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Archive | Classroom Planning

Zoom Basics for Teaching Ballet Online

zoom ballet teaching

We are living in unprecedented times as dance teachers, parents, and human beings on this earth. Not only is there a mostly-unknown virus spreading in our countries and the resulting fear and isolation, but we, as professionals are having to completely reinvent the wheel for how we will deliver the education and training we’ve promised […]

Cue Phrases

Cue Phrases for Teaching Ballet

Cue phrases can be both helpful and fun for teachers and students.  I remember one piece I choreographed on my advanced dancers. They were having difficulties with this circular formation and somehow I related it to a “pit of despair”.  I said “don’t fall in the pit of despair.” And eventually I was able to […]

Reverence—Just Do It

Ballet Reverence

Ever taught a class or in a studio where the students haven’t been exposed to reverence? When you attempt to do that portion of class they react in a most awkward way. When they realize you expect them to applaud—oh my, the awkward level shoots through the roof. What is that about? I honestly have […]

Teach Young Students to Count Music

Counting Music

I am an advocate of instilling musicality in students, no matter the age or skill level. It is an integral part of ballet, therefore it deserves a place in training from the very start. But I don’t deny teaching young students to count music is a challenge. So challenging that I understand the choice not […]

How I Mix Up Port de Bras for My Students

How I Mix Up Port de Bras

Balancé Temps de Fleche Saut de Chat Chassé Entournant Tombé Pas de Bourrée Just a few steps for which many dancers have a default port de bras. There are many steps that would make it on this list. Maybe at one school all the dancers extend the arms to the First Arabesque line for a […]

Create Effective Yearly Goals

Discover Goals

Goals have the potential to be . . . Motivating Counterproductive Smart Overwhelming Accessible Unattainable Unwavering Fluid Restrictive Freeing Manipulative Organic And a host of other things . . . Basically, goals are complex. This makes them rather intimidating. Or rather, it makes setting goals intimidating. As teachers, we often find ourselves encouraging our students […]

Lessons in Ballet History

History of Ballet

I am thoroughly convinced there is never enough time in ballet class to teach everything we wish to teach. One year, I taught a three hour ballet class once a week to advanced dancers who were already taking many other ballet classes throughout the week. One would think in that scenario I would find three […]