Alexander in Education SI group Report April 2018
The Alexander in Education website is now ‘live’: www.alexanderineducation.co.uk.
I would like to thank everyone involved in the planning of this hugely important project. Thanks to all from the early days of the Special Interest group meetings at Hite, with many teachers being involved in the consultation process for the material and approach to the website. Huge thanks, in particular to Ilia and the STAT office for keeping faith with this project, despite the many problems and setbacks during the process.
Thanks to all those who have provided information about how the work is taught in their schools or colleges. Special thanks go to the main website team, Esther Miltiadous, Henry Fagg, Julia Cowper and Julia Outlaw for the huge amount of work towards this project. It has been incredibly heartening to be part of an Alexander team where the means whereby has been at the heart of the process, which results in great patience, positivity and kindness and all importantly the keeping of a sense of humour throughout. It is worth remembering that all the work of the special interest groups goes along side people’s busy lives, work schedules, families and the many ups and downs of being human. I am so grateful to have had such an amazing team to work with.
The aim of the website is to have a collective face for Alexander in Education work for the public and schools. This educational profile shows the potential of Alexander work in primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities. Institutions can now see how wide the scope of the work is and just how many schools, universities, colleges and summer schools are beginning to have Alexander courses as part of their curriculum. There is now an extensive international list of where the work is taught by members of STAT and the Affiliated Societies. The British list has hyperlinks to as many schools and colleges that AT teachers have provided information for and we are beginning to be able to make links for some of the International colleges. Please let us know if we have missed anything out. Please feel free to provide more pictures or information that you have permission for. It is only through people letting us know where the work is taught that this impressive list is growing.
We aim to add a history of the work in schools and colleges and a page on Performing arts and sports. More variety of pictures will be added in due course; we ask everyone to be patient with this, as we do want to show as many teachers and places as possible, variety is slow as a lot of work goes into getting permissions for pictures and quotes and inspiring people to send in information.
It is all important to remember that websites, like gardens, need a lot of work in preparation but are ongoing work. We welcome all positive and helpful feedback about this new satellite website. Our aim is to send a link to the website, not only to all the institutions where the work is taught, but also to where it is not taught, to encourage those establishments to discover just how much the Alexander Technique is already part of the British educational scene and is there to bridge the gap between Health and Learning. In addition, we hope to show that the work is very well received and appreciated by schools and colleges, teachers and students alike and very much worth including in the resources available for young people’s education.
We hope this will inspire you to link this website to your website, to send it to schools where they might not yet have Alexander teachers and influence them to go ahead and at least have a workshop. As an Alexander teacher recently said to me: “It can sometimes seem like telling people about something they have never heard of and don’t yet want". We hope this website will be the start of a cultural change and a trend in the educational world, even if a small beginning, so we can all balance our heads up high, have our feet on the ground and feel confident in our message that Alexander skills are a good thing and fundamental to wellbeing, health and ‘learning how to learn’. Please share the website on social media if you can: Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Recent Schools and colleges having inset days or workshops are: Leicestershire Schools/Norwich Music services/Sussex Music services/ Bromley Schools/ Mill Hill School. Our aim of course is to introduce the work to as many schools and colleges as possible and begin to influence State Education as well as private schools, in all departments as well as the Performing Arts. Please let us know about any news to add to the website as it all helps to encourage schools to appreciate that the work is useful.
Sports Film: The Alexander in Sports film is in the process of being made and the rushes look absolutely fantastic. We look forward to that being another resource for Alexander teachers.
Forum: We had a very successful meeting at LCATT school for the Forum last year and talks on where the work is taking place. A wonderful sharing of resources and ideas and we aim to have another meeting very soon. Thank you to the Forum team: Polly Waterfield, Andy Smith, Catherine Fleming and Esther Miltiadous.
The Developing Self: We had a very useful meeting last year between STAT, The Charity for the FM Alexander Technique and the Alexander in Education group. It was decided that Sue Merry, Judith Kleinman and Esther Miltiadous would create The Developing Self, now a successful website and postgraduate training course for Alexander teachers wanting to take the work into primary, secondary and tertiary settings. There have already been two very successful trainings in London. The courses provide handbooks, many resources, curricula and helpful ideas for teachers to feel confident taking the work into schools. Please take a look at the www.thedevelopingself.org.uk,Facebook/Pinterest/Instagram
An Alexander in Education Facebook page and the Alexander in Education Forum Facebook pages continue to go well and be useful growing resources thanks to Esther Miltiadous. Huge thanks to Hilary King for creating an excellent Alexander Technique Pinterest page; we encourage everyone to have a look at the many useful pictures on it. There is also an Alexander in Education Instagram page, thanks to Julia Cowper.
Research:The beginning of some research building in the sector has begun in Ireland on ‘chairs in primary schools’ and there is an aim to have a similar project begin in North London soon, with Jeremy Cassidy and Esther Miltiadous.
Future aims are: Education and Alexander Conference in 2020. More films and talks about the work in education. Going to educational exhibitions and conferences to flag up the work. Collaborations with the ‘Poise project’ for work in education. Building resources and curricula and the sharing of information in this world. Sending news of the work to the Congress in Chicago.
Robert Rickover podcasts: Recent educational podcasts on primary and tertiary work have been made by Esther Miltiadous and Peter Buckoke, in conversation with Robert Rickover: