If life is what happens to our plans, then dance is what happens to our steps.
ideas sometimes when you wait they come to you.

Preparation for starting with BAPP

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Can action be reflection?

Melissa wrote an interesting blog about reflection and the reader

More research on Reflective Practice

I commented on her blog as below. I  putting it on my blog because I think it would be interesting to get others peoples take too

The first part of your blog about Kolb is really interesting. I too, find it hard to understand each part when I think of them out context of the cycle. That is as a lone activity. I think it helps to remember thinks can be focus on a larger whole. The whole is the cycle the entry points are just ways to understand the movement of the cycle. BUT if you really want to see where you enter I think it helps to think of ... if you have a plat-pack cupboard kit in front of you what do you do. 1) Just start making it, 2) read all the instructions first, 3) check-out one that's already made or someone else making it, 4) plan out all the stages by putting the parts in order of use. I have trained myself to look at all the parts. BUT the 'real' me would sooner just start and learn as aI do it even if it takes longer than reading the instruction or I end up making something else and have bits left over!!!!!
Anyway the flat-pack question helps me think about the points of the cycle more easily.

Then I want to say a quick word about what you say about reflection-in-action and reflection-on-action, Schon and Kottcamp. It is important to check-out what you consider thinking and what you think with. These are not a 'facts'. There are many arguments that define thinking. Your blog implies that thinking and learning are mental / mind activities. I think That the brush strokes of the painter. They are meaningful movements. When I go to look at Van Goth's paintings at the National Gallery I see his brush stroke and they talk to me as deeply as him talking to me would. The movement of the brush strokes have emotion, knowledge, sensitivity, understanding of the flower or chair they create in my eye. I believe reflection-in-action or on-action  is also to do with what you value as reflection. Remember not everything, thoughts or ideas has to have words to it. In dance think of contact improv. there is a physical conversation without words but you know and you exchange ideas.

In answer to the question I pose "Can action be reflection?" I passionately believe that action is reflection. Dewey points out its all very well working out the best way (theory) to do something but to be part of a community (network) it is only useful if you actually do something about it. This is also important to me as a woman because so many western women philosophers did rather than wrote about it and the importance put on words rather than action have led us to loose much of the meaning behind their work. But I am sure I also feel like this because I am dyslexic and constantly justifying my bad relationship with words!!! What do you think?

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Task 2c

E-mailed question: “I wonder if you could explain what exactly I need to do for task 2c...”
Answer: Write an short ‘essay’ (aprox.1 000- 1500 words) about your relationship with Reflective Practise

This means write about reflective practises that you have experienced, tried-out, and /or see in others. Maybe use the experience of keeping your reflective diary or blogging to frame the essay. But don’t just tell the story of your experience look at it through the theory of some the Thinkers mentioned in the reader (like Dewey, Schön; Kolb, Moon). Critically look at the theory. Try to quote from some of the people you reference. Try to use proper referencing techniques. Discuss whether the theory resonates with you and your experience; see if you can extend your reading beyond the books and Thinkers mentioned in the reader. (There are not many voices of women or non-white Thinkers in the reader see if you can find these voices too.)

It is a very short essay 1000-1500 word. I would post it on my blog to get feedback. Use this as an opportunity to learn about and practise academic style techniques, (language, citations) for writing. Does that all make sense? How are the tasks going for you all?

Thursday, 21 October 2010


I just looked at Ruby's Flicker page she is a make up artist. She has some great shots. I am posting pictures of my good friend Iggy. We have know each other for years, from when I lived in New York with him. He is well established in his field. He does all his make-up and costumes and as well sometimes working as a make-up artist for other people. I think he makes beautiful work, very detailed. What do you think, Ruby?

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Campus session, Reflection

Hi guys how was campus session. I couldn't go!!!!   :(
Reflection comments PLEASE :)
This is my first time using faces. I never thought I would  ;)


Saturday, 16 October 2010

Positioning of Self

Thinking about the whole semester, that is the three sections of the WBS 3002. You may be starting the next section (Reflective practise) having worked through the technologies section. It is important that you think of the work as joined up. There are many threads in this module that continue across the whole course. So there are many ways that the three sections join up. It is important not to think of the modules as a long set of tasks to complete.

The module is not written from a positivist perspective. Positivism values the idea that there is one truth, one thing that is out there to find. This is what a lot of ‘science’ based ‘learning’ (research) assumes. That something is out there and it is up to us to find it. This kind of work would mean it made sense for someone to tell you what to do, where to go to get that truth. You would follow the instructions and find it! But we are not doing that. Simply ‘doing’ the tasks will not mean you will trip over some answer. This is not like ‘hide and seek’ or a ‘treasure hunt’, we hide the answer and you find it and get a BA (Hons) as the prize!!!

The tasks are ‘experiences’ / activities that we think will help you. It is not only ‘doing’ the task it is thinking about the experience of doing them and it is looking at how other people have done them that will give you the information we hope you derive from the module. This is why I think you should think of the whole module as one episode (not a linear progression through time). Each section looks at the same ‘thing’ but from a different perspective.  Like walking around the edge of a big circle looking into the middle, different parts of the circle will give you different views. The module is the circle and each section is a different point on the circle. What we are looking at is YOU.  At the end of this episode (module) we want you do be able to know more about what is in the middle … that is YOU.

First we look at YOU from the perspective of what you do and what you have done, and how you present the ‘working you’. Then we look at YOU from the perspective of how you think about the meaning of what happens to you, and how you make sense of YOU!!! This is reflection, your inner conversations, looking at how they are a part of your journey. Lastly we look at YOU from the perspective of how you fit into the community, population around you. How you are connected to your world. By the end we want you to feel you have a clearer picture of YOU and have a clear way to continue to question and look at YOU.

Why are we looking at YOU?  Because it is YOU who is doing the course. You are the vehicle being used to go on the journey of the course. This first module is to find out how the vehicle works, giving yourself a little MOT to see where you have strengths where you want to develop. Getting yourself a picture of YOU!!!

As a way to help underline the idea we are looking at the same thing in different ways in order to understand it, we have identified three perspectives. As you have read in the handbooks. 1) From the perspective of the tools (actions) technologies. 2) from the perspective of what you think, your inner conversations  3) from the perspective of what other people have said, referencing other people (importantly people who have published work or have their work recognised by a large group of people). The first part of the module was technologies based, it looked and had a number of tasks that meant practise using  different tools like Web 2.0 to get you started but it is not completing the tasks that is important, it is what you can (articulate you) get out of doing the tasks that is important. You can’t know what you can get out of them with out doing them but it does not stop at just doing them. The task is an experience you need to go on to make the experience meaningful and connected to what you want to achieve. That is where the work lays.  

So I see this module as you finding the place you are at. This is called positioning. You can then go on to interact with the ideas the course will introduce.  I might know I am interested in XXXX from my reflections, (I noticed all my diary enters mentioned this, it makes sense because when I look back I always felt I did better in XXXX, I tend to read better when things are paper but I enjoy the free flow of drawing I can use this to take notes. I work best at night I realised this when I started to notice I wrote better blogs at night. Etc….. So when I read Hegel next semester I might be aware I will be more willing to accept his ideas because I know I like…..I should question my dislike of Goffman because it might be because I think he is racist rather than the ideas he has about identity. I may not be sure what I think but now I know if I go for a long walk and write something that evening I might get through the block etc, etc…

OK reader I am really interested to know if this makes sense please let know (in a nice way!!!) 

Tuesday, 12 October 2010


I am  looking for 7 to 8 dancers (BUT not for any body on the BAPP course at the moment, graduate students welcome!) to be apart of an initial Research and Development project to do with site-specific work. Dancers are required for four days across November and December (November 30th, December 6th, 9th and 14th). Part of the four days will be spent working with children to choreograph dances in sites in their school. This should be a fun and interesting project. It is part of the final year of my PhD. If you are on BAPP maybe you could forward this information to someone you think might be interested.

Due to funding there is only travel paid for this initial stage. Dancers interested are asked to send CV to Adesola at adesola@dancingstrong.com as soon as possible. Please also indicate if you have a current CRB check.

To find out more about Adesola's work please visit www.dancingstrong.com 

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Validity and CVs

Looking at the CV task.  Here are some things I think are important:
DO NOT put your physical address or phone number on your Blog, people can contact you through comments or email if they want to. Not everyone who reads your blog maybe from BAPP.

I think it is good to have an overview of their CV, many people have done a great job of giving us some idea of their work in the description and photo area. But I do not think having a formal stage type CV (ie just copied from your paper CV) just as a blog entry is useful.

What I did on my web-site which I use as my professional blog is have a pdf of my CV and a pdf of my Biog. This is so people can download it if they need to. But I do not have it as a page I think it can look as if I am selling myself as a product (which is what we are doing in the performance industry but not everyone reading through blogs and web-sites is in the performing industry). For non-performers seeing a beautiful photo of you and then reading your dress size etc... is unexpected. Please remember that our blogs are completely public. As I said in my last blog (half and hour ago!!!) Think about whether anyone is completely themselves either on-line or in person, we all need each other to shape ourselves somewhat. Like when you ask someone how are you? Very few people really want to know all the details of how you are!

This is looking at the validity of the WEB not just as a way for you to find meaningful information but also how much validity is there in your ability to manage what people think of you (even if there is no-body purposely trying to present you in a bad light, see conversations previously). Part of this module is about you starting to think about who you are. You may feel you are the sum of all your experiences but (for us) are you the sum of all the experiences other people have of you?

more thoughts on WEB 2.0

Commenting on Melissa G blog I wrote:
Some great comments about the practicalities of WEB 2.0 and professional practise. But what about wider implications?

For instance I think avatars are really interesting. The whole idea of people who design themselves quite differently from their physical body or gender. Performers are used to designing themselves physically.  There is a kind of consumerism of image we are all involved with. We come from a very 'beautiful' world as performers. What do you think? Is the platform of 'equality' on the Web effected by this. Have you noticed any techniques you use to edit, sculpt create yourself in print / on the net?

On a superficial level I hate to appear as someone who does not spell well. It takes me ages to write short comments that if I spoke them I would spend much less thinking time on. (If I spelt well I think I would write more often!)

On another level I have found that in fact one starts to have the persona that people create through not knowing you just seeing your work / images and a persona that is created from working directly with you. In fact this two are different and it is important to honour the fact people want / need an image to hang their ideas of you on. This can be as simple as looking the part... dressing like an artist etc...
What do you think?

Wednesday, 6 October 2010


Mark, wrote a comment on my last blog, some of the comment said

"(this) has made me realise that there is till hierarchy because sites like Google control what information is most available to you and they are given vast amounts of money to promote particular companies or pieces if information. In terms of professional practice it has made me aware that I should be much more cautious and also more thorough when looking for information, to make sure I get a balanced view"

Yes, this is really interesting because we have come to feel that things in print are true. Sites like wikipedia are really useful but also can be quite misleading if they are used as a sole source of information. On another note however being aware of the motive (or drive) behind a source of information can allow you to find information in unexpected places. For instance I look for books in on-line libraries but sometimes I only have part of the information I need to find the book. However if I look on Amazon (whose motive is to find it for me so I can buy it) I can type in half bits of information and Amazon finds an assortment of possibilities. Then I can find the book and get all the details and sometimes read a part of it on Amazon then find it in the on-line library of the university or where ever I was looking before.

I come from a school of thought where your feelings and sense are also important in assotaining what is 'true' or 'real'. As a dancer 'knowing' is more than a set of thoughts, I need to interact with environment to find meaning. I am writing about this because I think it is important to have your own personal way of 'knowing'. This course is saying it is not about finding someone else's 'right' answer (out there). As a professional person how are you going to decide when you are doing 'good' work? In my career I have not been able to rely on other people to decide this for me. (I got told to give up dancing on a daily basis at school!!! but I turned out ok) Then this became less about a fight to do the thing I loved and more about how I become the artist I want to be. Then it is not fighting to carve a place for yourself but about see who you are. What is your artistic vision?

During the campus session I told one group that its ok not to know, but to keep going and find yourself in process of finding rather than a process of knowing.

Frogs in a bucket -
Two frogs fell in a bucket of milk. One couldn't see how to get out and slowly sank to the bottom. The other one swam round and round waiting hoping to come to an answer. By the morning that frog's swimming round and round had churned the milk into butter and he was able to hop out of the bucket.
My friend Suzanne told me that story I often tell myself it when I feel like I'm going round in circles.


Sunday, 3 October 2010

BAPP first Campus Session

Campus session was fun. It was nice to meet some people starting the course. We looked at the technologies being used during this course. Throughout you will notice we are looking at ideas from three different perspectives. 1) The tools (technologies), 2) your experiences and ideas, and 3) the experiences and ideas of others. This first part of the module is very much about the tools you will be using (and already use). But we are looking at them in terms of professional practise, what they do to support or be un-supportive to your professional practise and what how you can engage with them to further your learning. We looked at the difference between web 2.0 and web 1.0 and focused on 2.0. The people who attended divided into three small groups and researched ideas about web 2.0 and how it is used and can be used.

There were some important points all the groups raised.

  • The interaction (I am very interested in the idea of Interaction and Transaction these are ideas that Dewey, James and Pierce talk about all of whom I am studying at the moment). The Interaction that web 2.0 encourages.
  • The reliability of information and /or the reliability of the person who is posting information.
  • The appearance of a level playing field but in fact some information on the web is more hidden than other information.
  • The importance of maintaining and actively managing your own identity and your own thinking.

All the presentations were really good. Some people started using citations and quotes these link to the 'experiences and ideas of others' I mentioned above.

Most important at this stage is just to get going using the technologies, starting your blog and visiting other peoples.

It is also important for me to share that learning (for me) is a process of being confused, feeling like I have no idea and then getting a clue!!!! It is not being really sure all the time. I am not saying try to be confused, just that is a part of the process so don't be afraid of not knowing. Before you can learn something new or grow you have to realise you don't know or you have room to grow first. This does entail a certain amount of trust in the guides you have (in this case the advisors). Luckily we are all a bit different so you can get a number of ways to look at something. The big idea is getting you thinking and doing.