If your child is getting ready to start dance classes, it is likely you want them to be as prepared as possible and have questions about the whole process. It doesn’t matter if you have older children or younger children who are going to start dancing, despite the age group there are things you can do at home before you hit the dance studio.
From ballroom dancing, ballet, tap, jazz, and hip hop we’re going to share 4 ways to prepare your child for dance classes as well as how you can get your child moving at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Durham, NC.
How to Prepare for Children’s Dance Lessons
1. Introduce your child to different types of dances through movies, TV shows, and music
Throughout the past hundred years many different form of creative dance have emerged, which means there are many different types of dance styles that children learn at dance studios throughout the world. Whether they developed their love for dance from older children or from just making up moves to popular music on the radio there are lots of examples they can follow to prepare before their attempts in studio!
You can start off by playing the music that they will be dancing to and mimicking the moves. This will allow them to get the beat and the rhythm as they begin to listen to different songs. Try searching for music on YouTube, virtual classes, or music streaming channels.
You’ll also want them to expose them to different types of dances through movies and TV shows. This will let them see the dance moves in action and imagine themselves in similar roles.
2. Help them learn the basic steps by practicing at home
You don’t have to be a professional dancer to help your child practice the basic steps at home. You can take the initiative to pull up some videos on a YouTube channel that displays the type of dance they’re going to be doing. Maybe, even make it a family affair and do the moves along with them. Studies have shown that getting your kids moving with you is a great way to spend time together and create memories as they prepare for their dance classes.
3. Explain the importance of listening and following directions
While dance classes are a fun activity, it is important that kids know they need to listen and follow directions when they are around their dance family. No matter their age, you are paying for the dance lessons so you will want your child to get the most out of their lessons. If they’re not listening, they won’t be able to learn the moves and skills that are needed for the dance.
So before stepping into class take a few opportunities to explain the importance of listening and following directions while they’re having fun dancing. The teacher will thank you and your child will get the most out of their dance class. It’s a win-win for everyone!
4. Equip them with the proper attire and gear, including dance shoes, leotards, and tights
It is important to do your research on the classes you have signed up for because different styles of dance may require different gear and different levels of motor skills. This will help ensure your child is prepared with the proper attire and confidence. You can also check with your child’s dance teacher to see if they want students to wear a specific outfit.
If there are no specific instructions when it comes to attire, here are some basic things to keep in mind.
When it comes to shoes, you want them to have comfortable shoes that are suitable for the dance they are doing. If your child is taking a ballet class, ballet slippers are appropriate. As you would probable guess, jazz shoes would be best for jazz classes.
As for ballroom dancing, it is best to check with the teacher to see what type of shoes would be best for the dance they’ll be doing as ballroom dancing covers a variety of creative movement.
Despite what you may think based off of the many brochure you have seen, each dance style may need a variety of outfits. Tights and leotards may be good for a ballet class, but if your child is taking a jazz class, you may want to keep the tights and leotards under a pair of stretchy shorts and a tank top.
Then if you are also taking hip-hop classes, there are a lot of high-energy moves that require clothes kids can move in. Younger kids may be most comfy in shorts and a t-shirt and older kids may prefer specific outfits, maybe even spandex material designed for lots of movement.
When your child is going to dance class the outfit and shoes are not the only thing parents have to consider. You also want to make sure their hair isn’t going to get in the way. For ballet, hair back in a tight bun is usually appropriate. This will keep any stray hair out of their face and from becoming a distraction.
For a jazz class, you can probably just put your child’s hair in a quick ponytail. you just want to keep their hair out of their eyes as they move. The same follows for many of classes that fall under the Ballroom dance style.
In hip-hop dance classes, you probably won’t have to do anything special with their hair because it’s a more casual form of dance. As long as your students are comfortable, and their hair doesn’t restrict any movement, they should be just fine.
After reading this blog post we hope that you are feeling confident on how to prepare your new dancer to rock any dance style! Once you and your child feel ready to hit the dance floor, you must find a dance studio to call home!
Here at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Durham, NC we offer ballroom dance lessons for all age groups, not just adults! We love teaching dance to children of different ages.