As an instructor, there is a lot more that goes on behind the scenes than most realize. The biggest thing is lesson planning – figuring out what we are going to do in a given class period.

When I start planning, the first thing I do is look at who is enrolled in the class. Most of the time, I know all the ladies in the class and can cater the class to meet them where they are at. I like to be able to think about variations I might use and how to word things as I’m teaching before I’m put on the spot. When I have classes that there are multiple curve balls in (women I don’t yet know) I try to keep it simple, but have options for how to make it more difficult, since I find that modifying to make things harder is easier to do on the fly.

If I’m working on an apparatus class, I look at the students’ cards to see if there are any moves that they haven’t been introduced to or that they are not proficient at. I try to include moves that multiple students need to work on and build sequences using those moves.

For writing a workshop everything changes. I start with a song. I listen to different Spotify stations to try to find a song that speaks to me. Once I hone in on a song I start to visualize while I listen to it. I listen to see if there are any spots that stand out for good spots for specific moves and move out from there. I listen to the song over and over dancing until it feels right. As more moves fit together I continue to build the routine.

Different class types require different amounts of planning time, and the longer I’ve been instructing the better and faster I’ve gotten at it. However, I still need to think ahead and plan out each class I teach. I like being able to modify classes to my students’ needs and meet them where they are at that day.