Chairman’s Chatter – February 2014

Chairman’s Chatter is published in the quarterly ART WORKS magazine for ART Members and ITTS Course Delegates.

Brisk start to the New Year

A week before Christmas, Birmingham School of Bell Ringing [BSoBR] contacted me to say they urgently needed an ITTS Module 2 Day Course. BSoBR only uses ITTS Teachers in their Saturday morning teaching sessions. Now they have 3 towers each Saturday to teach between handling and Plain Bob Minor they needed more Teachers to attend a Module 2. Unfortunately there was a problem!

They had no free Saturdays due to all their teaching commitments, could ART run a course on New Year’s Day!? Thus it was that I was up at the crack of dawn on a Bank Holiday setting off for Birmingham. I am glad to report that every single delegate arrived on time with no signs of a hangover in sight!

Paul Lewis joins management team

Paul Lewis, senior lecturer in soil and environmental science at Harper Adams University and long standing lecturer on the Hereford Ringing Course, has recently been co-opted on to ART Management Committee. Paul attended the very first ITTS pilot course in 2009 and is now an ITTS Tutor having run eight Day Courses to date.

Paul is taking on the important new role of Local Organiser Coordinator, developing communications and encouraging teaching initiatives locally. If you have organised an ITTS Day Course in your area, Paul will be in touch with you soon. You will be able to discuss local issues with him and communicate with other people fulfilling a similar role in other areas.

Assessing Mentors

Some areas have selected just one or maybe two of their local Mentors to take the role of Assessing Mentor [External Moderator] and do the Module 1 handling assessments for all local ITTS Delegates. This is an excellent system and helps to ensure continuity of standards locally.

Anyone who is currently a Mentor or anyone who is thinking of becoming a Mentor can find out more by attending a Mentor Development Workshop. Each is an Evening or half day workshop. Keep an eye out for a workshop at or request to hold one in your area.

Whiting Society

The Society publishes a wide range of books about bells and ringing, which are all available from their online shop. For beginners to change ringing, Carry on Counting and Doubles or Quit are particularly relevant to those teaching Learning the Ropes Level 3 – Plain Hunt and Learning the Ropes Levels 4 – Plain Bob Doubles.

Also on the website, you’ll find an interesting “Articles” section, containing a great deal of training material covering subjects from bell handling and very basic change ringing to really advanced stuff. Take the time to explore the site. The Whiting Society is an active group, and runs a lot of practice sessions and courses. If you’re interested, you can contact them via the website.

» Whiting Society on-line shop

Be a local champion

Have you found ITTS useful? Learnt from the Day Courses? Have your learners been supported by the Learning the Ropes scheme?

If so, we need you to be a local champion! Share your experiences of using ITTS and Learning the Ropes with your local ringers and officers. Help us to welcome more ringers nationwide in the schemes.

We are always happy to book in new ITTS Day Courses. If interest exists in your area, please us to get one arranged.

Our numbers are growing!

The numbers of people registered on to the Moodle website went up from in the region of 900 in October 2012 to nearly 1,800 in October 2013. Over 800 of these are new ringers being taught by ITTS Delegates and ART Members.

And, by the end of November 2013 there had been a total of 467 Learning the Ropes certificates awarded to 324 individual ringers.

Are you working with Youth Groups?

Graham Nabb has compiled a massive amount of information for those working with or intending to set up youth groups. ART Members can download this material for free from Moodle or is available on CD for non-Members.

» Browse the ART shop