How to Create a Successful Dance Lesson for Students With Anxiety and Depression

Feb 16, 2024 Uncategorized

dance lesson

Dance is an excellent way to encourage the body to produce feel good hormones, which is particularly useful for students who experience anxiety or depression. Not only does dancing make students happy, but it also helps them forget their worries and gives them a positive activity to look forward to each week.

Students benefit from having an effective class sequence – including a way to transition into dance (an opening ritual), an opportunity to warm up, and a chance to explore the day’s dance concepts and skills in new ways. While many dance forms have codified class sequences – ballet, for example has barre, center practice, and allegro – teachers can adapt these to meet student learning needs.

Using a science theme like the Great Pacific garbage patch can provide the motivation to develop a dance that illustrates the concept of movement as a form of environmental protection. This dance can be paired with research and discussion in the classroom to help bridge dance and science learning.

Discussing beliefs and attitudes regarding what determines a successful dancer can help dancers embrace their unique qualities and potential. For example, a highly flexible student who lacks core strength can understand that investing time in building those abilities will accelerate their progress.

It is important to balance comments about anatomical physique and dynamic movement qualities with discussion of artistic attributes. Often dancers who are focused on meeting strict technical standards can feel discouraged when they encounter obstacles that interfere with their development. Opening up the class point of view to include artistic processes reduces the compulsion for dancers to compare themselves with one another and increases their confidence to approach new material.