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HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM THE DANCE TEACHER WEB FAMILY

We here at Dance Teacher Web would like to take the opportunity to thank you all for a wonderful year. It has been an eventful one for us and we’re sure it has been for you too. It’s hard to believe another full year has gone by so quickly. You have all grown with the successes, changes and challenges of the year and persevered.

This is the time of year however, when we should remember we are here on this earth for what is a brief moment. Now is the time to take a big breath, slow down for a minute and enjoy the fruits of our labor. This is also the time of year when we can reflect on why we do what we do and how lucky we are to do it every day.....

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CREATING A PLACE OF INCLUSION, POSITIVITY & KINDNESS AT YOUR STUDIO

In a time when the climate of the world is anything less than calm, each one of us battles divisiveness, negativity, unkindness and uneasiness to ensure our students that their studio is a place they can always come for inclusiveness, safety, love and emotional release.
While we are ourselves don't always have the answers to give our dancers as to why circumstances and situations are the way they are, the one thing we can always provide them with is the reminder that dance heals. It is hope. It is an art form where mind, body and soul unite to calm the spirit and clear the mind....



 

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MORE CORE, LESS CRUNCHES!

We can never give our dancers enough core building exercises as the core is the source for strength, flexibility and balance. It’s surprising how many young dancers face a disconnect when it comes to utilizing their core in their technique practices, so it’s important as dance teachers to incorporate exercises which activate the center and help build that strength. We don’t, however always have to give students the same old crunches and sit-ups with a million repetitions. The three exercises below are all a fresh take on core activation and can be added to your center warmup while demonstrating the many different ways we can achieve a strong center!.....

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TIPS FOR HELPING YOUR BEGINNERS RETAIN CHOREOGRAPHY

When young, beginner dancers are learning choreography, whether as a class exercise or in rehearsals, they can sometimes become overwhelmed when trying to pick up material. Keeping in mind that picking up choreography is a skill and can be challenging for even the most seasoned professional, it’s important to pay attention to where they are currently and aim for them to work effectively. The tips below offer a few important ideas that have helped my own dancers in class and rehearsal and even helped in terms of increasing retention as the year progressed.....

 

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THREE FUN IDEAS FOR SPREADING THANKS AT YOUR DANCE STUDIO

With the holidays coming up, it’s a great time to take pause with young dancers and give thanks for all we are afforded. With the hustle and bustle of the year, we sometimes forget to take a minute and reflect and it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important. What better way than to instill a tradition with students and spread kindness throughout your studio. Not only will it evoke the feeling of thankfulness and joy, but it also serves as team building exercises, camaraderie and studio spirit. Below are some of my favorite ideas we have done in years past as well as a fun and festive way to kick off the holiday season and lead up to break....

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BELOVED BOOKS ABOUT DANCE FOR YOUNG READERS

Getting young dancers to read is just as important as getting them moving at a young age. This prompts an active lifestyle with an energized mind. So why not combine these two great activities with some literature in dance?! Below are some of my favorite children’s books on dance for young readers, that I think will inspire your dancers and take them on a journey as they leap into their next class!

Teachers and studio owners, these are also wonderful additions to your studio or class library as well!

*photos courtesy of amazon.com

 

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HELPING DANCERS KEEP PERSPECTIVE REGARDING COMPETITION SCORING

I am the most competitive person out there. I'd be lying if I said I didn't like to win. Who doesn't? Nobody goes into a competitive situation and says, "Come to think of it, I'd actually like to lose." As a teacher, I love to see my dancers excel even more. There's no greater feeling than watching your students' hard work pay off and be recognized for their commitment and talent. And, let's be honest, it also makes us feel good as choreographers when our work is acknowledged by our peers as well.....


 

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TEACHING TECHNIQUE WITH DETAIL & SPECIFICITY

It seems nowadays especially, so many things get generalized, glossed over, breezed by and given half-hearted attention to. We glimpse, we glance, we mark, we coast and this effect trickles down to our dancers. What happened to attention to detail? What happened to specificity? Clarity? Intricacy? Painstaking accuracy? These values are slipping away faster than we realize and what was maybe just an oversight is now becoming trend. Unfortunately, this is the fast paced world we live in where people prefer ten things done at 60% vs. one thing done at 100%.....

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THE IMORTANCE OF TEACHING A CONSISTENT WARMUP

Dancers today are faced with a whole generation of fellow versatile, talented technicians. These peers will be their competition, their colleagues and future artists they’ll collaborate with and cross paths with as their dance career flourishes. As teachers who are in charge of their development at the most crucial time in their training, how you design your class is pivotal....

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STOP STRESSING ABOUT MUSIC SELECTION

     Is faculty music selection a constant stress? Do you have to approve all music choices because teachers choose the same music or inappropriate content, music that does not match your recital theme, dated and overdone songs, etc.?  How do you diplomatically suggest to faculty that you’d prefer them to think of another idea? Being able to balance artistic directorship without stifling teachers creativity is a fine line. Sometimes though, for the sake of the business and developing memorable works that showcase professionalism, variety and artistry is necessary.......

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DANCE TEACHER TIP: REIGNING IN THE UNRULY DANCE STUDENT!

As teachers, we all love when our students excel and have a stellar performance year. A year where we see the student blossom and have that "A-HA" moment when everything starts to click for them in class. It's wonderful to see their hard work pay off as well as our own and is the moment every teacher waits for. However, what happens when those students come back to class the following season and are getting, shall we say, a little "overly confident" and a little too big for their britches?

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DANCE STUDIO OWNERS HERE'S HOW TO BUILD WORD-OF-MOUTH REFERRALS

Even in today's media-driven world, there is no better form of advertising than word-of-mouth, a personal referral from someone whose opinions others trust and respect. Dance school owners are among the biggest beneficiaries of word-of-mouth referrals, as they require no advertising and marketing budget. The key is how do you get your students and their parents talking?

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FIVE THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN TEACHING CREATIVE MOVEMENT TO TODDLERS

Those with the calling, talent & patience to teach dance to toddlers will tell you it requires a skill set all its own. A special, dedicated subgroup of dance teachers, the knowledge and training necessary to teach these littles while creating a fun experience takes some thought and careful planning. Remembering this is a crucial developmental time, the five tips below will help get you started and also be a reminder that you are extremely essential to this fundamental time in dance training and child development! .........

 

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HALLOWEEN ACTIVITIES YOUR STUDIO WILL LOVE!

Happy early Halloween everyone!

As this is my absolute favorite time of year, I thought we could all get into the spirit of sharing some fun and festive Halloween ideas to celebrate in your dance studio! Halloween is definitely a holiday with the flair for the dramatic, so this is the perfect occasion for dance studios to create an amazing environment to let imaginations run wild! Here are a few of my thoughts!......

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FIVE THINGS YOU SHOULD BE TEACHING YOUR DANCERS OUTSIDE OF TECHNIQUE

Teaching dance is a gift afforded to us. It is a special talent and we are the lucky ones to get to do what we do each day. It does however come with its share of responsibilities and teaching young dancers technique and performance just simply isn't enough. The following five items are also important lessons that should be taught to and expected from your dancers starting from the youngest, tiny beginners to your oldest, most advanced pre-professionals. This also holds true for recreational students. These values set a precedent, teach etiquette, decorum, respect for the studio and art form and implement professionalism, courtesy and respect for oneself.....

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