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FUN, BEGINNER MOVEMENT SENTENCE LESSON PLAN!

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Blog

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Here’s a wonderful lesson plan for your beginner students which is fun, encourages creativity, literacy, free-movement and choreographic voice. See below for progressions for older & more advanced students as well!

Lesson Goal: Have dancers select 3 movements from Group A, 3 choreographic devices/ directions from Group B and 1 emotion from Group C to create their own movement sentence. Have them improvise and/or choreograph their selections with the designated emotion& perform in solos, duets, trio or large groups!

Lesson Progression Ideas:

Add more selections to each category.

Add more advanced selections to each category for older dancers.

Have dancers vary emotions throughout a longer movement phrase.

Have dancers learn each other’s phrases to build longer works.

Have dancers retrograde their movement sentences.

Vary music by randomly selecting songs each time dancer performs.

GROUP A:

run

walk

skip

crawl

hop

float

slither

melt

twist

gallop

slide

march

kick

sit

swing

twirl

spiral

GROUP B:

Stop

Pause for 5 seconds & start over

Change levels

Change directions

Repeat last step & keep going

Face backwards

Clap twice

Snap 3 times

Travel a circular path

Travel in a diagonal

Travel in a zig-zag

Move slowly

Move quickly

Move fluidly

Move sharply

GROUP C:

happy

sad

mad

silly

sleepy

curious

loved

serious

disappointed

excited

shy

mellow

mischievous

grouchy

surprised

frightened

                   funny                  

 

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Author

Jessica Rizzo Stafford

Jessica Rizzo Stafford

Jessica Rizzo Stafford is a native New Yorker and graduate of NYU Steinhardt's Dance Education Master’s Program; with a PK-12 New York State Teaching Certification. Her double-concentration Master’s Degree includes PK-12 pedagogy and dance education within the higher-education discipline. She also holds a BFA in dance performance from the UMASS Amherst 5 College Dance Program where she was a Chancellor's Talent Award recipient. Jess now works extensively with children, adolescents and professionals as choreographer and teacher and conducts national and international master-classes specializing in the genres of modern, contemporary, musical theatre and choreography-composition. Jess’ national and international performance career includes works such as: The National Tour of Guys & Dolls, The European Tour of Grease, West Side Story, Cabaret, Sweet Charity, Salute to Dudley Moore at Carnegie Hall, guest-dancer with the World Famous Pontani Sisters and IMPULSE Modern Dance Company. Jess has been a faculty member for the Perichild Program & Peridance Youth Ensemble & taught contemporary and jazz at the historic New Dance Group and 92nd Street Y in NYC. She was Company Director at the historic Steffi Nossen School of Dance/Dance in Education Fund and in 2008 traveled to Uganda where she taught creative-movement to misplaced children. The experience culminated with Jess being selected as a featured instructor at the Queen's Kampala Ballet & Modern Dance School. She has conducted workshops for the cast of LA REVE at the Wynn, Las Vegas and recently taught at the 2011 IDS International Dance Teacher Conference at The Royal Ballet in London, UK. She is also on faculty for the annual Dance Teacher Web Conferences in Las Vegas, NV. Currently, Jess is a faculty member at the D'Valda & Sirico Dance & Music Centre and master teacher & adjudicator for various national and international dance competitions. Recently, she has finished her NYU Master’s thesis research on the choreographic process of technically advanced adolescent dancers and is the creator of “PROJECT C;” a choreography-composition curriculum for the private studio sector. Jess is also faculty member, contributing writer and presenter in the choreography and “how to” teaching segments on the celebrated danceteacherweb.com. For more info, visit her website at www.jrizzo.net.

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