How Did I Earn My Certification to Teach Middle Eastern (belly) Dance?

In the Spring of 2008 I celebrated 20 years of teaching continuous weekly belly dance classes. To mark this professional career milestone I applied for teaching certification by the National Association for Teacher Certification in Middle Eastern Dance.

Their Review Board studied the teaching material I had developed, including a video demonstrating my performance abilities, teaching methodology and student development, before awarding me the certification.

This type of certification differs greatly from the "weekend workshop certification" programs that have become popular. The NATCMED certification is based on real results evident from:

It was gratifying to me to pass this review and become one of the few such certified teachers of Middle Eastern Dance in the country.

Comments from judges on the Review Board:

"Your personal performance style is very authentic and would be classified as (what I know to be) “Classical Egyptian”.... This was by far my favorite and the most impressive. It made me very happy to see the understated elegance in your expression and performance of Raks Sharqi. I totally loved your solo and wish I could have been there to see it live. It was clean, crisp and right on."

"All of your students exhibited good stage presence and I felt they had a nice grasp of stage dynamics as well.... After reviewing your application and DVD, I personally feel you are more than qualified to hold teacher certification."

"Your portfolio is highly impressive and your dancing and demeanor are professional. I am recommending that you be certified. Congratulations! Between the DVD and the written information you sent, you demonstrate a great deal of knowledge of Middle Eastern Dance in its various forms. From Raks Sharqi to Tribal Fusion to zills, veils, sword and cane it is obvious that you know your material very well and that you have an excellent ability to communicate this to your students."

"I was impressed by the detail in your teaching syllabus. It was clear cut, easy to follow and quite balanced in levels of difficulty for your students. I was also happy to see a "studio policy" sheet as well as student/class rules. The sign of a good teacher and business woman is a set of rules and policies. Your paperwork certainly covers everything necessary for a teacher to run the business as well as teach."