A Fine and Performing Arts Magnet Cluster School

Dance

The Ravenswood Dance Program seeks to nurture students as movers, thinkers, creators and performers as students investigate and experiment with movement, learn the fundamentals of dance technique, explore various dance styles, build and choreograph dances, and present and perform their learning for others. Dance builds creative thinking, problem solving and collaboration skills. Learning through movement allows students to build kinesthetic connections as they experience the world around them, while encouraging a creative outlet for expression.

During dance class, students in every grade experience what it’s like to be choreographers, performers and audience members. Below is a brief description of dance class specific to each grade-level band:

  • Pre-K through 2nd-grade dance classes focus on creative movement, including spatial awareness, dancing fast and slow, creating shapes, freeze dancing to various music, creating patterns in dance, and more! Students in grades Pre-K through 2nd should wear gym shoes to dance class and be ready to move and have fun!
  • 3rd-4th grade students learn about the basic elements of dance, universal dance concepts, and spend the majority of their class time exploring different dance styles including jazz, ballet, hip hop and modern dance forms. Students learn the basic fundamentals of these styles, research the history of the dance form and its artists, learn and create choreography within each style, and present work for their peers and in school showcases. Students in grades 3rd-4th should wear gym shoes with socks to dance class and be prepared to dance in gym shoes for some dance forms and in socks or bare feet for others. New socks are available for those that need. Dance shoes are provided for specific dance styles.
  • 5th-8th grade students will participate in elective courses for enrichment classes. The dance electives include deep investigations in specific dance styles, studying dance work from specific artists and choreographers, the history and impact of dance in our culture, or creating collaborative work in a variety of settings. All of these courses have a heavy focus on dance-making and the creative process. Students should come to class with gym shoes and socks, and be prepared to dance in gym shoes for some dance forms and in socks or bare feet for others. New socks are available for those that need. Dance shoes are provided for specific dance styles.

In addition to our growing dance program, Ms. Reed also creates and teaches arts integrated units with classroom teachers, incorporating movement concepts with those in language arts, mathematics, social studies and science. Recently, Ms. Reed and the first grade team created a unit integrating studies of space, the planets, and patterns within our solar system with explorations of shape, energy, size, level, speed and patterns in movement. Students investigated topics of orbit, rotation, pattern and more through both movement and traditional research. Ms. Reed also created a unit with the middle school science department integrating dance and movement concepts with studies of force and motion. Students investigated Newton’s Laws through movement explorations and connected their dance learning and science learning.

Ms. Reed brings over 13 years of dance education experience to Ravenswood. Outside of her work at Ravenswood Ms. Reed is a mentor teaching artist at Design Dance, a director of a summer day camp, and a practicing modern dancer and stilt dancer. She holds a Master’s of Art in Teaching and a Bachelor of Science.

If you have any questions about the dance program or your child’s class, please check out her website at http://www.msreeddanceclass.com/.

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