Updated: Feb 9
Don't think of Dumbbell 101 as a move away from Weightlifting 101, but rather as an extension of it. I have always had misgivings about using a PVC pipe or a wooden stick for scaling down Olympic weightlifting, since most exercises are possibly harder to do with that piece of equipment and therefore defeats the purpose. Some dumbbell exercises are harder to do than their PVC equivalent, but those are the exception not the rule.
In my opinion, the dumbbells are an excellent piece of equipment for building the necessary physical, technical and terminological foundation for a successful transition into weightlifting at a later stage.