On Saturday 3rd November, eleven keen students arrived bright and early in Bletchingley to attend the ART Module 2F course. We were welcomed by Frank Seabright, our ART Tutor and Paul Flavell, Surrey Training Officer.
After a quick pre-course catch up over a welcome hot drink, we made a prompt start on our full day of learning. We alternated between theory sessions, designed to build our understanding of each step of the scheme, and practical sessions in the bell tower to reinforce each stage of learning as we gradually progressed from ringing rounds to plain hunting.
Frank concluded the day by reminding us that “The most critical thing is to put into practice, as soon as you can after the day, your new skills and approach to teaching” and emphasising that “Only thorough practice will you develop your skills and ensure the benefits of the day are brought to fruition”. So please will all ringers, whether experienced or novice try to help those ringers who attended this, or perhaps an earlier ART course, to build their skills over the coming months as we each try to play our part in meeting the needs of new ringers today and change ringing in the future.
Thank you to everyone who was involved in arranging the course and particularly to Ed and Val Muller who kept us provided with refreshments throughout the day.
This ART Module 2 course is now the fifth ART course we have laid on in the Surrey Association since I became Training Officer in 2015, and we are indebted to experienced tutor Frank Seabright from Herefordshire for coming and delivering this course with such aplomb. It is not necessary to have attended Module 1 or be an accredited teacher to attend Module 2. Now that Ringing Remembers learners are coming up to ringing rounds, attending a Module 2 course is very timely to keep those learners interested.
The Module 2 course includes a review of handling and fun exercises including Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Mexican Wave, Bastow, Cloisters etc.These exercises are designed to develop learners’ abilities from handling skills, the ability to listen and hear their own bell and ropesight, etc, to enable them to ring up to plain hunt. As Frank said above, it is essential the teachers practise the skills learned today by taking them back to their own towers.
ART training is now producing results in the Association and whilst we know it isn’t perfect, we are gradually winning some of the critics over. The main emphasis has been on teaching teachers how to teach bell handling. We now have some 20 accredited ART teachers in the Association which has helped with recruitment and training of new ringers, especially with the current Ringing Remembers initiative.
Over 75 people in the Association have been through the Learning the Ropes program, and although not all people have stayed the course, there are certainly new ringers in many of our towers and several of these will be ringing for the Armistice Day celebrations on 11 November. Quite simply if we don’t train new ringers some of our towers will fall silent in the next few years.We are trying to maintain our wonderful hobby and ensure Surrey towers keep ringing and ART is just one tool to help us do this.
Learn how to teach build really good foundation ringing skills in your ringers.