Tag Archives: arts ed

Choreoloop

Name of the application: Choreoloop

Cost: Free!

About the app: the app is created for dance makers and is the perfect tool to loop music excerpts. Choreographers can custom-create a loop anywhere in a song, and practice their movement sequence. The app is also perfect for musicians that wish to practice a song excerpt.

Possible classroom applications: the app is perfect for rehearsing freshly taught movement phrases. Young dancers often learn through repetition and Choreoloop is a great way to practice a sequence without having to find a starting point in the track time and time again.

Pros: The app is easy to use and helps public school dance educators save valuable time during sessions. It’s the ultimate set-it-and-forget-it during any type of movement rehearsals.

Cons: The app works seamlessly with your iTunes library, but unfortunately can’t be used with other music apps like Spotify. Also, the iTunes search engine cannot be used through this app. Graphics look grainy when used on larger iPad screens.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5

Passe-Partout, a NYCB app

Name of the application: Passe-Partout

About the app:
Passe-Partout is a pretty straight-forward app designed specifically for iPads. Five complementing dance solo’s and duets are layered with one another by the user, building on the notion of choreographing a dance. The choreography is by Justin Peck, who many people know as a soloist and Resident Choreographer of New York City Ballet. The app is $0.99, and is designed by 2wice Arts Foundation.

Possible classroom applications:
The Passe-Partout app is great to use as part of units that focus on contemporary ballet, male ballet dancers, New York City Ballet, or elementary choreographic devices like unison, canon, or mirroring movement. The app can also be used in a unit based on the work of Justin Peck. This is a hot-topic since he just had his theatrical release of his dance documentary film Ballet 422.

Pros:
The app is a wonderful tool that highlights men-in-dance. In modern-day society this is rather important, especially in low-income areas like Hunts Point where I currently teach. Passe-Partout is perfect to use to illustrate choreographic devices on the smart-board, but make sure to only tap one of the colored tabs to make sure only one layer of the dance is showing.

Cons:
I initially had high hopes for this application, but was rather disappointed with the product. Besides the beautiful dancing, and choreography by Justin Peck, there’s not much to it. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the many layers the app offers, and can make students feel overwhelmed. It’s also not usable on smaller devices. The buttons are too close to one another, even for small children’s fingers.  Additionally, while creating the 2-dimensional dance, the user can’t pause the composition. Worst of all, the top bar that generally indicates time and battery power is invisible while in the app. When on older iPad models, the app also crashes and freezes. Not good when you’re in the middle of a 40-minute lesson!

Rating:
1 out of 5 (A two thumbs down… A rotten tomato… A Vaudeville hook yanking Peck off the stage!)

Fifth Wall: an App With a Myriad of Applications

Name of the application: Fifth Wall

About the app:
Fifth Wall is an app designed specifically for iPads that explores possible connections between choreography and technology. The app is a platform in which four to five squares, that feature a “trapped dancer,” can be mixed. There are three basic ways to combine the screens from which users then can rearrange new compositions. Fifth Wall was produced by 2wice Arts Foundation in 2012, and costs $0.99 .

Possible classroom applications:
I used Fifth Wall during a unit that focus on Laban concepts of space. Many students found the app fun! That said, Fifth Wall will hopefully draw the class into the academically drier concepts of Laban Movement Analysis. The app can also be applied to introduce movement devising. I have used this app, asking students to create a movement phrase on the floor based on the dance offered in the app. The assignment was successful, but feel this mainly happened because students were proficient in devising movement.

Pros:
The app fun to use, and will easily pull in your students. It’s a great way to trick your class into devising movement, even when they’re new to this.

Cons:
Fifth Wall is hard to use on smaller devices, and in order for assignments to stay student-centered, you need a few devices to make it work. Since the app is $0.99, it’s difficult to ask students to download the app, and spend their money. Not to mention, if they have smart phones, their parents or caretakers will most likely will have to pay. Moreover, creating compositions is extremely difficult on smaller devices, since you have to tap outside of the boxes to see the menu bar. This also has proven to be problematic on the iPad for elementary school students with small motor skill challenges.

Rating:
2.5 out of 5

Ballet Index- one of many language tools for dance.

Name of Application: Ballet Index

Cost: 99 Cents

Pros: Gives both the literal translation of ballet vocabulary and also what it refers to in terms of ballet class and terminology. Gives phonetic pronunciations.

Cons: Not many photos of what things look like, though entries like ballerina have cheesy photos of a “ballerina.”

I use this app for my own knowledge of how to exactly translate and spell terms in ballet and in other styles of dance as we use ballet vocabulary throughout many dance forms. I use these terms with my pre-K students and my Middle School students. Using terms based in the French language is helpful at my job because many of my students are bi-lingual in French and English or are English Language Learners. This allows us to discuss cross-cultural use of language and other uses for their mother tongue.

I recommend this App, it is a clear interface and very well laid out and very clear. However, I think that the free ballet dictionary that is available through the American Ballet Theater, (http://www.abt.org/education/dictionary/), is a bit more comprehensive and clear. This website would be more useable by students on their own for defining and spelling ballet vocabulary because of its accessibility on the computer as well as the fact that it is free. Ballet Index is only 99 cents, but not all students have their own iPad or iPhone access or want to/can afford to buy an app for dance class (students would also need parental permission to buy their own version of applications).

Number of Stars * * * (3/5 stars)

Blackboard Mobile

Cost: Free for basic access, $1.99 for full use.

Pros: Easily access assignments, grades, and updates for all courses. Favorites button.

Cons: Log in every time you open, mixed between platforms.

I have been using the Blackboard Mobile App on my iPad, and iPhone regularly since January 30, 2015. I use it for easy access to my course work and assignments on the go. I am often on the go and this app is much better and more organized than going to the Blackboard site on my mobile devices.

This application allows me to check my assignments, course updates, grades, and course documents on the go. It allows me to read important assignments when I am out and about, as well as having full access to Blackboard without using my web browser all the time. The favorites feature is key for me; I can keep favorites for tabs I often visit within my Blackboard site. This feature is also good for keeping track of assignments: I can pick my favorites to be assignments due that week, or upcoming soon!

Number of Stars: 4 stars/5 stars (* * * * )

Spotlight on ArtsEdTech & Jessica Wilt

On this #TechTuesday, we celebrate Jessica Wilt, an innovator in the arts, technology, and community building!

Jessica.Wilt

Jessica is a dancer, arts education advocate, and the founder of ArtsEdTechNYC, “a group for artists and performing artists, educators in K-12 and higher ed, teaching artists, arts & culture or recreational organizations, technology enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and anyone interested in the intersection of the arts with education and technology.”

Through monthly #ArtsEdTech Tuesday gatherings (the first Tuesday of each month at the Centre for Social Innovation) and #ArtsEdTech Thursdays (a moderated panel series at Apple SoHo), ArtsEdTechNYC has been cultivating a community of forward-thinking arts educators to spark conversation, share ideas, and help nurture the growing connections between the arts and technology.

In her recent feature in the New Learning Times, Jessica discussed her vision for the group: “I launched ArtsEdTechNYC a year ago as a platform for people to network, exchange ideas and learn from others who are using technology in successful, meaningful ways with arts education being the anchor. I continue to be inspired by the connections that are being made, the stories that are being shared, and hope the future of ArtsEdTech becomes a virtual platform for those in the arts, education, and tech fields to collaborate and learn from each other, especially teaching best practices and professional development modeling.”

We applaud Jessica for her work within the New York City arts community and encourage all of you to join the ArtsEdTech Meetup Group for up-to-date information on their latest events.

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Jessica Wilt can be found on the web at www.jessicawilt.com and @JessicaLWilt

ArtsEdTech NYC can be found at www.artsedtechnyc.com,  @ArtsEdTechNYCFacebook, and their Meetup Group

All Dancers Need the KineScribe App

I will admit, as many times as I have looked at the dance symbols and notations for dance, I sometimes still have a tendency to forget or get some confused. The KineScribe app is able to upload all relevant dance symbol notations at any time, which is great and very necessary for students. This app is a great on-hand device for both teaching and choreographing. You can show your students the charts as well as create new ones and choreograph different paths of movements and tasks.