Yesterday I used ChatGPT to write a Scottish Country Dance lesson plan. I conclude that SCD teachers are not going to be under threat any time soon! It suggested The Duke of Perth as a simple dance for a mixed ability group and wanted it to be repeated at a faster and faster tempo over a 20 minute period. All this was written in very plausible language but SCD is clearly a niche in the dance world that the model will take a while to get right – it wanted figures of eight to take 16 bars and reels of three 32 bars (and included some highly improbable geography). Despite correcting it, it also kept referring to a couple finishing a formation in “first position” rather than in “first place” – though it did amend this to “first position (first place)”. The nonsense content is obviously drawing on the wide world of dance and that also provided some good content – a comprehensive list of what the teacher and the dancers need to bring for example and a strong warm up part of the lesson, devoting much more time to that than usually happens for SCD.
A few days earlier, while visiting Auckland I attended the nearest SCD club, that meant a 20 minute brisk walk to get there and I arrived just in time to join in the10 minute warm up routine. That combination would be good every club night.