Adventures In Pre School Dance Review

adventures in pre school dance

I have just bought myself Adventures In Pre School Dance, Imaginative Series, Volume 3 and am suitably impressed.adventures in pre school dance

I was getting a bit sick of all my existing themes, ideas, and music, so when I saw this collection by Andrew Holdsworth I decided to give it a try.

There is nothing quite like revamping your classes with new music and ideas to give your teaching a boost.

My Take On Adventures in Pre School Dance

This music is great for both little ones and slightly older ones, as it isn’t the traditional piano music used for ballet, but a combination of many exciting instruments used together, and the kids love the sounds.

I decided to try the volume. This Adventures In Pre School Dance Music has 30 pieces of music and is 49 minutes long. I ended up purchasing the entire album as I couldn’t decide which tunes the pre school dance children would love best.

The first part of the album is related to the seasons – Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, which is a class on its own, and you can make it very educational for the children. There are about four songs for each season with ideas you can use e.g. Minuet in the Sunshine (for summer).

Towards the end of the CD, there are a couple of musical and acting games for the children to play. My class especially enjoyed the Rock Star, Soldier or Footballer? game. This teaches the children to really listen to the music and recognize what to do to what type of music.

The joy of buying this music online is that you don’t need to buy the entire album. You can simply pick whichever music you want and pay per track.

I will definitely look at growing my collection further with more of Andrew Holdsworth’s music.

These are some of the titles available online for immediate download. You can click on the pics to listen to samples of the tracks.

pre school dancepre school dancepre school dance

Please comment below if you have tried teaching with Adventures in Pre School Dance and let us all know how it went.

 

Dance Lesson Plan For 3 – 5 Year Old Class

dance lesson plan

If you are looking for a dance lesson plan for your little ballerinas, then here is one that I use quite often with a circus theme, and the kids love it.

This is the 4th dance lesson plan that I have placed on this blog for baby ballerinas. You can find a list of the other ones by clicking here.

The Circus Dance Lesson Plan

dance lesson plan

To warm the children up we sit in a circle on the floor and put on our make up.

In this way, we can work the posture, fingers, and hands. We can then get dressed in our costumes and while we are doing this we can warm up other parts of the body like shoulders, feet, hips etc.

Next, you will need a nice bright piece of circus music so that they can parade around the circus ring showing off all their costumes. Here you can incorporate walks on the toes, runs, low walks, stretched walks and even be certain circus animals.

Ideas you can use for the rest of your dance lesson plan:

From this point of the class, it changes each time I do it. We just show the various circus acts. You can also have an interval where the children get to buy candy floss and popcorn to eat. You could also buy a balloon. Bring one to class and see if the children can keep it from falling to the floor.

Here are some of the things that I do with the children. You won’t fit them all in, but you can vary and make different each time you use this dance lesson plan or theme.

  1. Tightrope Walkers – let them balance on a line and walk on their toes. They can mime almost falling off and then walking again. older children can try and do a leap and say on the line.
  2. Clowns – They can lie on their backs and cycle their feet like they are riding their bike. This is excellent for their tummy muscles. With clowns, they could either do funny faces, do their own dance or do funny walks. The possibilities are endless.
  3. Ponies – This is a great way for them to learn pony trots, pdance lesson planony gallops, and pony walks. Children also love to ride each other using a skipping rope.
  4. Trapeze Artists – They can work with partners facing each other here and hold hands. You can teach them to sway from side to side and gallop across the room holding on to each other.
  5. Poodles – Here you can get them to strengthen their upper bodies by walking on their hands and feet. Hoola hoops can also be used there for them to crawl through or jump over.
  6. Acrobats – Here we can strengthen our cores and practice things like rolls, cartwheels, handstands and backward rolls. Make sure to supervise the children well here.
  7. Magicians – I usually use a hat for this one as a prop. Some of the children can be the magicians and the other half can be bunnies hopping out of the hat or doves flying out of the hat.

At the end of our Circus dance lesson plan, we can make a ‘parade’ walking around the ring and waving goodbye and curtseying to the audience.

Pre Ballet Class Ideas – A Visit To The Park

pre ballet class ideas

Here are some more fun pre ballet class ideas that I use and the children simply love. This one centers around visiting a park, and all the things that you can do there. I use this for my 3yrs and 4 yrs ballet pupils, varying the steps according to what they can do.

Pre Ballet Class Ideas

A Visit To The Park

pre ballet class ideas

Before we go to the park, we pack our picnic baskets, and the children each choose something to put into the basket. You can carry one big basket, or give each child their own basket.

The children then travel to the park. They can do this in a number of ways:

  • Skip
  • Run
  • Catch a Train
  • Drive a Car
  • Even fly in a plane.

Once they get to the park, we discover that it is just way to early and the park is closed. We are very impatient, so we decide to run and leap over the fence. I usually lay a long scarf on the floor and the children run and leap in a free manner over the scarf. I encourage them to use their arms to help them to jump higher.

Once we are all over the fence, there is a hill going down into the park, so to get to the park faster, we roll down the hill with our arms above our heads and our legs and feet glued together. This is an excellent way to strengthen their tummy muscles. Don’t forget to roll both ways.

On the way to the swings, we admire all the pretty flowers and the children show me how the flowers grow, by curling up as small as tiny seeds and then growing slowly into beautiful flowers. I let them all pick what color flower they want to be.

The next part I normally alternate. Sometimes we see bunnies, in which case we practice our bunny jumps, and other times we see butterflies or birds, in which case we fly on the tips of our toes.

After that we are hungry, so we make a picnic and eat, usually in a circle and I encourage the children to use their “special fingers” to eat with – thumb and middle fingers. We then eat too much chocolate cake and we have very sore tummies.

After we feel a bit better we go for a ride on the slide. The children sit with their legs straight in front of them and flex and stretch their feet alternately as they climb up the high slide. pre ballet class ideasOnce they are at the top, they show how scared they are by shaking their legs and showing a scared face. They then slide down and fall off the end where they curl into a ball. RAD teachers can use the pre primary music for exercise for legs and feet for this one.

We then hold hands and practice our gallops in a circle while we go on the merry-go-round. You can add in lots here, like making the circle smaller and bigger, pointing toes or heels into the middle of the circle, or even running around on the tips of their toes.

We then go on the See- Saw, where we hold hands with our partners and do demi plies alternatively. One partner goes up while the other goes down. Depending on the maturity of your class you can do this in parallel or in 1st or 2nd position.

We also go on the swings. The children can sway alone or with partners.

Next we go through the tunnel. Here the children can slither on their tummies, which is another great way to build up their core strength and coordination.

I usually only fit about two rides in per lesson, which is fine, because another lesson we can do something else at the park.

To end our day, we can do tired walks home, or once again catch a train, drive a car or skip.

I hope that teachers of dance will find these pre ballet class ideas helpful. For more of these stories, click here.

Please feel free to leave your comments and pre ballet class ideas below.

 

 

 

 

Pre Ballet Lesson Plans – Snow Mountain Adventure

pre ballet lesson plans

I use pre ballet lesson plans for my baby classes, and this is of one of my favorites.  The children often ask to do this story.  It is designed more for older children of about 5 years, but it can be simplified for 3 and 4-year-olds.  Children love stories, and this is a great way for them to learn ballet steps, but while acting out a story.

Pre Ballet Lesson Plans

I have various pre ballet lesson plans that I use to teach my tiny tots. I have the music labeled with the story on my iPod for ease of use, and to remind me of the different stories. It helps to have your music organized in order so you don’t waste time jumping around, thus losing the focus of the children.

Snow Mountain Adventure 

pre ballet lesson plans

We start our adventure by getting dressed warmly to go up into the freezing mountains.  We even have a song that we sing while we are putting on our hat, scarf, and boots.

Next, we climb into our car, which we do by putting our legs in front of us bent , with a straight back.  We drive on a dirt road, so we bounce up and down, lean back (to work the tummy) as we go uphill, and forward as we come down.  We also lean to the side when we turn corners and try not to fall out of the car.

We look into the glove compartment and get our airplane tickets so that we can fly up the magic mountain.

We then climb into the airplane and fly to the top of the magic mountain.  I usually take the best behaved child so far  that day, and make her the pilot, and the others follow the leader.  They run on the tips of their toes with their arms out to the side. Tell them not to “bend their wings’ or the plane will crash.

We land the plane nicely by spinning on our toes and ending with our feet together.

When we get out of the plane at the top of the mountain, we have to walk in very deep snow up to our waists, so we have to lift our knees really high. This is a good way to practice for marches or skips.

We then come across a frozen lake.  We decide before we go ice skating, we will walk across on our bottoms to see if the ice is thick enough to hold our weight.  Let the children sit with their legs out straight in front of them and walk both forwards and backwards without touching the ice with their fingers.

This exercise is excellent for developing their stomach muscles and core, but the older children will manage this far easier than the younger ones.

As the lake is hard enough, we put on our ice skates and go skating on the lake.  This teaches the children the basics of a chasse in ballet.  Sometimes we even twirl on one leg.

We then get to a forest, and I lay down bean bags, which represent trees, and we follow the leader and skip through the trees.

We come across some ponies tied to a tree and go for a pony ride.  Here we use skipping ropes around the ponies waists and the children take turns in being ponies and riders.  Some days we do pony gallops, some pony trots and other days just pony walks, depending on the ability of the children in the class.

We then run and leap over the river.  I use two skipping ropes laid out on the floor like railway tracks for this one.

We hear somebody calling for help, and discover a cave with a big rock blocking the entrance.  We try to push the rock, but it is too heavy.  Then we see a piece of paper sticking out the side which says “This is a magic rock.  In order to make it move you need to do the following:  Stand and balance on one leg, hop on one leg, sit down and stand up without using your hands on the floor.”

After doing what the paper says the rock moves away and all the fairies that were trapped inside the cave come flying out.  They thank the children for saving them and give them a set of wings as a gift.

The children then fly home with their new set of fairy wings.

I will from time to time be adding more pre ballet lesson plans to this blog. Please let me know how it goes if you use it in the class.

 

 

 

Short Stories For Kids – Pre Ballet Class Ideas for your Baby Ballerinas

pre ballet lesson plans

One of the more difficult jobs of a dance teacher is thinking up new ideas and short stories for kids for a ballet class.  Sometimes the creative juices just don’t want to flow freely, and thinking up pre-ballet class ideas for your beginners can become a nightmare.

Here on this post, I would like to give you some ideas of short stories for kids, starting with this one.  I call this class ‘The Magic Island.’  For my littlies I like to present my classes in story format as it just makes it more interesting for them.

If parents want to have some fun and bonding time with their kids, they will enjoy acting this story out with you.

The Magic Island Short Stories For Kids Lesson Plan

This is a class I adapt according to ability, but most of it works for children from the ages of three to five years old.short stories for kids

I start the class with the children sitting with their legs bent in front of them with feet together and flat on the floor, like they are sitting in a canoe.  I tell them that they are going to row to the magic island.  We hold the oars in both hands and twist the body side to side.  When our arms get ‘tired of rowing’ I let them shake out their arms, then legs, then both together before carrying on with the rowing.  In this way, they are warming up their bodies in a gentle way before they start to dance.

Next for fun, we imagine the sharks are chasing us, so we see who can row the fastest while keeping their legs and feet glued together.  This really works the waist and inner thighs.

We row so fast that we crash into some rocks, so now we have to swim. They stand up in the boat, hold their noses and jump overboard.

While swimming on tippy toes, we can imitate various arm movements used during swimming, for instance, breast stroke, free style or doggy paddle.  We can even swim backwards with the older kids.

Once we get to the beach, the sand is really really hot, so we need to jump from foot to foot.  This is the basis for pony trots.

We then find ourselves a rock pool to dip our feet into. Here we can do either point and close, or point and lift foot sharply out of water and balance with the foot placed on the side of the knee.

From here we start our island adventure in various different ways, depending on the class you and age group that you are teaching.  Some ideas you could follow through on are as follows:

Blowing up our beach balls and bouncing them (jumps).
Swimming like star fish by lying on the floor on our backs and moving our arms and legs in and out sideways simultaneously like an angel, then kicking our legs fast in the air as we swim quickly away from the sharks.
Walking like crabs sideways with legs in a demi plie in seconde. The children love to make cheeky crab faces here.
Swimming with the fish or dolphins.
Walking like penguins with duck feet. We also eat fish and try to run like penguins. Small steps here with turned out feet as penguin have very short legs.
Flying like seagulls, which is very similar to flying like fairies.
Picking up magic sea shells with special fingers (thumb and middle finger).
Mermaids. The children love this one. We can do anything on the floor, but we have to keep our legs and feet glued together.
Mermaids riding on sea horses. Here you can introduce pony gallops.

At the end of the adventure we normally catch a ride back home on Puff the Magic Dragon’s back. We swoop through the sky and blow fire out through our noses.

At the end of our lesson we normally have a stretch before falling asleep in our bed after an exhausting day at Magic Island.

I hope you enjoyed reading another lesson plan in my short stories for kids series.