ASU Prep - Read all about it!
March 2020 was a hit for all of us in this sport and across the whole world. ASU Prep’s plans to attend and compete in their first ever WGI Championships in Dayton, Ohio was thwarted. Hearts were broken, both students and staff alike. But we had hope. Many of us wondered how long the quarantine would last. Surely not through fall. Next year’s season would be back to normal, wouldn’t it? Unfortunately, the virus persisted, and as the winter season audition dates for the 2021 season fast approached, quarantine still had no end in sight. With this looming over us, many guard programs put their heads together to figure out a way to give their students some sort of winter experience, even if it turned out to be far from the norm. ASU Prep did just that.
The digital tools used to bring families together during the quarantine proved a lifeline for virtual teaching. ASU set out to optimize rehearsals. Simple things like longevity of cellphone battery life, stable Wi-Fi connections, scorching temperatures that overheated devices, and ensuring students had access to wide open, safe spaces to spin became the major daily combatants.
Despite these issues, ASU started strong. Teaching choreography virtually came with its own set of challenges. Welcoming students’ questions, repetition, and over explaining became the remedy. Staff set up video assignments for the students to complete on google classroom so we could break down each student’s choreography and basics to ensure their understanding. Soon, through the combined efforts of trusting students and their staff, the choreography was set.
In the background, staff designed the show and staged using ketchup packets as the students and moving them around over a table meant to act as the floor. Once the big moments were set, we upgraded our tools to Pyware and shared the finished product with the guard members, who were able to learn their spots, forms, and transitions to the music from their own homes.
With the ability to design our own newspaper articles, we took the opportunity to celebrate one of our amazing staff members Mrs. Parris Sheets. She has been a huge reason why this program has grown from those that have been with us at ASU Prep since Kinder. She has worked with ASU Prep colorguard for thirteen years. We surprised her by creating an article highlighting her as an author. She has written her first book, Warden’s Reign, and her second book, Children of the Volcano, hit the shelves on April 5th