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Anthropology professor instructs popular tap-dancing class

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first_imgA world-renowned expert on human parenting and infancy with more than 130 published articles in medical, anthropology and psychology journals, professor of anthropology James McKenna boasts a special talent: tap dancing.McKenna, director of Notre Dame’s Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory, is a leading expert on “co-sleeping,” which involves conducting research on the benefits of mother and infant pairs sharing a bed together. However, when he is not knee-deep in his research, McKenna also teaches the Irish American tap class.“I tap danced pretty much all my life in one form or another,” McKenna said. “I started when I was two or three years old watching a Fred Astaire film in black and white in Boston.”McKenna said when he saw Fred Astaire dancing on the screen, his two-year old self ran to the two-foot wide hard wood space between the living room carpet and dining room carpet, looked at the television and “started tap dancing with perfect beats and rhythms and rolls.”“I just could do it,” he said. “I could always tap dance to any music that has a beat. I don’t know why, but it’s been a great joy and a wonderful thing to do. It’s like playing drums with your feet.”After this talent surfaced, McKenna said he pursued it further by taking more formal dance lessons. He taught tap for five years at Pomona College until he was recruited to be a faculty member at Notre Dame. When he arrived in the fall of 1997, McKenna said, he discovered the University did not have a dance department, so he worked on starting a tap class. After a year of preparation, McKenna taught his first tap class in the fall of 1998.Senior Allison Griffith, a current student in McKenna’s Irish American tap class, said she and her friends planned to take the class together. With majors in English and American studies, Griffith said she thought there was no better time than her senior year to try something new.“It is a blast,” she said. “At least for my friends and I, it’s what we look forward to for most of the week.”Initially unsure of what to expect when enrolling in the class, Griffith said she now knows how much time and practice goes into a tap dancing routine.“My expectation before was that it would be a class that people kind of trickled in and out of, and maybe they were just taking it for fun,” she said. “What I’m realizing is that tap is definitely a really difficult skill, and it takes a lot of time and practice to get down.”Previous students have written to McKenna saying they performed their tap dancing routine at their wedding reception with friends who were also in the class, he said. He said he believes the class remains meaningful for the students that take it.“I think Notre Dame students are usually very self-critical,” McKenna said. “There are very few classes where students are able to be non-judgemental of themselves, and to relax and be who they are without the kind of strain and struggles that all of us go through when you care about doing well.”The class has proven a less-traditional, yet still learning-focused environment, Griffith said. McKenna tells his students from the start that they will make mistakes, she said, but that it is okay because they are learning a completely new skill.“A lot of times at Notre Dame, we’re so fixated on making sure we do everything exactly right,” Griffith said. “A lot of us are afraid to make mistakes, and a lot of us are used to not failing — especially in a class setting. It’s very rare to have something to work towards that’s not a paper or an exam. We’re working towards a performance, and that’s really fun.”Griffith said everyone should consider taking the class, regardless of their dancing background.“I had not danced since like first grade,” she said. “Absolutely still take it. Probably a majority of the people in the class had never danced before, or did when they were really little.”A transformation occurs once students put on their tap shoes for the first time, McKenna said, and students should not be afraid to sign up for the class.“It is such a joyful exercise,” he said. “All your troubles blow out Washington Hall windows. It’s done in a very easy, relaxed manner. I have not had one single person — of all the people that have taken this class — that couldn’t do just fine.”The class will present its end-of-the-year recital Tuesday around 8 p.m. in South Dining Hall, McKenna said. It is free to students, and the class performs about six numbers.“It’s very raucous and joyful and really fun,” McKenna said. “These are students that never really saw a pair of tap shoes. I think they’ve all surprised themselves about how much they really learned.”McKenna said he thinks the class is so popular among seniors because they take it for no other reason than their personal satisfaction and joy in tap dancing as an activity.“It really becomes this really absolutely joyful, no-holds-barred experience for the kids, and they let themselves go in there,” he said. “It is one of their truly joyful, restful, self-assuring spaces at the University.”Tags: anthropology, Dance, Irish American tap class, McKenna, recital, tap dancinglast_img read more

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Merokeety Leopard Print Sweater Dress Wins Cozy Fall Fashion

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first_imgUs Weekly has affiliate partnerships so we may receive compensation for some links to products and services.There’s a fashion myth that dresses can only be worn when it’s warm out. Well, we’re not afraid of breaking the rules — and just so happen to be completely obsessed with wearing dresses year-round. Why? They’re the foundation of the easiest outfits — all you have to do is choose which dress you want to wear! Once that’s out of the way, selecting complementary shoes and accessories is a piece of cake.- Advertisement – This sweater dress is made from a super soft knit that’s bound to keep you toasty. If it’s particularly cold outside, you can throw on a pair of tights or even leggings to keep your legs covered. This dress will look adorable with any pair of knee-high or thigh-high boots. We would choose a black pair, but brown boots would work just as well.This dress fits slightly on the loose side, which makes it incredibly relaxed. It essentially feels like wearing an oversized sweater — and what’s better than that? It has a large leopard-print design that’s totally trendy. Leopard is everywhere right now, so you’ll look like an Instagram influencer in this flirty frock!MEROKEETY Women's Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater DressMEROKEETY Women’s Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater Dress AmazonSee it!- Advertisement – Now that we’re in the thick of fall and quickly approaching winter, we’re shifting our focus to sweater dresses. They’re comfortable, cozy and keep Us warm all day long. When they’re as cute as this option from MEROKEETY, it’s only natural to click “Add to Cart” immediately!MEROKEETY Women's Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater DressMEROKEETY Women’s Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater Dress AmazonSee it!Get the MEROKEETY Women’s Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater Dress for prices starting at just $25, available at Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, November 5, 2020, but are subject to change.- Advertisement – Get the MEROKEETY Women’s Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater Dress for prices starting at just $25, available at Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, November 5, 2020, but are subject to change.There are currently four different colors available, all of which feature the leopard-print motif: beige, black, brown and grey. The size of the print may vary depending on the shade that you select, but they’re all just as adorable as the next! Every single version of this dress is a success, and we can’t wait to see it hanging in our closets.See it: Get the MEROKEETY Women’s Leopard Knit Pullover Sweater Dress for prices starting at just $25, available at Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, November 5, 2020, but are subject to change.Not what you’re looking for? Check out more styles from MEROKEETY and shop all clothing, shoes and jewelry available at Amazon! Don’t forget to check out all of Amazon’s Daily Deals here!Check out more of our picks and deals here!This post is brought to you by Us Weekly’s Shop With Us team. The Shop With Us team aims to highlight products and services our readers might find interesting and useful, such as face masks, self tanners, Lululemon-style leggings and all the best gifts for everyone in your life. Product and service selection, however, is in no way intended to constitute an endorsement by either Us Weekly or of any celebrity mentioned in the post.The Shop With Us team may receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. In addition, Us Weekly receives compensation from the manufacturer of the products we write about when you click on a link and then purchase the product featured in an article. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product or service is featured or recommended. Shop With Us operates independently from advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback at [email protected] Happy shopping! – Advertisement –last_img read more

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A house in Brisbane sold for $151,000 over the weekend

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first_imgAt least it’s dry. All you need is a sympathetic renovation. Back yard.The price paid over the weekend was $254,000 less than the median house price in the Rocklea area, where 44 houses sold in the past 12 months and prices rose 5.2 per cent in the past year.Agents Matt Holloway and Geoff Sellars of Ray White Annerley had marketed the home as a fixer-upper in a suburb that was “fast becoming one of Brisbane’s most affordable suburbs within 10kms of the CBD”. 8 Darnley Street, Rocklea Qld 4106NO, that’s not a typo – a two bedroom house inside the 10km ring from the CBD has sold for a ridiculous $151,000 over the weekend.The house at 8 Darnley Street, Rocklea – which sold at auction – admittedly needs some serious elbow grease to get it up to scratch.But even if the new owner spent as much on the renovation as they paid for the property, that would still mean landing a house for $302,000 – a rare feat in the current market. Front yard. Upstairs veranda.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus22 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market22 hours ago I take it back, this kitchen has to go.“It may not look like much now but think of what it can be with a bit of effort and imagination,” was how they described it.“This property has the potential to create a beautifully renovated cottage to live in or rent. The structure looks to be solid with steel support beams, the timber is in good condition and the framing is done, all you need to do is finish it off.” FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOKlast_img read more

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Satellites beat Hearts

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first_imgThe Black Satellites beat Accra Hearts of Oak 2-1 ahead of preparations towards the African U-20 tournament.Two goals from striker Mahathma Otoo and a consolation from a Douglass Nkrumah penalty was all the Satellites needed to begin what is crucially a tough campaign for Coach Orlando Wellington who must retain the U-20 trophy as well as the World U-20 trophy.Ghana became the first African team to win the World U-20 tournament after the Sellas Tetteh led, Satellites captained by Dede Ayew beat Brazil in the final in 2009.Wellington told Adom FM reporter after the game, the victory is just a perfect start for his campaign.He revealed the team will enplane to Bacelona to brush-up preparations for the upcoming competitions.For the Phobians, it was the first defeat to new Serbian coach Nobojsa Vucicevic who has the herculean task of ensuring that the Phobians are not relegated. Hearts, embarrassingly, lie third from bottom and must avoid relegation with eleven games to go.Story by Nathan Gadugah/Myjoyonline.com/Ghanalast_img read more

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The Two River Times Wins Top Advertising Award

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first_imgThe Two River Times won the New Jersey Press Association’s top advertising award, the O’B, at the annual 2014 Newspaper Contest held Thursday at The Hamilton Manor in Hamilton, NJ.The ad was selected by the NJPA judges after considering the top winners across 62 categories. It was in the running for the O’B because it was selected for First Place, Best Newspaper Promotion or House Ad category.The winning advertisement is a full-page photo essay depicting life in Monmouth County, and was designed by Production Manager Chris Draper. Photographer Scott Longfield’s photos are of a father and son framed by the dazzling lights of a nighttime summer fair, lacrosse players skirmishing, a surfer and performers on stage. The copy read, “The website that is all about you. Your Community. Online daily. In print weekly. tworivertimes.com. Community matters.”A judge said, “Fantastic pictures – gives people a reason to log on!”Draper, who has worked at the weekly for 11 years, said, “Like everything at the TRT the award was a team effort. It’s an awesome looking trophy and I’m glad we’ll get to keep it in the office for a year.”The O’B is affectionately named for the NJPA’s Foundation Director John O’Brien, who long served as the association’s executive director. He was known to all as “O’B.”  The trophy, which is mounted on a huge pedestal in a wink to the Academy Awards, has been traveling to different member newspapers for over a decade. According to the NJPA’s Peggy Arbitell, newsroom staff have a little fun documenting how they dress the statue during the year, or photograph it on their vacations and at company picnics, to share on the NJPA.org’s website.The paper also won the following 2nd place awards, as chosen by the Hoosier State Press Association, who did the judging this year:Best Ad for Retail Business: VerandaBest Restaurant/Entertainment Ad- color: Angelica’sPackaging the News – Special Issue: TRTastings; Paint the Town PinkResponsible Journalism – Enterprise: Working by MoonlightReporting- Writing & Illustration – Special Subject Writing: Couple Serve God, Church Community Togetherand third place for Reporting- Writing & Illustration – Environmental- Health & Science Writing: Cool Spring Brings Tough Allergy Season— By Christina Johnsonlast_img read more

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