Dancing Holidays: HALLOWEEN

Halloween is a holiday that nearly all of my dancers get excited about! It is (almost) universally  inclusive, and I find that the same children who are attracted to dance class are attracted to Halloween for the make-believe & the crazy costumes. Below are my picks for bringing Halloween into the dance classroom…or dance into … Continue reading

6 Class Management (Discipline) Tips With Young Ones

At my studio, regular year classes have been in session for a month now, and so naturally some of my young students’ “first days of school” attention to extra-good behavior is wearing off as they get more comfortable in their surroundings. Time for–6 Class Management (Discipline) Tips with Young Ones…in this case, meaning about ages … Continue reading

6 Costumes for the New School Year

Dancers & dance teachers on a school year schedule are heading back into the studio to meet their new classes. I always use the week before classes start to round up some new music and peruse some of the latest costumes to get re-inspired. I won’t be picking out any “June Show” music & costumes … Continue reading

4 More Infectious Books for Little Dancers

Unfortunately, not all dance-themed books actually invite children to get up and dance….but many do! A previous Unreasonable Joy post — Move “From Head to Toe” with an Eric Carle Book — introduced one of my favorite books to get young children wiggling and moving. Now here are 4 more books to read at home or … Continue reading

So You Want: Peppy, Smart Music for Kids? – Laurie Berkner

…check out The Laurie Berkner Band at laurieberkner.com. She regularly appears on Nick, Jr. with fun video versions of her “kindie rock” songs. You can find many of these on YouTube. I like her songs because they are often rhythmically and musically interesting with alternating paces and multiple instrument lines to keep little ears interested. … Continue reading

So You Want: Calm, Smart Music for Kids? – Brent Holmes

….check out Brent Holmes at FunTunesForKids.net. His music has been compared to that of Jimmy Buffet, James Taylor, and Raffi. I stumbled upon him during one of my many iTunes searches for kids music that I can imagine possibly listening to over, and over, and over, and….. Here are 2 of my favorite Brent Holmes … Continue reading

Move “From Head to Toe” with an Eric Carle Book

I love to show children my love of reading, so when my young dancers need a rest, I often pull out a book for a quick story time. Sometimes the transition back to dancing can be a rough one if the kids are particularly drained…but not with this book! Top 3 Reasons I Love From … Continue reading

3 Ways to Freeze Dance – Without “Outs”

Children seem to LOVE Freeze Dance… . …and I seem to hate being a “judge” of who is moving or not after the music stops. I’m all for games, but I prefer to play games that reinforce what we’re learning in class and ones allow everyone to participate for the entire time, rather than having … Continue reading

Get Them Tapping with a Bojangles Book!

I love this book.  I love the writing, the rhythm, the brevity, the pictures, the subject…love.  The first time I read it, I was having a horrible substitute teaching day at an Oakland elementary school and this book was a little beacon on the reading rack. I read it to the kids, and went home … Continue reading

Found: Children’s Song & Hand Game Database

In the Reference Links section on the sidebar of Unreasonable Joy there is a website I just can’t let you overlook. The King County Library System in Washington state has complied an amazing database of children’s rhymes, games, and songs here…including many videos like the 2 gems below, both illustrating the song, “Bananas, Unite!” Enjoy!  … Continue reading

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