduction to Maori Culture and Society (2004)
  • Kohn, A. "Caring Kids: The Role of the Schools." Phi Delta Kappan 72/7 (1991)
  • Kremer, J. F. and Dietzen, L. L. "Two Approaches to Teaching Accurate Empathy to Undergraduates: Teacher-Intensive and Self-Directed." Journal of College Student Development 32 (1991)
  • McCollough, T. E. Truth and Ethics in School Reform. Washington, DC: Council for Educational Development and Research, 1992.
  • Shennan, S. (2003). 'a time to dance' The Royal New Zealand Ballet at 50
  • Underwood, B. and Moore, B. 'Perspective-Taking and Altruism." Psychological Bulletin 91/1 (1982)
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