I just love teaching dance to children! For me personally, I feel the benefits of dance everytime I get to move around to music! It feels good to be able to pass that on to young people. I love to feed their need to move and explore what their body is capable of! I love seeing the smiles light up on their faces when we start to jump around. I love feeling that I am doing something that will help grow physically and emotionally.
Children’s dance classes have many positive effects. Dance classes can increase strength and flexibility, add grace and poise, and even increase self esteem. Most of all, dance classes are fun! Children love to move and they love music. I always start class with something upbeat to get everybody moving. The smiles on the children’s faces is immediate!
It is so much fun seeing how dance classes have affected my students in positives ways. Shy students become more outgoing and confident and kids that may have “two left feet” become more graceful. Or simply seeing students work on a dance or just a particular step and finally achieve what they want to accomplish and the satisfaction they receive from that. As a teacher, there is nothing like it!
I am very passionate about teaching for these reasons. I think dance is so important. I firmly believe that people need to move and moving with the benefits of music is even better for our well being. Dancing truly makes people happier!
My belief about teaching ballet to preschoolers is that classes should be creative and fun first. Children at this age will have fun learning actual steps however they really learn best in a creative way. This way we can keep that love of dance and movement going. If dance becomes all about right and wrong or doing steps over and over again we will lose our preschool students. They are not ready for that level of understanding. How can we teach dance, have preschoolers actually learn and grow and keep the class fun? This is what I have discovered and talk about on this site as well as in my book, How to Teach Preschool Ballet.
This is what my instructors and I also teach in my Wish Upon a Ballet™ dance classes. I created these preschool ballet classes because as I was growing as a teacher I learned what makes a preschooler “tick”. Through experience I learned what is fun for a preschooler, how to hold on to their attention and how to teach dances and steps so they learn real ballet.
Wish Upon a Ballet™ classes are fun first and foremost. As a bonus children are learning actual ballet steps and technique. We are not talking that after my class they are ready to join ABT but they will know, for example, first position, how to plié and how to chassé. They will also be happy to show you because we turn learning into a game!
There are not many activities that I would compare to dance classes for children. Of course there are benefits to other activities such as sports or playing an instrument. But combining both music and movement just gives an extra edge and uses the brain in a more complete way. Give your child the gift of a dance class!