AT Congress® Berlin 2022

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Event Details

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Belinda Mello

Belinda Mello
New York, USA

Teaching/Learning Challenge: Agency vs Appeasement

Creating an environment that is an inclusive and safe place for learning is essential to our teacher/student dynamics. In this workshop we will experience, using games and discussions, the ways in which appeasement can be one of the most pervasive patterns we address in our lessons and classes. And we will see how choice and inhibition can be instrumental in supporting a sense of agency, countering the need to appease.

The most often misunderstood of the four stereotyped responses to a perception of threat (Fight, Flight, Freeze, Appease ) is to appease –  the focus of this workshop. We may be missing how often teachers and students use appeasement to “keep the peace”. Metabolically costly, appeasement obscures the ability to see all our options, until after the fact. 

In this workshop I will share ways to structure learning environments that consciously aim at leveling hierarchies, engaging students’ capacity to recognize their freedom of choice. Because access to choice is not equally shared, grappling with appeasement can build our empathy for the toll it takes, highlighting the need to teach tenderly, fostering more equity of resources for safety and agency.

About Belinda Mello

Belinda Mello, MFA, is an Alexander Technique and movement specialist in practice since 1989. Based in New York City, she is the founder of the AT Motion Center for Actors, has served on the faculty of Brooklyn College Theater Department, SITI Conservatory, and is currently with The Barrow Group and Terry Knickerbocker Studio. She is a co-designer of the Freedom to ACT Conferences and collaboratively built the core curriculum designed for care partners of people with Parkinson’s Disease for the Poise Project. Belinda Mello is a regular member of the volunteer organizing team of the AT Liberation Project and recently completed a certificate program in Embodied Social Justice. Published in BackStage Online, Theatre, Dance and Performance Training Journal, her blogs focus on wellness, mindfulness and performance.


See also: Belinda Mello – Presenter Detail Page

Wednesday, 24 August 2022
10:30 h - 11:45 h (10.30am-11.45am)
Main Building
Floor: 3.OG (3rd floor)
Room: H 3005

Practical Teaching Skills||AT Games||DEI – Diversity/Equity/Inclusion



Fully Practical