Although we recommend to accompany its lecture with the participation in the Seminar, the handbook represents a useful read in itself for anyone who works with people with mixed abilities, is concerned about questions of inclusion and non-discrimination, or simply wants to know more about the essence of tango. It not only describes a well-tested methodology of work, but also invites the reader to discover new perspectives for how to approach inclusion, which is one of the most relevant questions in our society. Instead of being told what to think or how feel, the reader is simply empowered to find his or her own answers, from the personal sensory experience.
The motto of this handbook is “Finding simplicity”, because our aim is to share our experience of how through very simple exercises one can achieve a deep connection both with oneself and with the others, and enjoy the whole process. Just as with the seminar itself, this handbook is intended as an interactive experience, practice-oriented and entertaining. It combines theoretical content with countless exercises, ideas for games that can be used in class, examples of real-life situations, questions and quotes from the participants, and many simple and fun elements that anyone can try at home or at their workplace.
However, this is not a textbook for learning how to dance tango. Moreover, for those interested in conducting teaching activities, we generally recommend complementary training, especially in the areas of body awareness and vocal training.
The Tinkers System and their methodology of work were born out of the personal stories of Andrea and Matías, with their particular combination of knowledge, personalities and backgrounds. Theirs is just a proposal, one option among many other possible. Other people will have different stories to tell. This is a guided invitation for each person to discover their own personal approach.
In this context, there are three main areas for research that we have identified based on the Tinkers’ multiple year experience in teaching tango-inclusion to people with and without disabilities:
– the impact at the personal level: what the tango-inclusion activities generate in the participants
– the impact at the social level: what the tango-inclusion activities generate within the communities where they take place
– the method created by the Tinkers for teaching tango-inclusion: how it was developed, what it entails and how it functions.
The main motivation for developing a guidebook with the method used by the Tinkers is to enable other persons to reproduce the experience and thus multiply its impact. In 2016 the Tinkers have started to offer seminars for persons who want to teach tango-inclusion according to this method. The pilot session was held during one month at Eins und Alles – Laufenmühle in Welzheim, Germany. The first level seminar was also organized during the Tango en Punta Festival in Bregenz, with 16 participants. The courses are primarily aimed at tango teachers, pedagogues and social workers.