Tips for Selecting the Right Dance School for Your Child

DancePoise Staff Sep 29, 2018
If you want to channel your child's boundless energy into something constructive, then dance classes are a good option. Dancing helps improve physical health and self-esteem of the child. Choosing a good dance class can spark the child's creativity and teach him/her to appreciate dancing.
"Kids: they dance before they learn there is anything that isn't music."
―William Edgar Stafford
Do you have an overactive child who is yearning for some great after-school activity? If yes, then you should definitely consider dancing as an extracurricular activity for the kid. From learning a new skill, to improving coordination and making new friends, dance school can be the perfect place to harness a kid's toe-tapping energy.
However, dance classes are usually quite expensive, and parents can have a tough time choosing the right class especially if they have no idea about where to start.
Song and dance can play a crucial role in the physical and emotional development of the child. Therefore, choosing the right dance school is imperative if you want the child to receive proper training and have an enriching experience.
Knowing what to look for when choosing the right school will help in asking the right questions. Do not be floored by dance trophies and 'experienced' teachers. The right school or organization should focus on harnessing and refining a child's natural ability. We provide some simple tips to choose a dance school for your kid.

How to Choose a Dance School for Your Child

The Dance Style

Is your child a jumping hip-hop dancer or a graceful ballerina? It is important to judge the child's interests in different dance forms while choosing a dance school. Before you begin your search, try to find the different dance forms that your child may be interested.
At the dance school, ask about the dance forms that they teach. Most schools offer dance classes and lessons in a variety of popular styles like jazz, tap, and ballet.
While choosing a dance style, it is extremely important to involve the child in the process. While you may love classical dance forms like ballet, the child may be more interested in hip-hop or Latin dancing. Some parents also opt for combination classes where the child is exposed to multi dance form, allowing him or her to choose the style they like.

The Instructor's Background

You have to consider the credentials and background of the school faculty. The teacher should have considerable performing and training experience. He or she should be professionally-trained in the dance style, and should also possess experience of performing with a reliable dance company.
Apart from knowledge about the dance form, the teacher needs to be caring, patient, and disciplined enough to teach young children.

The Class Size

Look for a class with fewer pupils. When many students, teachers find difficult to pay personal attention to each student. This results in poor development of the dance fundamentals and improper technique.
Especially true for children in preschool, who require close attention. For children aged six and above, there should be around ten to twelve students in a class. When there are less number of students and more space for dancing, the children get adequate opportunity to practice their dance form.

Training Style

Every dance school has a different training style and philosophy.
Some are serious about form and correct technique, while others teach in a more casual, laid back attitude. Whatever be the training style, it is important that quality education is provided.

Reputation of the Dance School

The best ways of knowing about a dance school is to ask around. Parents whose kids are taking dance classes can provide proper feedback about the school. You can also ask neighbors, friends, and colleagues for references.

Facilities Provided

The dance studio should be large enough to accommodate the class size. It should have high ceiling clearance for lifts and full-length mirrors on the long wall of the studio. If it is a ballet studio, then it should have two to three secure and sturdy bars.
One essential facility should be a proper dancing floor. Usually, sprung dance floors covered in Marley are preferred in quality dance studios. These foam-covered flooring absorb the shock of landings and prevent slipping and important for the safety of the child. Other facilities to look are changing rooms and bathrooms, which should be clean and orderly.

The Number of Recitals

Most dance studios have year-end shows or recitals. These shows allow students to show off their moves, and provides parents an insight into how far the kid has learned the dance form.
Some studios expect the parents to get the costumes made while others order the costumes, making it hassle-free for parents. Do ask about the costumes and recital fees, as these added expenses can be significantly high.

Payment

Ask about class fees, registration fees, costs of the performances that the child is expected to participate in, and average cost of any extra equipment, if needed. It is also a good idea to add up the costs and then select the best class for the child.

Location

Is the dance studio located nearby, or is it nearly two suburbs away? Will traveling to-and-fro affect the child's study and play time? You need to look into these important factors when choosing the dance studio for your child.
If you are choosing classes for a toddler of say three to four years, then it is important to understand that the kid may not be physically and mentally ready for advanced level dance programs.
You need to ensure that the dance school has special programs designed for younger kids to help them learn the basic steps and positions. When choosing a dance school, do make it a point to visit the place and watch the classes. This gives you a good idea of whether the school is good for your child or not.