Successfully Challenging Limitations to Polish Elementary School Students' Dance Talent


Educating is the calling of the soul. Every educator always encourages students to maximize their potential through the teaching and learning process and directed guidance. In reality, teaching and learning activities in remote areas face obstacles. Rizki Amalia, a student of Dance Education at Universitas Negeri Yogyakarta  tried to answer this challenge while participating in the Teaching Campus Program at SDN Puding Besar, Bangka Regency, Bangka Belitung Islands Province.

  "At the end of the assignment, the school asked for my help in the District Elementary School National Student Art Competition Festival for the dance competition category," said Rizki. Rizqi was assigned to be the choreographer and created the dance in a short time, with one week to practice before the competition started.

There were many obstacles in this preparation, one of which was the pressure to train the participating children to have the ability to dance traditional dances. Due to the school's remote location and limited resources, it is tough to find children who have a natural talent for dancing, so the children who will participate in the dance competition have never danced traditionally before. "The lack of space to study local arts in the village is one of the causes of the children's low knowledge of traditional arts in the area," said Rizqi.

Within one week, Rizqi trained the children to be able to perform a dance that she created himself within the limitations of their abilities. Even Rizqi and his teammates are willing to stay at the school for one week to maximize training. Students practice three times a day, morning, afternoon, and evening. The children who participated were very enthusiastic and never complained at all.

The training method provided by Rizqi provides flexibility exercises and teaches basic movements that often appear in Malay dances. Then Rizqi focused on transferring the movements to the children until the dance was over. Finally, the exercises focused on memorizing the movements, adjusting the expression, atmosphere, and compacting the group's movements. The competition was held at SDN 5 Puding Besar in Labu village, 20 minutes from SDN 8 Puding Besar.

Unexpectedly, the SDN 8 Puding Besar team won 1st place in the dance competition branch and had the opportunity to represent the Puding Besar sub-district at the district level. The Principal of SDN 8 Puding Besar, Nuriman, was surprised.  This was the first time in the history of SDN 8 Puding Besar to win 1st place in the dance category and for the first time to represent sub-districts at the district level for the National Student Art Competition Festival.

"This is a memorable and unforgettable experience for me while I was assigned to the Teaching Campus Program," said Rizqi.  This achievement is possible thanks to the joint efforts and the school's support in every way during the preparation. "Despite their limitations, the participating children were able to give the best results and gave significant gifts for me and the Teaching Campus team who worked at SDN 8 Puding Besar," she said. The Teaching Campus team at this school are M. Shafly F and Rizqi Amalia from Universitas Negeri Yogyakarta, Ade Annisa, Rizma Zuhriana, Mutiara Kasih and Nabila Amalia from Universitas Ahmad Dahlan Yogyakarta and Riza Rianti from Universitas Sarjana Wiyata Tamansiswa Yogyakarta. This is one of UNY's efforts in the sustainable development agenda in quality education and partnerships. (Dedy, Tj. Lak)

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