Source: Universal Journal of Educational Research 4(9): 2100-2109
This article examines perceptions of observant dance teachers on aspects related to their professional world. The study included 119 teachers, graduates of the dance department at an academic - religious college of education in Israel. The data was collected through a structured questionnaire developed specifically for the study and through interviews with teachers. The data shows that the predictor for the perception of the contribution of dance lessons to pupils is the interrelations between dance and the inner world. The significance of these interrelations arises, among other things, in the finding that the teachers' choice of instruction of the art of dance allows them to realize themselves and mold a new path in the instruction of dance within a religious worldview, as part of an education system compatible with their own worldview.
In conclusion, the study described in this article is a pioneer study examining the perceptions of religious dance teachers on aspects related to their professional world. One of the most prominent findings of the research is that most of the participants' perceptions are concordant with the universal perceptions of teachers on issues related to teaching and to the motivations for choosing it, as arose in other studies. The uniqueness of the research population both socially and in terms of their discipline is reflected in the fact that they are educating to a unique dance culture, which is adapted to the values of the population of which they are part, and in their work make possible the development of a professional art of dance in the spirit of the Jewish Halacha. Moreover, there is congruence between the objectives of the Religious General Education regarding the instruction of the arts, and the perceptions of the dance teachers, which could reinforce the status of the art of dance as a school subject in these educational frameworks.
Further research comparing the perceptions of the religious dance teachers in Israel with those of secular teachers, and/or from other religions and different countries, could shed further light on the unique and universal aspects related to the professional world of these teachers.