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.

Fall registration will only be as good as your last recital!

Registration Will Only Be As Good As Your Last Recital

“Your fall registration will only be as good as your last recital!” These words were often repeated by my mother, who believed that the quality of a recital had much to do with a school’s success. I think of those words every time the topic of recitals comes up at my seminars.

Rhee Responds to a Parent Question

Dear Rhee, Recently I saw that you answer readers’ questions. I’m hoping that you’ll have an answer for me. I have a 7-year-old daughter who has developed tap-dancing skills way beyond what her classmates can do. The other kids in her class have to keep repeating what they learned in previous classes, and my daughter is always ready to move on. When I approached the teacher about my concerns, she told me that my daughter was in the right class and suggested that if she really wants to be a dancer she should start taking ballet and jazz classes. I’m…

Find the Real Win in Dance Competition

Find the Real Win in Competition

by Rhee Gold As we begin a new competition season, let’s remember that our goal should be to instill in our students a passion for performing rather than merely the desire to win awards. The satisfaction of an excellent performance is all the inspiration we and our students need to work harder and continue improving. We shouldn’t judge our students’ performances on the size of the trophies or the color of the medals they take home. And we shouldn’t judge ourselves or our abilities as teachers, mentors, and leaders by the results of a competition. Our students’ participation in competitions…

Gregg Russell Teaching Tips

Gregg Russell Teaching Tips: Slides & Warm-Up

Teaching tap slides can be trickier than you think. Most students like to lift their heels off the ground and straighten their legs when they slide; however, doing this makes it harder to control the slide and maximize its length. Three rules to guide them: feet flat (helps maintain balance); plié (makes sliding on a challenging surface like marley easier); and weight evenly distributed (helps with connecting the slide to the next step).

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…