M1: 30 Apr 2016 - Shipley

We all make mistakes.

For one of our newer band members, hers was to choose our Ringing Master as her guinea pig to practise her not yet fully acquired skills of ‘how to teach someone to ring’ on.

In that fleeting second that she saw the sally career across the gap towards her she learned two valuable lessons: 1) it really isn’t a good idea to stop pulling the backstroke with your wrists stiff and hands level with your waist & 2) never trust a learner – especially when they are really very experienced!

There were 7 of our band who took part in the ART training course – Teaching Bell Handling. We voluntarily signed up for a whole day looking at the right and wrong ways to handle a bell and a variety of ways to help people get it right and so progress.

Pip Penney herself was despatched for the session, at which we were joined by two ringers from Chichester. The day was split between theoretical discussion backed by a powerpoint presentation and practical application (and a convivial pub lunch).

Starting at the very basics, we worked our way steadily through from first touching a rope to ringing unaided, alternating between our village hall ‘theory’ venue and upstairs ringing chamber.

It was a fun day but surprisingly tiring because of the amount of information to take in. The whole session is backed up by notes to help keep you on the straight and narrow if the memory proves less than reliable.

For those of us who have been teaching people to ring for a while it was an opportunity to learn a few new ideas to back up our existing methods and get confirmation we had the right approach.

For our newer ringers - signed up for the course to understand the teaching techniques ready for our proposed week-long summer activity session for youngsters during the school holiday – it was an opportunity to try the techniques themselves and to understand why we nag them if their own handling starts looking a bit lazy. Being on the receiving end of a learner’s mistakes soon showed them what problems can emerge and learning how to coach people to put them right also gave them some tips for their own handling improvement..

An entertaining and rewarding day which has given plenty of food for thought. Now all we need is our summer school learners.

Sue Meyer

Course Tutor: Pip Penney

Teaching Bell Handling

Practical advice for teachers, right from the first lesson.

» Find out more about Module 1