Using Art to Build Trust

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Rachael Pocklington
Parents Program
Contact Rachael Pocklington
404-385-3920
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Summary Sentence:

Dance performers help students build trust.

Full Summary:

What do you get when you combine an acrobatic performing arts company and some rather skeptical Georgia Tech students? A one of a kind experience where students learn to trust in themselves and each other. Recently, the Diavolo dance company (think Cirque du Soleil) visited Georgia Tech’s Ferst Center for the Arts and, while on campus, lent their talents to Dr. Brenda Woods’ GT1000 class. The following are student reflections from this unique experience….

Rachael Pocklington
Communications Officer, Parents Program

What do you get when you combine an acrobatic performing arts company and some rather skeptical Georgia Tech students? A one of a kind experience where students learn to trust in themselves and each other. Recently, the Diavolo dance company (think Cirque du Soleil) visited Georgia Tech’s Ferst Center for the Arts and, while on campus, lent their talents to Dr. Brenda Woods’ GT1000 class. The following are student reflections from this unique experience…

The Diavolo workshop was a great experience in getting to know one another and open up. The warm up exercises that we participated in was a great way to begin the activities because it was a fun way of just getting involved right away. The trust exercises allowed my partner and me to open up to each other verbally and nonverbally. The exercise where one person was the driver and the other was the follower, was a great way of just relaxing and putting your trust in your partner. The exercise was stress relieving because in many ways it shows that there will always be somebody that you know you can trust. The final exercise where one person yelled “Me!” allowed us to demonstrate all of our trust skills that we learned throughout the whole session. It required one to put all their trust into the class and be lifted into the air by dozens of hands. The Diavolo workshop was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience because I have never been pushed to put so much trust into a group of people before, and as a result it had a liberating effect on me.

The Diavolo workshop was such a beneficial asset to our GT 1000 class. This team building experience not only tested everyone’s physical endurance but also created bonds between each set of partners and the class as a whole. The most interesting exercise to observe was the one where one partner, the guide, ran the other partner, the dependent, around the room with the dependent’s eyes closed. Watching all the dependents’ hesitations as their guides led them around the room had one great effect. It was clear to see that after a minute or so of not running into a wall or another person, the dependents began to relax and have more trust in their guides. Dr. B has always told and made us feel that our GT 1000 class is our safe haven and oasis here at Georgia Tech. This experience furthers that feeling. Not only do our peer leaders and Dr. B make us feel comfortable and relaxed but now our fellow classmates do as well. A deeper sense of trust has been created that merely sitting in a classroom cannot create.

Class last Thursday was unlike any other school class I’ve ever had. Being able to work with the two Diavolo performers made me realize how each performance requires so much time and preparation. I greatly enjoyed the team-building activities the performers taught us. At first I thought that walking blindfolded next to someone was no big deal. However, when they told us to start jogging, I have to admit that I was a bit nervous. This activity gave me the opportunity to listen to Hoe’s guidance both verbally and physically. Another activity I greatly enjoyed was when we all circled up and pushed one student around. When my turn came, I thought that some people might drop me, but everything turned out to be fine. Towards the end of the class, I knew I could trust my peers to catch me when I fall and to guide me safely. These activities require trust but result in team confidence. I can’t believe that in the end I allowed everyone to pick me up and move me several feet. Only with the confidence of the Diavolo performers and the trust I had in my classmates could have let me arrive at this point.

PS. Thanks Dr. B for arranging this class activity for us! I had a blast.

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Parent and Family Programs

Categories
Institute and Campus, Student and Faculty
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Keywords
empty nest, parent perspective
Status
  • Created By: Rachael Pocklington
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Dec 2, 2010 - 8:00pm
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 11:11pm