Personal Best

Improv Freeze Dance

Improv Freeze Dance

by Holly Derville-Teer One day I had 15 minutes to spare at the end of a beginner jazz class for 7- to 11-year-olds. “What am I going to do for 15 minutes?” I thought. Then I remembered my days teaching 5- to 6-year-olds and it hit me: freeze dance! I needed to create an older…

Making Peace with the Mirror

Making Peace With the Mirror

by Sandi Duncan It’s a new day of classes and you’re ready to share what you know and love. You’ve chosen your music, created your combos, and put on your workout attire. You enter the empty dance space, set up your music, and glance in the mirror. “Whoa! Wait, is that me?” you wonder. “Have…

Dealing with Doubt

Dealing With Doubt

by Suzanne Martin, PT, DPT Make a positive impression by nurturing a strong self-image Successful teaching demands that the instructor take command of her material and her classroom with authority. This can be tough, especially when you’re just launching a teaching career. Think about when you first started teaching. Did you come roaring out of…

What We Gain by Losing

What We Gain By Losing

Although I discourage using the word “lose,” it’s the best way to make my point. Some of the smartest and brightest people got that way from losing many of their battles. We learn from the losing process or by not getting what we want. It’s how we improve ourselves.

Look for the Little You

Look For The Little You

When I do my seminars, I always ask, “How many of you were the best dancer in your class?” In groups as large as 500, only one or two people raise their hands, and sometimes no one does.

Imagine the Collective Success

Imagine the Collective Success

As a teenager, I remember overhearing a group of dance teachers at a dance convention get all fired up about the recent rumor they had heard about another dance teacher (who was not there, of course).

Dance Teachers Are Special People

Dance Teachers Are Special People

How long has it been since you caught your reflection in the mirror and thought about how happy you are just to be you?

Who is Fierce

Who is Fierce?

They don’t perform grand leaps, not one fouetté turn nor a single pirouette, and there’s no flash at all. Yet you watch them with your mouth open, while that head-to-toe body chill takes over your full being for a few moments as you settle into the greatness before your eyes.

It’s the Day After a Long Competition

It’s the Day After a Long Competition

by Rhee Gold It’s the day after a long competition. Maybe your dancers did excellent, and maybe they didn’t? Either way, don’t make that what matters most post-competition. Ask your dancers, “What was your favorite piece from another school?” Share with them something you liked about someone else’s work. Ask them, “What do you feel…

Dont Judge

Don’t Judge

by Rhee Gold It is important to realize that students’ lack of interest might have nothing to do with the teacher or the material. They could be dealing with life issues such as divorce, conflicts in the home, problems with friends, or abusive situations. Whatever the circumstance, dance can allow students to forget their personal…

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