Lovely Picture Book Tribute to the “Madeline” Books: Miss Lina’s Ballerinas

Two Gems for Dancing, Book-Loving Families Miss Lina’s Ballerinas and Miss Lina’s Ballerinas and the Prince Pay Homage to Ludwig Bemelman’s Madeline Books Even casual acquaintances of the beloved Madeline series may remember well the famous opening rhyme: In an old house in Paris that was covered in vines Lived twelve little girls in two … Continue reading

Sydney Studio Doing Pre-Ballet (and marketing) Right

Found: Big Steps Little Feet An Australian Dance Studio with an Inspiring Focus on Creative and Brain-Based Dance for Pre-Schoolers (and some really catchy marketing materials) After wasting a few moments of my life on a bogus top ten list for why some mom was enrolling her kid in pre-ballet, I found a gem of … Continue reading

Philadelphia Chickens: The Imaginary Children’s Broadway Musical Revue that I Could Play on Repeat

A torch song to chocolate chip cookies. A diva’s belting song about the pleasure of being contrary. A jazzy pajama time dance party. There is a lot to love about Philadelphia Chickens: A Too-Illogical Zoological Musical Revue from Sandra Boynton and Micheal Ford!!! From Amazon.com: Grammy nominee. #1 New York Times bestseller. And, with 960,000 … Continue reading

Rhythm & Isolations with the Picture Book: Cha-Cha Chimps

I fell for Cha-Cha Chimps the first time I read it to my son. This raucous little rhyming countdown book by Julia Durango (illustrated by Eleanor Taylor) is made for little movers. (Recommended for preschool through lower grade classes…ages 2-9.)   Like the Bojangles book Rap A Tap Tap (which I blog about here), Cha-Cha … Continue reading

So You Want: Showtunes-Style Jazz Music for Kids? –Cool Jazz Cats

Highly Recommended: Cool Jazz Cats by Maria Bostick   Included on the back of the album is the praise: “A fun frothy ice cream soda of a record…the melodies and rhythms are irresistible!” [Family Fun Magazine] –and I couldn’t agree more! Cool Jazz Cats has a Broadway feel and stays on the right side of … Continue reading

5 Modern Dance Books

5 beautiful books to introduce dancers to modern dance, dance history and famous dance artists. Enjoy! The Human Alphabet ~Pilobolus  “An alphabet made of… PEOPLE!” ~ A fun book for dancers young and old. Pilobolus dancers use their bodies and colorful costumes to make all the letters of the alphabet and a picture for each … Continue reading

Teaching Meaningful Apologies

What makes a “good” apology? How can a child “say it like they mean it” if they haven’t yet learned how to “mean it”? How much class time should a dance teacher take up with working through apologies when we have so much choreography and technique to get through in an hour?   The schedule … Continue reading

Nutcracker Apps – For Apple & Android

Here are two apps–the first for Apple and Android, the second for Apple only–worthy of a child’s imagination. Nutcracker App #1 The Nutcracker Musical Storybook    from Mouse King Media  Find this App for: iPhone/iPad, Kindle, &  Nook. The Nutcracker Musical Storybook is a gorgeous digital book with Edward Gorey-ish drawings, pleasingly simple animation on each page, and … Continue reading

So You Want: Musical Dance Stories for Kids? — Wee Sing

Teaching classes with young children? You’ll need a few go-to tracks; tracks that allow you to just push play and then dance through a story along with your little dancers.  Start Here!   Story Tracks with Clips of Classical Orchestra Music: 10 – The Toy Shop at Midnight 21 – A Walk Through the Forest … Continue reading

How I Introduce The Nutcracker – Jeffers’ Book

Late summer might seem an odd time to be posting about The Nutcracker, unless of course you are a dancer or dance teacher and you have already been making early preparations for the holiday show for months now.  The Nutcracker is the most famous and accessible of the full-length ballets. The studio where I teach presents … Continue reading

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