Dance Life Magazine Online

A collection of articles, thought-provoking commentary, classroom tips and strategies, smart business concepts, advice, and more. As always, Rhee Gold and his team will offer content to challenge the dance education field to hold each other and every student in high regard.

Leaps and Bounds Above

Leaps and Bounds Above the Other 4-Year-Olds

by Rhee Gold Hi Rhee, I am a dance teacher/studio owner, and I have come across the most persistent parents I have ever met in all my years of teaching dance (20-plus)—or school, for that matter. (I taught kindergarten for 12 years.) These parents have a daughter who turned 4 last spring. They are angry with me and some of my teachers because I will not allow them to enroll their daughter in the beginning ballet class for 6- to 8-year-olds. My teachers and I have tried to explain that although the child is coordinated for a 4-year-old, she is…

Special Needs Teaching Advice

Special Needs Teaching Advice

by Tricia Gomez Finding the Just-Right Challenge We’ve all experienced walking into a dance class as a student and finding it beyond our understanding or abilities. Maybe the teacher teaches too fast, uses unfamiliar terminology, or asks you to do something that requires more flexibility than you have. Or you’re excited to take a workshop—only to find out that it’s intended for beginners. But you’ve paid for the class, so you stick it out. If we’re able to self-regulate effectively, we can maintain self-control and behave appropriately in these undesirable situations. But individuals who have difficulty self-regulating may react to…

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?

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 that we need to work harder at?” I could go on with the questions, but you get my drift. It takes total confidence in who you are and what you believe to “rave” about others accomplishments, and to know where you truly stand. Teach kids…

We Are Each Unique

We Are Each Unique

by Rhee Gold As dance studio owners, let us recognize that each of us and our businesses are unique in personality, history and what we have to offer our communities. We encourage teachers to always continue their own education to ensure that they offer their students the best possible “dance experience.” With that said, let us not judge each other, or focus all our attention on the school up the street. Certainly, there are teachers who make awesome dancers and then there are those who do the once-a-week thing, and there are those somewhere between. Know that parents (our clientele)…

Opinion Better Behavior Better Convention

Opinion: Better Behavior = Better Conventions

by Erik Saradpon As the popularity of dance has increased, so too has dance convention attendance. As an educator, I’m fortunate to experience conventions from both sides: I take my students to conventions frequently, and I also teach at conventions. But I’ve noticed some convention behavior that needs to be addressed. I want convention teachers, studio teachers, and parents to put students’ needs first, and I have some ideas about how to make that happen. Here are the points I think we should consider: Let’s take convention classes seriously Class is the most sacred part of a child’s growth as…

Teacher Talk Parent Teacher Conferences

Teacher Talk: Parent-Teacher Conferences

Parent-Teacher Conferences Q: I’ve always been very open and available to discuss a student’s progress when parents have concerns, and during optional end-of-year conversations. But I have some mothers who request parent conferences every couple of months. I have to spend time not only holding these conferences, but collecting pertinent info from multiple teachers. Should I set some sort of yearly maximum for parent conferences? —Dee Buchanan A: Our policy is that parents must email or phone in their concerns and questions. The director will then decide if a meeting is necessary. Parents cannot request meetings. Before this policy, I…

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