The first workshop went well! The students were very enthusiastic and engaged. I started with a brief overview of the Métis and Métis dancing. I shared my story and explained what we would be doing over the next couple of weeks — learning the Red River Jig! Then I performed the dance to show them what it will look like. They asked questions along the way.
We tried a few different ways of learning the basic jig step. Some of the students were a bit shy to introduce themselves in the opening circle and to share anything about their background. One or two struggled to get the steps but overall most caught on quickly. I’m going to focus on ‘leave no jigger behind’ in the next session. We’re going to slow it down again and all wait until everyone gets it before we move on. I tried to emphasize diversity of learning styles means we all have different ways of catching on.
Also, I really loved when the Marina, the Stonecrest Elementary principal, joined in. She was very supportive in helping students one on one with me and gave me great feedback after the session. If possible I’d love to show them a few videos in the next sessions — with full speakers and LCD projector. I will also get them on stage to do blocking and prepare them for the live performance at the Awesome Arts Festival.
Ginny Gonneau, Métis Jigger, MASC Artist