So you signed your child up for dance. Now what? Here is a 1st dance class check list:
Make sure to arrive on time for your 1st dance class and every class after! (Or 10 min early). Remember what it feels like to enter a classroom when class has already begun? Everyone is looking at you, you haven’t made any friends yet and somehow you already feel like you’ve missed out. Nobody likes to be late and children especially crave routine and familiarity. Visiting the dance studio prior to the first class so that your child can familiarize themselves and feel more comfortable is a great idea. To avoid feelings of anxiety, arrive early, be prepared, and let the situation build up around your child. Talk about their first class before the big day, meet the teacher if possible or check out their picture/bio on the studio’s website. The more prepared your child feels the smoother the first dance class will go.
2. Dress Code – Make sure you have all the proper dance attire and shoe requirements. If a list was not given to you, call or ask at the front desk. Every studio has their own policies, make sure to know yours.
3. Hair – Every dancer and dance parent will need to now how to make a “ballet bun”. With sock buns and top knots being in style now, there are plenty of tutorials online. Practice makes perfect. Start with your 1st dance class and come recital you will be a pro! Things you will need: a hair brush, hair elastics, bobby pins, hair net and hair gel/spray.
4. Bring water to every class. If your child is at the dance studio for more than one class, please send them with a healthy snack (NUT FREE) to keep their energy up.
5. Label EVERYTHING – all shoes and clothing should be labelled to avoid losing items.
6. Dance bag – For those dancers with different shoes and tights to keep track of, a dance bag is extremely helpful. An extra pair of tights, a small screw driver (for tap shoes), extra hair elastics/pins, and an extra leotard are also good ideas to have in your dance bag.
7. If you have Ballet shoes: learn how to properly sew and cut the elastics PRIOR TO YOUR 1ST DANCE CLASS. If you are a first timer, please consult someone who can properly show you how this is done.
8. Be prepared to leave your tiny dancer in the class room. Yes, sometimes they will cry, but only for a moment. It is a much easier transition for the child when they are not able to see their parents waiting at the door. You have at least 45 min – take advantage, get a mani/pedi or grab a coffee with a friend!
9. Talk about what happened in class. Kids love to show off what they’ve learned! Encourage practicing at home and ask if any homework was given.
10. Remember that dance is FUN – you don’t want to get caught up the the competitive world of “dance moms”!