Notes: Opening Doors for Others

doorThe custom of a door being held open for a lady by a gentleman can seem dated and sexist in our time. With the evolution of culture, comes the evolution of customs. So can be the case for the kindness of opening doors for others.

It is interesting to explore where this custom started. There are references to Vikings letting the lady go ahead as ambush decoys. Then there are the multiple time periods where women’s skirts reached enormous size, making it physically impossible to get next to a door to open it. Architecture may also have contributed. Doors in some time periods were very large, heavy and may have had studs for protection. It is possible that a woman and even a man, did not have the body mass to get a door moved by him/herself.1

Regardless of its history, how do we keep the curtesy of this practice without it being patronizing?

These two concepts are relatively cut and dry:

First, no matter who you are or who is behind you, it is always correct and courteous to hold a door open long enough so that the person behind you can catch it as they go through.

Second, it is always kind to open and hold a door for anyone whose arms are full with packages, are pushing a stroller or cart of some kind, are elderly or are using a wheelchair or other mobility aid.

Now for the trickier situations:

The basic concept here is that you open and hold a door for your superior. If you and your boss are approaching a doorway, you open and hold and they go first. If you are with your parent or grandparent, you open and hold (if you are the granddaughter, take a moment and make sure your grandfather does not want to take the lead). If you are with an equals, the person on the hinge side should open the door.

Whatever your gender, if someone chooses to open the door for you assume the best, which is he/she is being courteous not disparaging. Being offended by a kindness is not kind.

When you open a door for someone else, position yourself on the hinge side of the door, step ahead, reach across with the hinge-side arm and step back to open the door and allow the person to pass. If you need to switch places, fall behind to do so. It is important that all parties involve take their time, rushing may cause accidents.

At the end of the day, opening and holding a door for another is thoughtful and should have little to do with gender.

1Gentlemen Open Doors. (n.d.). Retrieved July 30, 2016, from http://www.forgetfulgentleman.com/blogs/forgetfulgentleman/6013466-gentlemen-open-doors

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News: Worth the Wait

EyeContactSocial Arts Classes started the Winter/Spring Semester on Friday, January 29, 2016. This postponed class, turned out to be worth the wait. Social Arts Atlanta (SAA) welcomed new families to Social Arts 101 and caught up with returning families during 102.

Three Pumps Please – The middlers of Social Arts 101 learned how to use good posture to sit and stand, how to execute a good handshake and the skills needed to introduce themselves to others. During a roll playing game, each student had his/her time to practice, make mistakes and improving with coaching, “only three pumps, please.” At the end of the lesson, the chairs were put to the sides and the Box Step was learned. Everyone tried to have a good dance frame, “gentlemen, extend that left arm” and all toes remained intact.

What Brings You Here? – We welcomed returning student during Social Arts 102. The group took some time to review the important parts of introductions, public right of way and gave SSA feedback on how they have used their skills from 101 and what they would like to make sure to cover in 102. The majority of the lesson focused on learning conversation skills; managing anxiety and the value of open ended questions, “what brings you here?” Roll playing was used to apply the concepts and everyone agreed that this was a topic that need attention in future lessons.

New Students Welcome – SAA is able to welcome new students to either Social Arts 101 or 102, if the student can attend a make-up lesson on Friday, February 12, 2016. Please contact Director, Carolyn Stine McLaughlin at socialartsatl@gmail.com for complete details.

Summer Fun with SAA – June may seem far away, but SAA is planning fun and exciting programs for ages 11-15 during this month. On The Town will be offered the week of June 20th. This day camp includes a morning lesson, a different dining experience every day and an excursion to a public site, all via public transportation. The camp will make the City of Atlanta your child’s class room!

Social Arts 101 Short Term will give students the opportunity to learn all the important lessons of 101 in a two-day format. This program will give tweens and teens with busy school year schedules a chance to learn in a compressed format and give the friend of a current student the chance to catch up to attend Social Arts 102 during the next semester with his/her buddy.

SAA is also developing an Interview Workshop. This will be a one day class to get tweens and teens ready for their first jobs and those all-important internships and college interviews.

Never Miss a Manners Message – In addition to news about classes, SAA also shares information about manners and etiquette on our blog and Facebook, sharing quotes and posts by others and also giving our own “two cents” on topics we think are important and interesting. Please take a moment to “like” us on Facebook, follow our blog by clicking the WordPress icon on the right of the page above our mailing list and add your name to our email list by following this link.

Manners matter and giving students the chance to practice etiquette in a supportive and fun way will give them the skills to meet success both professionally and personally.

News: Social Arts 101 & 102 Start Rescheduled for 1/29

YoungDancersThe first Lesson of the Winter/Spring Semester of Social Arts Classes has been rescheduled for this Friday, January 29, 2016

Social Arts 101 is for ages 11-13 and teaches through interactive exercises important social skill such as introductions, right-of-way, dining and managing social media. A social dance repertory is taught and includes the Box Step, Swig, Waltz, Merengue and Cha Cha.

Social Arts 102 is for ages 12-14. Completion of Social Arts 101 or its equivalent with another organization is required. This class builds on 101, always practicing basic skills and adding subjects important to young adult life such as interviewing and hosting events. Social dance skills are strengthened with leading and following exercises and this addition of traveling and turns.

Social Arts 101 meets at 6:00 pm and Social Arts 102 starts at 7:30 pm. These monthly hour-and-fifteen minute classes will meet January 29, February 19, March 25, April 22 and May 13. Classes are held at the International Montessori Academy just east of Little 5 Points. Tuition is $275. As of the publication of this post, registration remains open.

News: Social Arts 101 & 102 Begin Tomorrow

StudentsReadySocial Arts Atlanta offers training in etiquette and social dance, providing the knowledge to builds skills, which leads to confidence.

The Winter/Spring Semester of Social Arts Classes begins Friday, January 22, 2016.

Social Arts 101 is for ages 11-13 and teaches through interactive exercises important social skill such as introductions, right-of-way, dining and managing social media. A social dance repertory is taught and includes the Box Step, Swig, Waltz, Merengue and Cha Cha.

Social Arts 102 is for ages 12-14. Completion of Social Arts 101 or its equivalent with another organization is required. This class builds on 101, always practicing basic skills and adding subjects important to young adult life such as interviewing and hosting events. Social dance skills are strengthened with leading and following exercises and this addition of traveling and turns.

Social Arts 101 meets at 6:00 pm and Social Arts 102 starts at 7:30 pm. These monthly hour-and-fifteen minute classes will meet January 22, February 19, March 25, April 22 and May 13. Classes are held at the International Montessori Academy just east of Little 5 Points. Tuition is $275. As of the publication of this post, registration remains open.

Quote: Two Languages

It take two…Languages that is: body and spoken.

-Cindy Post Senning & Peggy Post

SmileTrue, true, the Posts are, as always, right on the money. A “hello” without a smile could be worse than saying nothing at all. The language and the face do not match and so the receiver will be confused.

Senning, Cindy Post., and Peggy Post. Teen Manners: From Malls to Meals to Messaging and Beyond. New York: Collins, 2007. Print.

Register for 101 & 102

ClassThe Winter/Spring Semester of Social Arts Class will begin Friday, January 22. Openings are still available for both classes and registration is being accepted both online and by mail.

The feedback that we have received about classes is that they are a great balance of information and fun. As the session goes by, the hands-on activities and practice increase the confidence and abilities of the students.

Social Arts 101 is for students in grades 6 – 8 and covers many primary social skill such as introductions and dining etiquette. The students also learn and practice a repertory of social dances.

Social Arts 102 is for students in grades 7 – 9 that have either completes Social Arts 101 with Social Arts Atlanta or its equivalent with another organization. The class continues to practice the basics and adds important next level actives such as managing social media, interviewing skills and how to handle difficult foods. Social dances are practiced and turning and traveling are added.

Both classes are five lessons and tuition is $275. Registration is first come, first served and class size is limited to 26.

 

News: Manners are Not Scary

ScaryManners are not a scary, over-the-top set of rules meant to trip you up but are a simple way to treat people with honesty, courtesy and respect which make life a whole lot easier and more enjoyable. This idea drives all the programs offered by Social Arts Atlanta.

Registration is now open for the Winter/Spring Semester. Social Arts 101 is offered on both Friday and Saturday evenings beginning on January 22, 2016. Social Arts 102 will be held on Saturday evenings starting on January 23. Both classes include 5 monthly sessions and tuition is $275.

Registration is limited so you are encourage to register as soon as possible.