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More than Just Music: The Benefits of Learning an Instrument

Summer will be here soon, and it could be a great time for your child to start taking music lessons. There are numerous benefits that come along with learning to play an instrument, but did you know that it goes beyond reading music and finding the rhythm? There are also cognitive, social, and physical skills that children acquire as they practice their instrument.

  1. Further Develop Fine Motor Skills
    We don’t often think of music as physical, but playing an instrument requires coordinated movements, proper breathing, and endurance. For example, percussion instruments require specific movements of the hands, arms and feet. This type of instrument is great for high-energy kids who focus and learn via movement. String and keyboard instruments require the right and left hand to perform different movements simultaneously, which helps develop ambidexterity, and enhances coordination and timing. Further development in these physical skills can help your child in other activities including dance and athletics.
  2. Encourages Discipline and Patience
    It takes time to figure out how to make music with an instrument. The first few weeks and months can be filled with plenty of wrong notes, weird sounds and long pauses. When a young musician perseveres through the initial struggle, they will be excited when they see progress in their music. Moreover, they’ll learn quickly that practicing and putting effort into their music will also help them to see results.
  3. Boosts Brain Connectivity
    Numerous studies have detailed the benefits that playing music has on cognitive development. For example, scientists have found that in musicians’ brains the two hemispheres of the brain work together more effectively. This means that the creative right side of the brain is more connected to the left side of the brain responsible for logic, language and more. Harnessing the power of both their creative and logical sides, can help children to become better thinkers and problem solvers.

Check out the infographic below for more great benefits of music education. For more information on instrument and voice lessons at Dance Pointe, please visit our website.

the benefits of music lessons for kids infographic
Thanks to http://www.musiciansbyte.com/ for this graphic.

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Get Your Dancer Reading with These Inspiring Books

Need a few good book ideas to spark your dancer’s interest in reading? There are a number of intriguing biographies and engaging fictional books that will delight young readers. Whether they’re reading on their own, or with you at bed time, these books have empowering stories of dancers overcoming adversity, pursuing their passion, and finding true friends and family along the way.

Michaela DePrince was a young girl in Sierra Leone when civil war broke out. After losing both of her parents, she was sold to an orphanage where she endured terrible conditions and abuse before escaping to a refugee camp. Her story changes when she is adopted by an American family, and brought to the US along with her best friend, Mia. While still in Sierra Leone, she discovered an old magazine cover with a ballerina on the cover, and this beautiful image sparked her desire to pursue ballet. Through hard work and determination, she overcame prejudice to become a professional ballerina who has danced with prestigious companies around the world. Her story will inspire young dancers to work hard to overcome obstacles and to achieve their dreams.

Michaela’s story is available in a variety of formats for both young and more mature readers. The versions for older readers deal with some mature subject matter involving violence and death during Michaela’s childhood in Sierra Leone. Parents may want to read along with younger readers, or choose one of the books for younger readers. These versions tell her story without the detail of the books for older readers.

Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina – Grades 6 and Up
Ballerina Dreams: From Orphan to Ballerina Grades 1-3

Misty Copeland began ballet at the age of 13, which was much later than most who wish to pursue a professional career in dance. However, her hard work and amazing natural talent, led her to become the first African American Principle Dancer with the renowned American Ballet Theater. Misty didn’t fit into the mold of a traditional ballerina, but she never let the negativity of others stop her from pursuing her dreams and sharing her gift with the world. Readers of all ages will be inspired by the beauty of Misty’s dancing and the strength of her spirit.

You Should Meet: Misty Copeland Grades 2-3
Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina Young Readers Edition Grades 4-7

Fans of Dance Moms and So You Think You Can Dance will be familiar with Maddie Ziegler. This young lady has made a name for herself through her dance routines and bubbly personality. She has also added writing to her list of accomplishments with a book for young readers called The Audition. This book tells the story of 12 year-old Harper who must join a new studio and dance team when she moves to Florida. She finds her first class at the new studio harder than she expected, and realizes she must work hard if she is going to prove to the other dancers and to herself that she deserves a spot on the team. Once she befriends another newbie at the studio, the girls work together to sharpen their skills and find places for themselves in the new studio.

The Audition by: Maddie Ziegler Grades 4-6

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Is Musical Theater Right for your Kid?

While the snowflakes outside right now make me think that winter may stay forever, I know that soon spring will arrive, and summer will not be far behind. Hats and gloves will be replaced with sunglasses and sunscreen, and kids everywhere will rejoice as they finish their last day of the school year.

As a parent, you’re probably beginning to plan your summer schedule, and look for classes and camps for your child. This year, Dance Pointe will offer a variety of classes and camps including a Musical Theater Camp. This camp will give kids and teens the chance to explore the stage through singing, dancing and acting. Not sure if it’s right for your kid? Check out our list below for just a few of the benefits of participating in musical theater.

    1. Encourages Their Love of Performing
      “Mommy, watch me!” Many kids are born with a love of performing, and what starts in your living room can carry on to the stage. With fun songs, costumes and dance steps, children can learn to love sharing their talents in front of others. In addition, a successful performance now can give them something to look back on when those adolescent nerves start to kick in.
    2. Lets Them Get Lost in the Story
      Many of us have gotten caught up in a great musical. Whether it’s Hamilton, Shrek the Musical, or Finding Neverland, the intriguing stories and emotion-filled songs take you on a journey from beginning to end. Participating in musical theater lets a child immerse themselves in a whole new world, which expands their imagination. By participating in a story that is different from their own, they learn about other people and their experiences, which broadens their perspective and promotes understanding.
    3. Encourages Life in the Moment – Not on the Screen
      We all love our screens, and the information and entertainment that they provide. But, it’s also good to break free of the virtual world, and focus on being in the moment. In musical theater, kids are moving, expressing, and thinking up on stage rather than simply sitting and watching. They are creating rather than consuming, while also communicating with their fellow actors and an audience.
    4. Gives Kids a Chance to Learn in Different Styles
      Musical theater includes at least five of the seven distinct learning styles. Visual, aural, verbal, physical, and social learners can all find themselves and their own way of learning in musical theater. It’s also a great way for kids to discover new ways to learn and process information, which they can take with them to the classroom and beyond.
    5. Challenges Kids to Try New Things
      With singing, dancing and drama, musical theater provides a lot of challenges and opportunities. Your child may have experience in dance, but what happens when they need to sing and dance at the same time? How will they tackle memorizing lines as well as dance steps? Musical theater is a great way for kids and teens to add to their existing skill set, and to challenge themselves in new and exciting ways.

Would you like to learn more about Dance Pointe’s 2018 Musical Theater Camp?
Click here to visit our website for more information. Once you’re there, you can also register and pay online, which checks one more thing off of your to-do list! Don’t wait, space is limited!

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More than Poms: Life Skills Learned Through Cheer

Whether you have a teenager who is looking to join her school’s cheer squad, or a preschooler with a lot of energy, cheerleading is a great way for kids of all ages to master a variety of physical and mental skills. Check out the list below for a few of the beneficial life skills that cheer can teach!

  1. Mental Focus
    It takes a lot to master jumps, dance moves, and complicated routines. Students must pay close attention to their coach as they’re teaching, and while practicing the skill on their own. In our fast-paced world full of distractions, a focused mind that can block out distractions will help kids and teens in all areas of life.
  2. Working Until You Succeed
    No one succeeds the first time they attempt a toe touch, or a back handspring. It takes time for the body and mind to learn how to make a tumbling pass or a dance combination really work. As they practice, kids are given a safe place to try something new, and then try it a thousand more times until they get it. We focus not only on their final success when they master the skill, but also celebrate their willingness to continue trying even if it takes time to succeed.
  3. The Show Must Go On
    In a recent cheer competition, I watched as one of the cheerleaders stumbled coming out of her tumbling pass. She had so much momentum that she couldn’t stop herself, and we all watched as she continued to fall forward for what felt like minutes, but I know was just a few seconds. Ugh, I felt so bad for her. I imagined the hours of practice that she had devoted, and how many times it had gone right, only for it to go wrong when it mattered. But, she recovered, and caught back up with her squad. She could have run off of the court, frustrated and upset, but, instead, she re-focused and kept on going. The ability to fail and move on is vital because success is born out of failure and endurance.
  4. Hard Work
    Cheerleaders are exciting to watch. The intricate dance moves, jumps, and tumbling passes full of tucks and back handsprings always bring cheers and applause from the audience. It’s natural to want to be a part of that. However, those who want to be successful have to put in hours of practice and conditioning to wow the crowd for just a few minutes. This commitment to hard work is something that I know we all want our kids to have, and cheer is a great way to work on that skill.
  5. Teamwork
    The power of a girl squad is hard to beat. When young women work together to perfect a routine, they also develop strong bonds that extend way beyond practice. Teammates learn to work hard not just for themselves, but also for their entire team. They know that their team’s success depends on how well they perform, which will drive them to work even when they might not feel like doing it for themselves.
  6. Skills for Mini Poms
    In addition to the larger life skills that older children can learn, cheer is also a great way for younger children to develop physical skills including balance, movement, motor skills and tumbling basics. Little ones can also improve their listening skills and focus while they pay attention to their coach’s instructions. They will also develop flexibility and coordination all while making new friends and having a great time!

This summer Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center will host cheer camps for girls ages
3-18. Each camp is designed to fit the needs of its age group with skills including tumbling, jumps, cheer motions are more. For more information, visit the
Cheerleading Camps page on our website. Registration for July and August sessions is open now.

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5 Ways to Care for Yourself on Valentine’s Day and Beyond

Valentine’s Day is a great time to let our kids, spouses, best friends, pets, teachers and more know how much we love them. But, couldn’t you use a little treat, too? After all, we are in our 18th consecutive month of winter, and you’ve treated plenty of colds, made lots of dinners, and driven your children to more activities than you can remember. Check out the winter self-care tips below for a few ways to treat yourself today and every day.

  1. Stay Hydrated
    We have all heard the benefits of drinking water millions of times, but how many of us are actually getting the amount we need each day? Why not find a reusable water bottle in a beautiful color or pattern that makes it easy to remember your water? A fun water bottle that travels with you throughout the day will keep you hydrated and feeling great as you keep up with all that the day asks of you.
  2. Try a New Face Mask
    While you’re on that Target run for milk and diapers, why not take a moment to grab a face mask in the beauty aisle? Skincare is a great way to relax, and who doesn’t feel great when their skin is glowing? Lock the bathroom door, and grab 15 minutes to indulge in a treat for your face.
  3. Go to Bed Early
    Once you get everyone else settled into bed, why not tuck yourself in just a little bit early? Yes, there are chores you could do, emails to return, and projects to work on, but those can wait. Focus on good sleep tonight, and wake up ready to tackle your to-do list tomorrow.
  4. Breathe and Stretch
    Our muscles get stressed and tired throughout the day. That stress from work might be sitting between your shoulder blades, or all that time in the car may have led to tightness in your hips and legs. Find a few moments in your day to breathe deeply and stretch those muscles. Check out a yoga video on YouTube (Yoga with Adriene is great!). This will help open up your muscles, and leave you relaxed and energized.
  5. Write Down Your Ta-Done List
    A “Ta-Done” list is a list of all that you have accomplished during the day. In our busy lives, it’s easy to rush from one task to another. At the end of the day, all of the uncompleted tasks on your to-do list can be quite discouraging. However, how many tasks and projects did you complete that never even made it onto the list? Did you help tackle that difficult homework assignment? Remembered to buy toilet paper while there was still a spare roll in the house? Cuddled your kiddo until they drifted off to sleep? Take a moment to reflect on your accomplishments, and you’re less likely to feel discouraged about what didn’t get done.

Happy Valentine’s Day from everyone at Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center. We hope you have an amazing day with your families, and also find a few moments to care for yourself.

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Fresh Ideas to Motivate Kids to Practice

Need some new ways to motivate your child to practice their music? Here are some ideas to encourage your child to practice and learn to love playing music.

  1. Practice with Your Child
    Younger children are always looking for more mommy and daddy time. Why not sit down and go through their songs with them? They’ll be excited to show you what they know, and you can help them push through any difficult sections. Ask lots of questions, and let them be the expert! They’ll be excited to share what they know with you.
  2. Ask Your Teacher to Provide Specific Assignments
    Sometimes it’s easier if the practice instructions come from an outside authority.  A practice assignment with specifics on what to practice and for how long can help your child focus on what’s important.
  3. Find Additional Music That They Like to Play
    From Disney movies to Star Wars and pop songs, there are lots of music books available that could spark your child’s desire to learn. They’ll be excited when they begin to recognize the sound of the song as they’re practicing.
  4. Be Sure to Praise the Effort and Not the End Result
    Praise your child for the hard work they put into practicing, and not the success of their performance. There is a lot of research that suggests that praising the effort is more effective at encouraging them to practice than praising the result. It’s good to celebrate when they succeed, but too much focus on the end result can build anxiety, which will make them less likely to enjoy practicing.
  5. Post Positive Motivation Around the House
    There are lot of positive quotes and stories from both classical and popular musicians that can be found with a simple Google search. Why not post quotes on the refrigerator or bathroom mirror to encourage your child throughout the week? Knowing that accomplished musicians also need to practice could help to encourage your child when their practice time comes.

Here are Dance Pointe, we love positive, involved parents who want to help their children learn and succeed. Please don’t hesitate to check on your child’s progress, and ask what your teacher would recommend for their continued growth and learning.

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My Child Has the Flu – Should They Stay Home Today?

It’s winter once again, which means it gets dark at 5, you’ve got snow piling up outside, and it’s flu season. The flu virus causes upper respiratory infections, and can include symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. It is most often spread when a person with the flu sneezes, coughs or talks. It can be spread on surfaces, but this is less common.

If your child comes down with the flu, it’s best to keep them home from school and other activities for at least a few days. It’s recommended that you keep your child home for at least 24 hours after any fever has broken. This means that the fever has gone down on its own, and not with the aid of any medications. If they are still struggling with other symptoms, such as a persistent cough or runny/stuffy nose, they should also stay home until those symptoms clear up. 

It may seem harmless for a sick person to go back to their normal activities before they are completely well, but there are some for whom the flu could be quite dangerous. Children who are younger than five years of age, and those with asthma or other health disorders can become very ill if they contract the flu.   It can also be dangerous for pregnant women and the elderly. It’s important to remember who your child may come in contact with when deciding how soon they should resume their activities. 

We know that your children love their classes at Dance Pointe, and we love seeing them each week. However, if your child is sick please keep them home for a few days to get better. It’s important for them to get the rest that they need, and we’d like to keep our other students and teachers healthy. We’ll be excited to see them once again when they are well. Thank you!

Before we go, here’s a quick tip on how to properly wash your hands, which is one of the best ways to stop the spread of germs and to stay healthy.  Follow the steps below to wash your hands right every time.

    • Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold)
    • Turn off the tap and apply soap
    • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails.
    • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
    • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
    • Dry your hands using a clean towel

 

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Skills from the Stage

Our lives are all pretty busy these days. So, when it comes to finding activities for your children, you want something that makes the most out of the time that your family is investing. One activity that combines a fun experience for your child with important life skills is musical theater and drama. Check out our list of five skills learned on the stage to see how your child could grow from this experience.

  1. Self-Confidence
    Preparing a performance for the stage gives a child or young adult the opportunity to be in front of a crowd and speak in front of others. Through practice, they gain confidence in their ability to express themselves creatively, and to communicate with their peers and the audience. The trust that they develop in themselves will encourage them to attempt other new ventures, and they will find success when they are confident in their own abilities.
  2. Flexibility & Problem Solving
    We all know that life doesn’t always go according to plan, and kids who can learn to roll with the changes will experience less anxiety and adapt more quickly to those changes. Improvisational games and other drama teaching techniques help kids learn how to think on their feet, and how to work through mistakes. Learning to move past how things “were supposed to go,” and solve the problem in front of them is a great life skill to learn early on.
  3. Teamwork
    There is nothing quite like the feeling that comes from performing together on stage. The weeks of preparation and the rush of performing creates a bond between everyone involved. Students learn how to work together, solve problems and listen to one another. It also creates strong bonds and friendships that last well beyond the final bows.
  4. Language & Communication
    Learning new songs, memorizing a script and practicing their lines can help children and young adults to develop their vocabulary, project their voice so that others can hear them, and articulate words clearly so that they can be understood. In addition, they can also learn how to use facial expressions and body language to convey their character’s thoughts and feelings.
  5. Concentration
    It takes a lot of focus and concentration to learn lines, and to remember to stay “in character” throughout practice and a performance. Kids can learn how to stay in the moment while performing, and to block out various other distractions. This ability to center themselves and stay focused will be a huge asset to them in school and other areas of life.

If your child or young adult is ready to take the stage, please join us for Shrek the Musical, Jr. This show is a fun and twisted fairy tale that is adapted for young performers featuring a host of over-the-top roles for an expandable cast. With colorful sets and costumes, songs full of laughs and familiar characters, this show is a great choice for young performers.

Ready to take the stage? Join us at Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, January 10th at 6:30 pm, or on Friday, January 12th at 6:00 pm to audition for Shrek the Musical, Jr. We can’t wait for you to join us!

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Thank You and Happy Holidays

As we head into the heart of the holiday season, I wanted to take a moment to thank each of you for making this year so special. This past Saturday we wrapped another successful performance of Clara’s Holiday Dream, and I want to thank all of you for your help in bringing it all together. I love watching our students’ excited smiles as they get ready backstage. Their joyous energy is contagious, and I love the anticipation as they prepare to perform. I know the hard work that each of my students puts into their performance. I have seen many of them grow from tiny tot dancers into accomplished young dancers, and it is my joy to see them shine on stage and reach their goals.

Thank you to everyone who helped make Clara’s Holiday Dream happen this year. I greatly appreciate all of your help in bringing this production together. Life rarely slows down, especially at this time of the year, and I am grateful for the time you devote to helping our students and our studio.

On behalf of myself and the entire staff here at Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center, I would like to wish you and your family a wonderful holiday season. It’s my little one’s first Christmas, and I am so excited to watch him experience all of the magic and beauty of the holidays for the first time. May things slow down just a little for all of us, so that we can truly experience the joy of each other’s company and the love that we all have for one another.

Just a reminder that we will be on break from Sunday, December 24th through Monday, January 1st. Classes will resume on Tuesday, January 2nd.

 

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5 Steps to Battle the Butterflies

“But, Mom, I’m nervous!” This is something you  may hear as your child prepares for a dance performance or music recital. Even children and teenagers who have performed on stage before can struggle with nervousness before a performance. After dancing on stage for more than fifty years, Mikhail Baryshinkov has said that he still gets nervous before every performance.

However, even though being nervous before a performance is completely normal, it can still feel overwhelming and paralyzing for children. As a parent, how can you help your child to calm their nerves before a performance? Here are a few steps to help them take control of their butterflies.

  1. Breathe
    Deep breathing can have a tremendous calming effect on a racing mind and tense body. It lowers your heart rate and blood pressure, and releases nitric oxide, which increases your senses, endurance and strength. When a feeling of calm returns, a child is better able to move past their nervous thoughts and focus on the stage and their steps. They can do this quietly on their own right before going on stage, which gives them a tool to calm any last minute jitters.

*Check out this helpful article on breathing techniques for children and teens from The Mayo Clinic.

2.  Visualize
Have your child close their eyes and visualize what their performance will be like. Talk with them about the stage, the audience, the music, the lights and other elements of the performance. Have them visualize where they will be standing on stage, and the other dancers that will be around them. This can help your child prepare for what it will be like to be on stage.

3. Shake it Off
Don’t ignore the wisdom of Taylor Swift when dealing with nervous energy. Stretching and shaking out muscles before a performance can help young performers get rid of some of the adrenaline building up in their system, which helps to lessen nerves and increase calm feelings and focus.

4. Have a History Lesson
If your child or teenager has performed before, talk with them about those performances. Were they nervous before they went on stage before that dance or piece of music? What did they do to work through their fears then? Remind them of their past successes to help them tackle their current fears. They may just need a reminder to help them reclaim their confidence.

5. Tackle the “What ifs?”
Talk with your child in the weeks leading up to the performance to identify any “what if” fears they may have. One of the biggest may be, “What if I make a mistake?” If left unchecked, this can grow into a big fear inside a child’s head. Instead, talk through what would happen if they did make a mistake, and what they would do to get back on track. If they know what they will do in the event that a mistake happens, then they will be less nervous about this “what if,” and more able to move on should they stumble on stage. Chances are, it’s an unfounded fear that they can put behind them, and instead move ahead with the excitement of performing.

As your child’s teachers, we’re here to help! Let us know if your child is struggling with stage fright. It’s likely that we’ve already discovered this, and we are working with your child to move past those fears. It can be difficult for parents to see their children in situations where they are nervous and fearful, but facing those fears brings them more confidence in their abilities and pride in their hard work. It’s one of the reasons we believe in the power of the arts in your child’ s life.

Don’t forget that our holiday performance of Clara’s Holiday Dream is coming up this Saturday, December 16th at 6:00 pm at JFK Middle School. Click here to purchase tickets.

ballerina

 

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Holiday Gifts that Last

As a new parent, I am so excited for Christmas! Watching my little one experience his first Christmas with all of the lights, music and gifts from loved ones will be a lasting memory.  Speaking of gifts, now that I’m a parent, I’m finding out just how many questions parents have when it comes to choosing presents for their kids. Will my little one play with and learn from this toy, or will it be forgotten in the corner? Will this stand up to all of his baby energy, or is it going to be broken in a month? With all of the baby gear and other baby must-haves filling up my home, I’m starting to wonder how it’s all going to fit!

When they’re young, children need toys and games to stimulate their little minds. However, as they grow it’s also important for them to acquire experiences as well as tangible gifts. These experiences can include family vacations, trips to local museums, sporting events and lessons designed to teach a skill and inspire them creatively.

One great experience that you can give to your child is the opportunity to learn to play a music instrument, dance or play a part on stage. As a dance teacher and studio owner for many years, I know the positive impact that the performing arts can have in a child’s life. Kids who participate in the arts perform better in school, and develop creativity, responsibility, and diligence.  They also form strong bonds with their teachers who impart so much more than the steps in a dance or the notes on a page. As their teachers, we watch them grow over the years, and work hard to help them achieve their goals.   Students can also develop strong friendships with their fellow students that provide lots of laughs, encouragement and camaraderie as they grow.

I would love for your child to experience the arts at Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center.  We offer a variety of classes in dance, music and drama, and I’m sure that you’ll find one that your child will love.  We are so grateful to work with each child to pursue their goals and discover new skills.

We’re currently offering a discount on class Gift Certificates for the holiday season, which will fit nicely into a stocking or a box under the tree. You can purchase these at the studio, or via the link below. This is a great way to provide your child with an enriching experience that they will carry with them through their childhood and beyond.

CLICK HERE to purchase class gift certificates on the Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center website.

Pile of Presents

The Power of Friendship in Dance, Drama & Music

I’m sure we can all look back on our childhood and remember those friends that were always there by our side. Whether they lived down the street, sat next to us in school, or played with us on a team, they became an important part of the years we spent growing up. Another great place for children to make lasting friendships is in dance, drama and music classes. The bonds formed at the barre, learning lines and memorizing notes help kids and young people through the best and worst times. Keep reading for a few more reasons why we believe in the power of friendships formed in the studio. 

A Shared Love of Dance, Music and Drama
There is nothing more fun than finding someone who loves the same things that you do. For a kid who loves all things ballet, how excited are they to meet someone else who is focused on her turns and counts the day she gets her pointe shoes as important as the day she gets her driver’s license. Or, a drama kid who finds friends who love working on new characters, and the way they feel when they step out on stage. Finding your tribe is important at every stage of life, and it begins in childhood. Participating in dance, music and drama classes gives your creative child the chance to meet others and to make friends who see and experience the world as they do. That is a powerful thing. 

Do you Remember When?
A lot of things can change as a child grows up, which makes a studio filled with friends and teachers that they can count on very important. While some activities last for a season or semester, studio friends can perform and grow together for years. They may start as wobbly little girls in tutus waving to their parents from the stage, and then grow into graceful and poised young ladies who hit their mark and point their toes every time. Students who take a little extra time to find the notes in “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” will grow into confident musicians tackling difficult pieces of music with ease.  Friends who face these ups and downs together, will play a positive role in the lives of their friends. The friendships that are forged across these years through many practices, dress rehearsals, and performances will last because of the many memories and life events that they encompass.

Working Together
Working together to attain a goal is exciting and empowering. A friend by your side is so helpful when you’re trying to learn a new step, or memorize all of your lines. Good friends can also push one another to do their best in ways that parents and teachers cannot. Studies have shown the powerful bonds that develop between dancers as they perform the same steps together, and the synchronicity that it brings to them both on stage and off.

Accountability
Sometimes we’re all tempted to slack off a bit, or just do the minimum to get by. Of course, as parents we want our children to work hard no matter how they feel, and to learn to push themselves even when they just don’t want to. Good friends are a great motivator who can encourage each other to do their best even on the days when they would prefer to lie on the couch. Moreover, knowing that your fellow musicians, dancers and actors are counting on you to perform your best is a great motivation to do your best in every class and lesson.

We’re thankful for the friendships that we see every day between our students at Dance Pointe PAC. And, we’re happy to provide a place where they can grow and flourish in both their pursuits and their friendships. If you know someone who would love to find their studio home, please invite to join us for Bring A Friend Week, Monday, October 1st through Saturday, October 6th. New friends can try out classes for free all week! Stop by the front desk to pick up a postcard to invite them to join us. Also, share and tag them in a Dance Pointe Bring a Friend Week post on Facebook or Twitter. We can’t wait to meet them!

What’s in your Dance Bag? – Getting Your Child Ready for a New Season of Dance

As we prepare for the upcoming 2018-2019 dance season at Dance Pointe, we want your child to have everything they need to start off the dance year right. To help with that, here is a list of the items they will need in their dance bag.

Dance Apparel
It’s important for your child to have the correct attire for each dance class. These clothes allow for flexibility and movement, which is necessary for participation in dance class. Check out the list below for guidelines on what to wear in each class.

Twinkle Babies and Stars

Twinkle Tutu Dress and Matching Bear

  • Twinkle Babies Creative Movement Ages 2 to 3 – Pink Tutu Dress and Matching Bear
  • Twinkle Stars Combo I Ages 3 to 4- Purple Tutu Dress and Matching Bear
  • Twinkle Stars Combo II Ages 5 to 8- Blue Tutu Dress and Matching Bear

Ballet, Tap Jazz, Lyrical, Modern, Acro and Pointe Classes

Girls:

  • A Black Leotard can be a Tank, Short, or Long Sleeves
  • A Black Dance Short or Dance Skirt (Optional)
  • Dance Shorts for Tap, Jazz, Lyrical and Acro Classes (Optional)
  • A Black or Pink Biketard for Acro Classes

Boys:

  • Fitted White, Short-sleeved T-Shirt
  • Black Dance Pants

Hip Hop Classes

  • Fitted T-Shirt or Tank
  • Leggings, Loose Dance Pants

Dance Shoes
If you’re new to dance class, you may not know that different styles of shoes are required for different types of dance. Here’s a breakdown of the types of shoes each class requires:

Twinkle Star and Ballet:
Girls:

  • Pink Leather or Canvas Full Sole or Split Sole Ballet Slippers and Tan Tap Shoes

Boys:

  • White Leather or Canvas Full or Split Sole Ballet Shoes with White Ankle Socks

Tap: Black Tap Shoes
Jazz: Tan Jazz Shoes
Lyrical: Tan Lyrical Thongs/Sandals
Acro: Bare Feet
Pointe: – Pointe Shoes
Hip Hop: Dance Sneakers

Our online Dress Code Class Lists will help you find the correct leotard, body-wear and shoes for class, visit our online storehttps://www.shopnimbly.com/Dancepointepac . Simply use the drop down menu to find your child’s dress code based on the class(es) registered for, and you will be taken to a list of items for each class that you can purchase online in just a few minutes. Use the Size Chart Guides for accuracy, and feel free to contact us via email or Facebook if you have specific sizing questions.

3. Extra Hair Ties and Hair Pins
It’s important for your child to have their hair pulled back for each class. A small bag with a brush, extra hair ties and hair pins will help them keep their hair up and off of their face.
4. Tights
Tights are required for most dance classes. It’s helpful to keep an extra pair of tights in their dance bag should something happen to their other pair.
5. Water Bottle and Healthy Snacks
A refillable water bottle and healthy snacks can keep your child feeling strong throughout their classes. Try to include snacks that are easy to eat, and don’t make a mess. Make sure your child knows the studio guidelines on where and when it’s acceptable for them to eat and drink.

What not to include?

Your child needs to be focused when they attend dance class, and keeping a few things out of their dance bag will help them to pay better attention. Make sure they leave all cell phones, tablets and other electronic devices with you. These cause a big distraction during and in-between classes, and take away from their interactions with friends and teachers.

A dance bag can also be a great way for your child to take responsibility for their classes, and to teach them the importance of preparing ahead of time. Ask them to empty out their dance bag after class, place their dirty clothes in the laundry, and throw out any trash. Then, work with them to replace the items they will need for their next class including clothes, shoes, water and snacks. Keeping their shoes in their dance bag is a great way for them to keep track of them in-between classes. Developing a routine around their dance bag will help them to learn to be prepared for class, and will take some of the work off of your already full plate!

All of the teachers and staff at Dance Pointe Performing Arts Center cannot wait to welcome you and your child back to the studio for fall classes. If you have any questions regarding attire, shoes, sizing, or other studio guidelines please contact us or stop by the front desk.