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  1. #11
    V.I.P. PracticalDancer's Avatar
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    Yes, everything everyone else said, and an analogy to go with it:

    We may all remember a particular teacher fondly. I loved my second grade teacher; but, we all knew I had to move to third grade. Schools for "regular education" are deliberately structured so that students follow a progressing curriculum an move from one teacher (who specializes in a grade or topic) to the next. Sometimes we form lasting bonds, but those bonds need to flex with our needs.

    In some cases, we may become friends with those teachers as we grow, and then maintaining the friendship (in or out of the dance is the priority).

    In some cases, the teacher becomes more of a mentor, offering targeted coaching on a particular topic until the student has master it (and moves on). Does your teacher have something beyond movement to offer? Expertise on stage dynamics, audience engagement, costuming, history, etc.? If so, a few private sessions or ongoing arrangements for feedback could help.

    And, in some cases, the well runs dry and you have learned all you can. If there is no friendship, there still should be respect. A reference in a bio, referrals of students, a card or small gift on your "danciversary" -- you make the call on the degree of honor, but extend honor nonetheless.

    And, since you will keep growing and discovering new things to learn (or the need to relearn old ones), always maintain professionalism and never sever the relationship.

    Anala

  2. #12
    Member seona's Avatar
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    I've been there! I love my original teacher, she brought bdance to my little town and for that I love her! ... But I felt I wanted to learn more and try different styles, I just felt it wasn't challenging enough anymore.
    I felt I was being dis-loyal, crazy I know, but that's because I guess we were all a close group ( class and teacher). Also she had been so good to me, when I finally plucked up the courage to tell her, she totally understood, I told her my feelings and she gave me a hug! She said she was happy for me but also sad that she may loose me to other classes. Honesty is defiently the best policy! And I guess, like others have pointed out, it can all depend on your relationship with your teacher.

  3. #13
    Senior Member goddessyasaman's Avatar
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    I agree with Shanazel & Imeera, I have been teaching belly dance for 5 years and I would like the truth as well, I'm sure she would understand if you told her you are going the way of egyptian style and that you want to follow in that direction so for this part of your belly dance training you want to take some lessons from a egyptian style teacher and see how it goes, I'm sure she would understand. It's up to you if you want to say anything about you can only handle paying one teacher at a time or not. I think it will be fine either way you do it, don't feel bad you have to do whats best for your training as well

  4. #14
    Member RayaDancer's Avatar
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    all this advice has been really helpful! i do like the idea of the flowers especially!
    you know, i'm not really sure how she would take the news of me leaving. i want to say that she would understand; it's not like im her first or last student after all. but every once in a while, in the past when i would ask her for advice, she would tell me, "oh, i dont know, why dont you go ask -------?", and she would name the other teacher that i took some workshops with. and i wasn't sure how to take those comments. being catty or not? i couldnt tell. i think that's why im having a hard time figuering out how to tell her. im kind of anticipating feeling....uncomfortable.

  5. #15
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RayaDancer View Post
    ... every once in a while, in the past when i would ask her for advice, she would tell me, "oh, i dont know, why dont you go ask -------?", and she would name the other teacher that i took some workshops with. and i wasn't sure how to take those comments. being catty or not? i couldnt tell. i think that's why im having a hard time figuering out how to tell her. im kind of anticipating feeling....uncomfortable.
    The way I see it, you can put your suspicions aside and choose to think well of her. It's a bit Pollyanna-ish, but it's great for avoiding drama and negative energy that you don't want to get involved in - just let it sail right over your head.

    Treat her as if she has been nice. If she hasn't, and did make catty remarks, or is going to react badly to your leaving, well that's her problem, not yours.

  6. #16
    Member Shakti's Avatar
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    Hi
    I would say if you choose the direct route press your intrest on the style aspect and tell her you have decided to study and explore Egyptian style. Thank her for being a part of your dance journey , the flowers idea would probably excite her to the point of quickly forgiving any hard feelings.

    Be sure to still attend her events, this way you can still keep in touch.

  7. #17
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    I teach beginner classes and Am Cab classes. I tell my students that if they want to learn anything other than Am Cab, they will need to find another instructor. What they learn with me are the basic moves, how to combine them, how to layer them, how to choreograph and how to perform. Changing to a different style is up to them. I love my students and I do ask that they keep in touch. Many don't, and I understand that I was just a dance teacher. Some I have run into and they remembered me and excitedly said hello, but it did not go beyond that. It is great when a student actually becomes a good friend, but as a teacher, that is not an expectation. If you really like her, tell her how much you like her, tell her if you want to keep in touch, and tell her that you really want to study with (insert name here). Perhaps you may want to "drop in" on your present (former) instructor's class during or after classes with the other teacher.

  8. #18
    AFK Moderator ~Diana~'s Avatar
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    You don't need to break up with your teacher. Any good and wise teacher will want you to move on and increase your learning from another. If she has issues with you doing so then she is not a good teacher at the fundamental level.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    1. Beginning dancer. Knows nothing.
    2. Intermediate dancer. Knows everything. Too good to dance with beginners.
    3. Hotshot dancer. Too good to dance with anyone.
    4. Advanced dancer. Dances everything. Especially with beginners
    .
    ~ Attributed to Dick Crum, a folk dance teacher ~

  9. #19
    Senior Member LadyLoba's Avatar
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    If it's just a matter of trying a different style, she shouldn't be at all insulted or hurt. You're still saying you like her, appreciate and use what she taught you, and that she is a good teacher.

    I'm not a teacher, but if I were to teach something in my professional field of language arts, it would be the basics of writing plus a few forms of writing...poetry not being one of them. If someone took a basic writing or introduction to fiction workshop from me and realized they wanted to learn poetry...I would expect that person to take classes or workshops from a poet and not from me, as I cannot even write a decent poem myself.

    I've had similar things in school with languages....I was enrolled in Spanish and French and decided to drop French in favor of Spanish....and the French teacher was not at all upset. They're usually happy to hear someone likes their field so much that they decided to go far enough in to it to focus like that. Your teacher would probably be happy to realize you're so dedicated.

    Since your teacher is an AmCab teacher, I'm sure she'd expect someone who wanted to focus on Egyptian Belly Dance to study from an Egyptian style belly dance teacher.

    In addition to all the other good advice above...it might also be nice to send anyone who expresses interest in starting belly dance or focusing on AmCab her way...and have them tell her you recommended her.

  10. #20
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    I agree with many of the sentiments on here- just be honest. At some point a student "outgrows" their teacher or needs a different kind of instruction and any quality teacher will not only know this, but expect it.

    I suggest leaving her a nice, thoughtful card after you "break-up" letting her know how much you appreciate her

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