Swing Discussion Boards > Kicked out of class

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by hepcat, Feb 13, 2006.

  1. waltzgirl

    waltzgirl Active Member

    From what you've said about her and apparently heard about her from other people, it seems like it's a personality problem of hers, rather than any real reflection on your skill. Feel sorry for her! It must be miserable to live that way. If she needs to put other people down, she is more insecure than you are. So be kind to the poor thing and let anything she does or says roll right off you.
  2. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    Yeah, I'm probably only fretting right now because the possibility of encountering her in rotation just ocurred to me. I'm sure after I've gotten used to the idea, I'll be fine. As I've been with others who've only mildly irritated me, I'll likely just be quiet and focus on the instruction (as you suggest). Still, right now, thinking about it makes me nervous.

    It was funny. Last night at our weekly dance, a dance friend of mine who usually keeps to himself and doesn't talk to me very much approached me and told me about how he'd just discovered dance-forums.com and the first thing he read was this thread. He was dying to know where and who I was talking about. I told him and he was like "Oh yeah! She's a bitch!" Since he keeps to himself so much, I was surprised he had an opinion about her. I wouldn't have guessed that he'd even ever talked to her. I was also surprised that he read the entire thread! I know I can be long winded, but he said it was very interesting to read everyone's opinion.

  3. luh

    luh Active Member

    well - you are gonna rock. I'm sure!
  4. luh

    luh Active Member

    i don't get it

    I just got kicked out of class! (as hepcat i'm gonna keep names out of this)

    When reading this thread i never even thought about that happening to me - but now there we are.

    The situation is different, and in some parts even worse!

    A new class turn starts this week. (tomorrow).

    I've always been in level 2, because i couldn't make it to level 3 timewise.

    Now, at the last workshop a follower from our scene offered me to stay at her house over night, and than ask a teacher to drive with to school (about a 1h ride). (usually i have 2 hours home from the dancing location). So i told my teacher, and she is like "yeah, cool, come to three as well", and she even said i could come to level 4. She was honest. No kidding, nothing like "well - you might not be good enough" or anything like that. (she would've told me that if i wouldn't be good enough, that i can't come, she is a very tough teacher, but really really good, and we all like her.

    Well that kind of changed. I've just called the follower I'll be staying tomorrow, and SHE told me that, she got kicked out of class, because she missed in the last course term 3 lessons. (this is really not much, twice she was not able because of her job - which is understandable, and another time she was really sick - so this just can happen), she was told that, AND that there are not enough leaders. and this is not completely true, because with me it was enough leaders (equal).

    So what our teacher did, is - that she kicked me out as well. But i got this information from the follower, which i think is really uncool! (i think it's very unpolite - but let's look how the whole thing turns out) I would've preferred it way more, if the teacher would've told me, - i have no problem - if she would've had a good reason. But I NEVER missed a class in a whole year teaching. i'm really not the best dancer, but probably the most energetic (as i got told from different followers).

    So, now I'm waiting for the official kick out of class.
    I'm really intrested what she is going to tell me.

  5. normalized

    normalized New Member

    well, as much as I can gather from your story. Your being in or not was dependent on your partner and since she got kicked out, you did as well. Perhaps the instructor didn't think about that when they asked you or something else came up, whatever. Yeah, it's a little screwed up that you had to find out secondhand but they probably did that so they wouldn't have to deal with you. If this instructor/school does business in this way consistently, maybe it's best to leave.

    Perhaps you can call the instructor and talk with them. This also applies to Hepcat and his dealings with the bi___. It does wonders when you can take somebody aside and say (unthreatedingly) "hey, you know I've been wondering about....."
  6. luh

    luh Active Member

    There is no thing like partners here. I've never been in a class here with a partner. I've always come alone. We do rotate a lot in class. (she is more than twice my age btw! - i'm really just staying at her house, that's all)
    And it is not the case that there wouldn't be good enough followers that could go with me instead.

    the thing that it is totally untypical for my teacher to do so. I've never had such a situation with her, and neither has the follower. I don't know anybody who has experienced her like that before.

    my teacher also told the follower she'd mail me - or - the follower asked her to contact me. well - I'll see her tomorrow, I'll see what happens. The instructor will still have to tell me - she doesn't know that i know already.

    Well i'm gonna post the new things in this post - just pretty confused about this whole thing - you might understand this!
  7. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    Perhaps you haven't even been kicked out luh. Could your partner be assuming that since she's kicked out, you're kicked out too? I can't imagine having someone be kicked out because there was 1 uneven lead/follow. Is this a class that rotates or do you only dance with one partner the entire time? Is there only one teacher for the class or could two teachers (lead & follow) be butting heads and negating offers another made?

  8. luh

    luh Active Member

    well it might be - but than - i'm kind of dependend to the follower, because i don't know yet where she lives...

    but as far as i can tell - my instructor told this follower that i won't be in either. (she couldn't use the lead/follow ratio argument against her than)

    we rotate, as i said above - i've never had a partner. only for ballroom classes, but never ever in a swing class.

    oh - and there is just one teacher for level 1,2,4 - there is just this one teacher. level 3 is taught by friends. This is going on for years by now like this - this will not be the problem!
  9. luh

    luh Active Member

    so we had class yesterday, and for a fact:

    i got kicked out

    reason: she rethought it and decided that I'm not good enough yet. I don't know why she first said that i'm good enough, and now i'm not.

  10. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Dancing should be about fun... lessons are about learning, which can be fun with certain teachers at certain levels. I can't emphasize enough, Advanced classes are not about having fun in the traditional sense. It is about pushing your self, becoming the best you can be... for certain type A personalities that is fun.

    You have to accept that. If your idea is for fun on the social floor, there is no need to take Advanced classes.

    Another way to look at it is that you should aim to be the middle to best dancer in your level. Think how annoyed you are when you get someone in rotation who can't do the technique or move being taught. There is some fundamental flaw in their basics. When you dance with them you are hamstrung, your concentrating more on compensating for them than you are on doing what is being taught.

    At each level there is a range of dancers. Some who are the most skilled in a level and those who are the lowest skilled in that level. And then there are those who do not posses the skill necessary to be in that level. Just because someone is the best at a begining class or intermediate class does not mean they are ready for the next level.

    It is dependant for teachers and promoters to be clear about the levels for their classes, workshops, and events. When someone is of the wrong level it is their responsibility to ask that person to move down to the appropriate level, refunding money if necessary, but in the most polite and non-confrontational way possible. IF the student questions this, there should be some sort of procedure set up... a way to test. Dancing with the instructors at a camp or special event may be possible, but the average class/workshop does not allow for such testing.

    A student who is asked politely to go down a level but creates a confrontation should be removed. No refund, no classes, there dance level is no longer the problem, but their social skills are. Promoters who create confrontations should be blacklisted. You and your friends should not attend their classes or events, and if they are the only game in town, contact instgructors on your own and put together your own events.

    I'm running an Advanced level at the SF Blues Dance even Down Home Blues. It is the first national event to include an advanced level. I'm solving the entire problem by inviting those who the instructors know are of the right level, making the classes early in the morning and running an audition process. The early morning classes should help disuade those who come mainly to party (our dances run until 4am or later), the audition process, a choreographed routine that incorporates both partnered and solo blues, will be very difficult, we haven't decided yet if it will be learned with one partner or rotate, but how the individual performs it and how they learn will be judged.

    Hopefully the process will eliminate some of the people who don't belong, but at the same time will reveal people who do belong but who I or the other instructors do not know personally.
  11. luh

    luh Active Member

    i think it's not very polite to get the information that you are not in a course to which one you were asked to by the instructor by a third person and it turns out to be true!
    I don't say it's not okay that i got kicked out - if she decides so (which IS strange because she asked ME, not i asked her) i am going to accept it - but not in this way. I think this is just not a way to treat students!

    I also think it is not about being the best in class. This competetive thinking is not very appreciated here - especially not in our scene. We all dance for the fun of it. Maybe this is as well because there are no competitions here - or there are no competitions here because people don't want to.

    And there IS a good reason to be in an advanced level even as not competitor and just for the fun dancer - because even those people can be pretty darn good. I think your opinion to this is not cool!

    i wish you a lot of fun at your camp.
  12. d nice

    d nice New Member

    I'm not sure what you mean about
    Advanced dancers like to have fun as much as the next dancer... but there is a difference between an advanced social dancer (someone who dances at a high technical level) and someone who takes advanced classes to be the best they can be.
  13. luh

    luh Active Member

    yes - but this second type does not exist here. Not in our scene, and i know quite a lot of other scenes, where there are no such people who aim to be the best. because there is no sense here to be the best. - why should someone want to be the best? - because of his self-image? - he wouldn't survive here very long. That's what i meant with competetive dancing. here it's not anything about rivalry, good dancers have fun if there other good dancers. The thought of "i want to be better than x or y" is not very accepted.

    To be a good dancer is an aim though that is natural. But we are happy when other people get better, (to our level or higher), because we see they have fun, and there is a reason they are better than we are. But that person had not in mind to be better then someone else, but just got better, because she/he loves to dance.

  14. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    Luh, you're instructor was being rude and inappropriate, plain and simple. I'd recommend just trying to be patient with her and let it slide if you can. It's not like you asked to be at that higher level. You were invited.

    I don't think it's polite to blacklist or remove anyone (especially without refund) despite their behavior, so I wouldn't recommend any such action on your part toward this instructor. You should always try to find a common ground and be understanding. Only after repeated such cases should anyone consider such drastic measures. A lot of times, if you're patient with someone and are nice, that person will start to self-evaluate and their behavior will improve on its own. It's better to diffuse a situation than inflame it. It's like this one girl I know: she can be mean sometimes, but I ignore it for the most part or sometimes will very gently chide her in a subtle manner. Now she says things like: "I feel guilty being mean to someone around you. It makes me want to be a better person." It is a huge compliment and I've gotten that before from others. What I think happens a lot is that people go along with things that someone might say or do that are mean toward someone else because it feels like comeraderie. It gives you something to commiserate about which is a form of bonding. But it's also a form of peer pressure. I think that's how exclusive cliques get started. I don't like cliques and like to promote patience and understanding. Some people can be very difficult. I know some very ornery tango leads who can be extremely impetulent. The follows in the scene exhibit vast amounts of patience with him that I'm not sure I could do, but I'd say it's working on him. He behaves himself for the most part now.

    However, I understand that not everyone has that kind of patience, so I suppose it has to be the sort of thing that is different from case to case (meaning I might give different advice depending on the situation). However in general, I still disagree with the fundamental idea of kicking people out of class. I'm not saying let people choose their level willie nillie. I just think there are much better ways to deal with misplaced dancers. And I'll reiterate: I'm glad I don't have to deal with it and wouldn't want to.

    Having one person in rotation who is misplaced is no big deal as long as you rotate. As long as it's not a rampant problem and is a relatively small proportion of misplaced dancers, people should help eachother out instead of get annoyed over it. That's what I do. I very much enjoy it when I can give someone a little piece of info that can make a difference in their dancing. I'll get to try the move better after the next rotation. Even though I'm there to learn, I don't mind shifting my attention once or twice in rotation so that I can help someone else learn. Sometimes I'll think to myself that they should be in a lower class, but honestly, I just don't care that much. Life's too short to make little things like that into an issue. I'm not going to make it any shorter by getting upset about it. If you disagree with me, that's fine. I don't claim to have the answer. But from what I've seen at workshops is that there is no problem, although I should stipulate that I haven't dealt with this issue very much at an advanced level - only from an intermediate level with regard to misplaced beginners. Maybe my opinion will change in time.

    And please dnice, don't take anything I've said personally. I'm glad you gave your opinion. I respect it. It's a difficult issue and I don't know if what I think would work if applied to a larger scene such as in California on a regular basis, so I'm only restricting my views to weekend workshops where you get people from out of town (for reasons I've mentioned earlier).

  15. d nice

    d nice New Member

    I'm not going to take it personal, everyone has their own opinions.

    Personally I think having one person in an advanced level class can make a big difference, I've seen it happen.

    Luh, I think you are misunderstanding me, being better than someone (the best ini the scene/city) is very different than being as good as they can be (meaning they strive for personal excellence, the best that person can be).

    Your particular scene may not have anyone who strives to be better than other people, but that IMO is more of a fluke than anything else. In the states I don't know of a scene larger than a group of friends that doesn't have a competitive aspect, even if it is only between a few people and all in fun.
  16. luh

    luh Active Member

    there are no lindy hop dance competitions in europe i have heard of - (and i did search for them). the only ones i was able to find were at dance camps, and those are really just for the fun of it.

    i think (and not wanting to offend here people!), the competetive way of thinking is very american. There is competition between schools, colleges, there are comps all over the place. (not just dancing).

    this is WAY less comon here.
  17. leftfeetnyc

    leftfeetnyc New Member

    Luh, competition doesn't just mean events with specific competions. Humans, by nature, strive to be better than others.

    There's a saying in America, "Keeping up with the Jones'" It means that if one neighbor gets a big new shiny fancy car another neighbor will have a desire for the same or a better car.

    The same logic applies to dancing. People probably won't talk about it but even in your scene where there is no competition event, many dancers probably want to be the best dancer on the floor.

    I agree that even with rotation, one weakly skilled person can change the dynamic of what is a higher skilled class. Advanced dancers in an advanced class tend to learn quickly, so the class has to progress at a faster rate and a number of other skills need to have been previously mastered in order to make the advanced moves and concepts work.

    You mentioned that the teacher invited you to the higher skilled class. I don't think what she did was necessarily wrong or rude. Talk to her about it. Based on the nature of higher level classes, she might have thought you'd be fine only to discover afterwards that the skill level of the class would be higher than she anticipated. She may even have been worrying that you may not have felt comfortable in that kind of setting (whether that was the case or not, people tend to make assumptions).
  18. luh

    luh Active Member

    yes but there are different ways that they are distinct - and i think it's very strongly distincted in the us, and less here.

  19. It's Wonderful

    It's Wonderful New Member

    I'd have to disagree - when I've traveled in Europe, I've found the urge to be the best dancer on the floor is just as prevalent. Not to say everyone is glaring at the better dancers and working night and day to show them up, but people who are committed to dancing (and don't just go to the once a week social and free class) do take classes and workshops with the goal of improving and eventually reaching their personal best. For me, there no competitions for quite a distance, but still in jams and just on the social floor there is friendly level of rivalry that drives people to take more advanced classes, put in that little extra effort, and do their best. No one's disappointed when some one else does well - quite the opposite, we cheer them on! But I think everyone would like to do all they can, why stop half way? :cool:

    True, there are dancers who dance SOLELY to win, but they are a different animal entirely, and one that crosses borders freely. And, I'd have to say, we have very few if any here on DF.
  20. luh

    luh Active Member

    nice - that's how it should be. though i think it is not the same as d nice described. if so, than I'll take it back, because that's how it feels for me over here.

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