From the type of dance to the studio you’ll be enrolling in, it’s important that you check carefully what would work best for your child. The development of your child’s motor skills, social behavior, and early life progress is at stake here. Knowing what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers is crucial so it will benefit your child in the long run.
Every parent would have their own reasons for enrolling their child in a dance class. It could be for keeping them occupied, letting them meet new friends, or allow them to be physically active. A dance class will be an excellent avenue to channel the energy of your toddler. It will also boost their creativity, confidence, and teamwork that will be beneficial for their future endeavors.
But remember that dance classes aren’t made equal. This is the part you should focus on. It’s important that the teacher, studio, and environment suit the personality of your child.
Here’s a checklist of what you consider before signing your kid up on a dance class:
FOR THE DANCE CLASS PROVIDER:
Having a studio close to your residence is a good idea. It will allow you to check on your child when needed and it will also save some time from driving. Still, there are studios that are worth the hassle if it means availing a much better dance education. Always consider if the studio is worth the distance or there’s a nearer option that will offer the same program.
However, don’t be stuck on location alone. What to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers includes so much more than this alone.
Before enrolling your child, take time to check the curriculum offered in the studio. Don’t send your child to a dance class just for the sake of doing so. Make sure that the little one will be exposed to holistic learning and a positive environment. As a parent or guardian, it’s your responsibility to know what your child is learning and will be doing.
A program that involves parental consultation is an excellent option. It means that the studio wants the guardians to keep up with their child’s learning and what needs to be done for their improvement.
Some dance class can be as long as two hours while others are brief enough at 30 minutes. The length of the class depends on what your child can handle and what you can afford. But length shouldn’t be the only consideration. Ask about the routine that will be done within the session and what’s the goal of every class. A longer class will likely teach your kids more dance steps but it will also be more expensive. Just the right bargain if you have the best program and if you want to buy more time for work.
Teachers in the program
A dance studio for kids will involve more than one teacher per class. Kids can be quite tough to handle, and it’s important that there are multiple teachers and administrators involved. The larger the class, the more teacher should be present. What to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers? It’s best that you enroll your toddler on a small class to avoid overwhelming him or her. The teachers will also have more time to focus on your child.
Check as well if the teachers are experienced on the craft and how skilled they are at handling children. A great dance teacher will know how to motivate a toddler.
The dance floor is where your child will spend the entire session. It should be non-slippery and safe enough during twirling, spinning, jumping, and moving. Since very young toddlers (age 4 below) can be quite unstable when standing, it’s an advantage if the dance floor has soft cushions. At some point, kids will tumble and slip and the floor should be secured enough to avoid injuries.
Check the place personally and see if there are cushions in place. If there’s none, ask the teacher if they can use some. You can also bring a cushion in case the studio doesn’t have one (which is very unlikely).
Dance class studios can either charge per session or per month. An upscale studio can charge as much as $50 per hour. There are also mid-types that will only incur a maximum of $160 per month complete with a program and regular classes. It all depends on the type of class where you enroll your toddler. I think a studio that equates its high fee with service and care, it would be the best choice.
Fees would vary per studio and type of dance. Make sure that you compare the prices of several dance studios that you’re considering. Again, fees are just one of what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers.
A dance class with a recital at the end of the program is a good thing if you want your child to be goal-oriented at a very young age. However, it could also put too much pressure and defeat the real purpose of the dance class which is developing the motor skills of the child.
Your guide here is to know what your child’s approach to dance is. If he or she is more of a hobbyist, you can enroll the child in an informal dance class that doesn’t give much emphasis on recitals or competition. Besides, your child is still a toddler and shouldn’t be subjected to pressure right away.
FOR YOUR CHILD:
Abilities and interests
Remember, it is your child that’s going to the dance class and not you. Always consider his or her abilities and interests before signing up for a program. At an early age, you can probably observe the genre where they are most interested in. If they love grooving to hip-hop or jazz, they would likely be interested in a more modern option. And if they’re inclined to ballroom or ballet, this should be your option too.
Don’t push your child to perform a dance that he or she can’t physically achieve. Start slow and always aim for learning. That’s what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers.
Most of the time, very young ages of 1 to 4 would find it difficult to catch up with technical dances like ballroom and jazz. If they are interested, you can enroll them in either hip-hop or ballet where the basics are usually taught. This would help them develop their physical skills without forcing their little bodies too much.
Another thing associated with age is the attention span and learning of a child. If you have a one-year-old, you should pick an informal and freestyle class. It would be easier for you, the teacher, and the child.
Do you have a bubbly child? Or is your little one very serious and goal-oriented? These varying personalities will play an important factor in choosing the right type of dance. A bubbly and outgoing child may thrive in hip-hop and freestyle dances. Meanwhile, a more reserved and disciplined tote would probably have a good time with ballet, ballroom, or jazz. Still, their choice matters as what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers.
If you’re worried that your child is a bit shy, you can try enrolling him or her to a dance class that promotes teamwork and self-esteem building. Still, be careful not to make it a loathsome task for them.
Your child’s choice matters, but as a parent, you should also weigh if a certain dance class will benefit your child. If your goal is to prep them for competitions, you should enroll them in a continuing program. But at such a young age, you should also think about their enjoyment and little learnings that will make a difference.
Combine your own and your child’s goal. Would it be recreational? Competitive? For exercise and weight loss? This will help you make informed decisions about your child’s activities.
Aside from the dance class fees, you will also spend on the attire of your child. Most dance studios won’t let its students wear baggy or non-dancing clothes. You might need to get a tutu, leotard, tights and the likes. Shoes are the most important here since ballet, jazz, ballroom, and tap would require dedicated footwear. A pair of these shoes won’t cost more than a hundred bucks.
What to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers? Make sure that you’re also informed about the schedule of these attires. Some programs will include a different set of routines that will require a separate type of clothing.
Type of dance:
Ballet is a very old dance that dates back to the 15th century. It’s usually seen in theaters and formal performances. Many parents enroll their kids in this dance which makes it the most common option nowadays. It’s an elaborate option and requires a certain level of discipline.
Is this for your child? If he or she thrives on structured programs, then ballet can probably be a good dance for the toddler. Ballet is also a good springboard if ever your child will transfer to another type of dance in the future. If you want your kid to develop physical grace, ballet would be excellent.
Hip-hop is a very energetic, fun, and experimental type of dance. Kids get inclined to this type of dance after watching music videos and other upbeat music. As the second most popular option, hip-hop can be your choice of recreational class if you don’t intend your child to compete in the future. That’s what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers who are very young.
One advantage of hip-hop dance is that children are easy to encourage performing the grooves. New music that they can relate to can be used here. And since toddlers are tiny balls of energy, hip-hop would be a very fun-filled activity. Less structured, but very enjoying.
Like ballet, jazz is a bit of an old soul since it started in the 1800s. It requires a high level of energy, precision, and commitment. Jazz is a good option if your toddler already has a background in ballet, otherwise, you should consider hip-hop. Also, not all kids would find this type of dance appealing. One thing is the music and another is the focus needed to achieve a certain dance step.
Anyway, if your toddler has a potential to jazz, you can enroll him in a class. But remember that this will be imposed with technicalities.
If you want your little one to be one of those kids snapping their bodies in the beat of tango, you can consider ballroom as a dance option. This is structured like ballet and jazz, so technicality will be a thing to consider here. Also, the ballroom is done in pairs. Consider if your child can cooperate dancing with a partner or he or she is better off enrolled in a freestyle dance class.
Ballroom dance is an excellent option if you see your child competing professionally in the future. Who knows, he or she might be the next ballroom sensation! It’s what to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers.
Acro is a dance that came from a combination of acrobatics and classical dance. It requires the child to build physical strength to perform steps and possibly compete professionally in the future. For a toddler, this could really be challenging, but fun if he or she keeps tumbling at home. It also includes graceful transitions which will add to the discipline of the dance.
If you want your kid to be more physically flexible, balance, strong, and disciplined, you can enroll him or her to this dance.
Tap dance is notable in classic musical films like Singin’ In the Rain where they use a special kind of shoe to produce the tapping sound. Any kid can be enrolled here; besides, the tapping could be really fun for the little ones. Your child will learn basic rhythms on this dance.
What to consider when choosing a dance class for toddlers? Put this on your list and you’ll never go wrong.