Making The Right Dance Studio Choice
Making the right dance studio choice for your child.
As moms we have all done it, sat and wondered for a while what our children will be when they grow up? A doctor, a lawyer or perhaps some of us think maybe a ballerina!
Following in the footsteps of her mother with that musical ear and talent, maybe one day she’ll dance for a great ballet company.
When she’s old enough we enroll her in a dance studio in hopes that someday she’ll be up there on that great big beautiful stage basking in her new-found fame, all with mom looking on from the side with such joy.
A perfect picture for sure, until the bubble bursts and you figure out exactly what dance classes, a dance studio and the process of learning to dance is all about for your child. Not so pretty a picture now sadly…
So, you picked a dance studio and enrolled your child and so far there’s been a lot of money paid out for the classes, recital costumes, tickets to the show etc.. But you feel like the teaching and learning to dance part for your child is like the turtle in the race. Slow and steady with little to no change as you watch from week to week.
Before you think your little one doesn’t have the chops, make sure the dance studio you have chosen is the best one.
Dance is one of the most unregulated arenas for performance art and teaching dance furthermore is so far away from regulation and certification that you often get “dance teachers” who really shouldn’t be teaching.
In most cases, the teachers used to be the students. So, you get a very slowing moving but expensive learning process, especially for toddlers (ages 3–4), who are the youngest to enroll.
With a teacher who was previously a student you may end up with someone who has little to no experience teaching dance let alone teaching it to young children.
So, to help we have put together a list of items that should be checked off as you sign over that check to your dance studio. As well, we’ve given you a little cheat sheet you can follow to ensure that your youngster is learning what they should.
Dance Studio Must Have Checklist
~Ask for dance teacher credentials. Have they gone to college and studied dance? Were they previous students at the dance studio?
~If they were previous students, ask to see recital or performance tapes of the classes previously taught by that teacher (see Dance Studio Learning Checklist of what to look for).
~Ask how many dances will they be learning throughout the studio dance year. A good studio will teach a child at least 2–3 dances in one year, utilizing one for their recital performance.
~Ask if the teacher has received any childhood education training. If not, ask what the teacher’s methodology is on learning at different paces with young children.
~As well, inquire about the teacher’s philosophy & approach on the correction of young students and overall control of the classroom.