Dear Teacher,

In the last year I have been trying to take as many classes in different exercises as I can afford, and 2015 is the year for even more of this, including as many workshops as I can get.

I have been doing hooping, yoga, fire dancing/poi and of course belly dancing over the course of 2014 and being a newbie student again has helped me a lot in my teaching, so I thought I’d do a quick little letter to teachers everywhere, from a student’s perspective.

Top R: Me in September Bottom R: Me in December I still suck at it, but small improvements are still improvements!

Top L: Me in September
Bottom L: Me in December
I still suck at it, but small improvements are still improvements!

Dear Teachers,

I love your teaching, or I wouldn’t be in your classes, so please don’t get mad when I tell you what has been bothering me. Sometimes I just don’t like what we’re doing and it doesn’t gel with me (physically or otherwise!) Don’t take this personally.

Please explain a new sequence to me in different ways. Everybody learns differently (a blog post on this soon!) – sometimes I am not sure which learning method will work for me at the time, so try them all!

No, we are not even a little bored of you repeating yourself. Please keep doing that so that I can finally get that incredibly tough sequence into my head! I know you’re bored because you’ve learnt it and now have to repeat it over and over, but we’ll let you know when we’re bored too.

Ask me if I am doing alright! I’d love to give you feedback or ask you a question, but sometimes I’m too shy to ask in case my question comes across as a stupid one.

It’s so easy for me to forget all the important things I need to be doing with my posture and my feet, hands, hips, waist, chest, head, neck, shoulders, knees and thighs that sometimes one of them will slip my mind. A gentle reminder of where I need to be helps wonders and it keeps me focussed on what I am doing. I don’t mind being singled out.

Occasionally I have an off day and nothing wants to stick. Please just ignore me when that happens – I’ll be better the next time!

I’d love to chat to you about setting goals for myself. Telling myself I want to learn X is one thing (and easy to ignore!) but telling my teacher is a whole new world and means I might actually have to commit to it!

And finally, thank you for all the hard work that you put into your classes. I love it!


Your dedicated but mostly useless student.



  1. It is good to hear that you are NOT bored with the repetition, that is always my greatest fear when teaching classes. The brand new student is always the hardest to teach for. Their body stiffens at the thought of doing foreign movements. In time they learn that they can do one move and then another, and another. After years of training it can be hard to not bore them – even an overly complex step that takes a while to learn can end in frustration. Still, I have found that even after 13 years with this dance repetition of a few combos to a good beat is FAR more enjoyable than pounding away on a treadmill!

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