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Are Today’s Kids Different?

Are Today's Kids Different?

You may hear dance teachers say, “Today’s children are different, especially ages five to seven.” Every generation is different in some way, but the basic principles of child development are the same. Kids’ physical, emotional, social, and intellectual needs are the same. The teaching skills—namely the child-management principles that keep your class in order—are the same. […]

Introducing the Ballet Barre

Introducing the Ballet Barre

For our youngest dancers, the barre should be kept a mystery. Little girls rush into their first ballet class and all they want to do is hold on to that barre. It’s a fun part of being a ballerina, but sadly, many teachers don’t realize the detrimental effects of introducing kids to the ballet barre too […]

Why Natural Movement?

Why Natural Movement

Historically, ballet styling and technique developed slowly from that of folk dances and court dances. Ballet styling was added to those dances by adult dancers, whose basic movement and coordination skills were complete and in place. Children were not considered old enough for ballet lessons until ages eight to ten, when their basic skills were […]

The Teaching Wheel

The Teaching Wheel

If students are not retaining the new skills we teach them, it could be because we as teachers are not honoring their natural flow of learning. Learning new skills follows a logical pattern, and we have to address the “why” and “how” of a new step in order to ignite our students’ passion and desire for learning it. […]

Determine Their Intermediate Pointe Readiness

Determine Intermediate Pointe Readiness

When teaching beginning pointe, or when teaching any form of dance, you’ll observe early on that every student will progress at a different pace. Some will catch on quickly, practice strengthening exercises at home, seek more information or opportunities to expand their knowledge. These will, therefore, jump ahead of their classmates in physical and technical skill. Others […]

How Learning Happens

How Learning Happens

Ever felt frustrated in class because you feel like your students are just not getting what you’re trying so hard to teach them? You explain the concepts to them every single class and still don’t see evidence of that information being internalized. Could your idea of “thorough” actually be too much for your students? Are […]

Teaching the Accelerated Child

Teaching Accelerated Children

How can we, as dance teachers, best serve those young students in our classrooms who we notice have some great potential to be more in the ballet world? Sometimes we see that they are progressing well, but we don’t know how to push them forward in a safe and constructive way. Today we draw from […]

Find the Causes of Their Actions

art_find-the-causes__Blog

All Behavior is Learned Out of the clear blue, your student throws a tantrum. Another student sulks shyly and avoids eye contact. What do you do? Understand that all behaviors result from an underlying cause. Come to class armed with the perspective that you can manage your students’ behavior when you understand the underlying causes […]

The First Weeks of Pointe Class

First Weeks of Pointe Class

Many teachers will be ushering their students into the first few weeks of pointe training this upcoming season. For many students, it is a very exciting time of choosing the right shoes, preparing their feet for the challenges ahead, sewing ribbons and elastic, and dealing with the emotional high that comes with their first experiences […]

Helping the Undercoordinated Students

Helping the Under-Coordinated Student

Coordination can be taken for granted by students who have progressed naturally and successfully through its phases. Others have had a tough go, and as dance teachers, we see the evidence of that struggle. It can be almost embarrassing for the undercoordinated, but with enough attention given, there is hope. Even the older undercoordinated dancers […]