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Starting a Brand New Children’s Dance Class

Starting a Brand New Children's Dance Class

Here is some great advice from Miss Vicci, our creative director about starting a brand new dance class for children.

When it comes to your Lil ones taking part in a new class ..be it dance, football, swimming, etc we want the best for our kids and most importantly we want them to enjoy what they do!

What was the right path for me?

I was one of those kids who tried it all from dance, horse riding, Jujitsu, girls brigade, piano, even chess club haha! I know I had both my parents running me around here there and everywhere trying new classes. I actually don’t remember how I decided to stop going to them… I can only assume I no longer had an interest. However, dance was the only one that stuck with me alongside horse riding which is will always be close to my heart!

 

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Education Through Movement

Children really do respond better to routine

If you can find a class which offers trial’s this is great as it gives your child a chance to get used to the routine and structure of the classes, meeting their new teacher & new friends.

Being Shy

Your child might be bouncing around like a rockstar at home jamming to songs without a care in the world. Then when it comes to attending their first class they can become super shy and get upset. For a lot of teachers (especially when working with toddlers), this is completely normal and also very understandable! It’s such a big deal to try something new and it can be overwhelming to some Lil ones. I’ve seen this so many times throughout my many years of teaching. However, it’s something I always explain to the adults who bring them.

Bear with them

We all have our own Lil ways of adjusting to new things. Some of us dive in straight away, some sit back and observe whilst others may get a little bit upset and scared. Your Teacher will have their own magical Lil way to help them feel welcome and take things at your Lil one’s pace.

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Teaching Culture Through Dance

Teaching Culture Through Dance

Teaching Culture Through Dance

Dance is a universal language that we can all speak and it is influenced by various cultures. Taking a class can break the barrier that stands between your perceptions of a culture and the culture itself.

Much of a culture’s history and its traditions are displayed through the art of dance. The way people move and the beat of the music is meant to tell the world a story.

At Lil Beatz, we aim to educate children in our classes. This month’s blog focuses on teaching culture through dance. To book a class for your little one, find a class.

The Art of Dance

During these unprecedented times, the world we live in seems strange. We all feel a little disconnected from one another. Dance classes have been conducted from living rooms, masks have covered our faces and physical contact has temporarily ceased.

For now, the idea of travelling and immersing ourselves in a different culture seems highly unreasonable and unlikely. However, we have a unique ability. We can transport ourselves to a different time and place through dance.

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Education Through Movement

In our classes, we explore more than just the style of dance unique to a country. We learn about the language, environment, values and benefits of the culture. Through the universal art form of dancing, we uncover the dynamics and complexity of a culture.

We take away the judgements we make based on what we perceive. 

How Do Our Classes Help?

Dance is a way for children to get to know themselves and feel a connection with the rest of the world. At Lil Beatz, it is that tapestry of diversity we choose to value. We guide our students to seek and explore similarities and differences among themselves.

Research has shown that teaching children about other cultures leads to greater self-esteem. Dancing benefits a child in many areas of development, including physically and cognitively. 

Movement is one of the first means of expression. From infancy, each new movement provides children with more information about their bodies’ capabilities. Dance also provides a unique opportunity to delve into another culture. This increases their personal knowledge whilst helping to boost their confidence.

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New Year, New Start

Our Lil Journey 2020

It started off with a BANG!! Lil Beatz first debut went down a storm … we created the buzz we wanted, filled everyone with excitement and I really couldn’t of been prouder of what we had achieved so far!

Then it hit … something no one was ready for… it felt like something out of a film and we were all the stars of our own movie. My first panic was that of the virus as I guess everyone’s was. I remember me and my partner taking the kids to park and sensing a strange atmosphere .. from the people around us to the feeling in the air! The day just felt like our last little bit of freedom … and it was the next day we were in lockdown!

Going Live

Knowing that we were going to be taking our classes online was both exciting and daunting! We moved the kitchen around and created the perfect Lil studio for me to host my classes. My partner Adam set up the tripod and phone ..and that was it we were ready to rock! I remember when the red light came on showing we were live .. my whole body tensed up! Its funny looking back and watching my first video . I was soooo not Miss Vicci , I was trying too hard to be professional and keep calm ( It didn’t help my mum calling wishing me luck but also adding don’t speak too fast Vic ) which I do naturally .. that and jump topics quite quickly! Anyway the first live video went well .. I had great feedback and we started to reach people who had never been to a Lil Beatz class before all around the UK. We were making a Lil difference and putting smiles on peoples faces and keeping them active.

As time went on the real Miss Vicci came out onto the screen …the fun, crazy and clumsy ! I had settled into my temporary role of teaching online. I started by hosting classes 2 times a day .. 6 days a week as well as my normal classes which I did online too. I wanted to give as much as I could. The energy you have to give online is something so different to what you deliver in an actual class. It was so draining mentally & physically. As a dance teacher we get our energy from seeing the kids .. but to be taking a class and just seeing yourself talking back was just not the same. I made the decision to not do as many classes live as I found it was too much for me. I didn’t realise that the lockdown was starting to effect me so I chose to listen to my heart and do what’s right for me at the time.

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The great outdoors

One thing I take out of this pandemic is a new love for the great outdoors. We were all blessed with great weather .. everything just seemed much more beautiful. I loved going for walks ( which if anyone knows me .. that’s not like me! ) we got our bikes out and old school skates (70s disco blaring) it was great. . It was also nice to spend more time with our families and having that time to slow down on the rat race of life that we can all get caught up in. It was back to basics and at first it felt good!

We had lockdown birthdays, Games days , picnics, themed meals , cinema nights it was endless how creative we went to make our lockdown as fun as we could. Don’t get me wrong though there was plenty of nights when you have no idea what to do or you just want to catch up on the latest boxset and just do absolutely nothing. I learnt to not feel guilty for doing nothing .. this lockdown was letting us have that time to react the way our bodies wanted too. I stopped watching the news as much as I felt that it was not something good to fixate on every morning. Instead I had morning chats with one of my best mates . We even did exercise together online . We helped each other through the ups and downs and I am forever grateful to have friends like that surrounding me.

 

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The future is bright

As soon as Lock down was lifted it was such an amazing feeling to be back into class! The first class I did I remember just putting on music and me and the kids just danced our socks off .. we were all just so excited to be back together! Classes were booming … we had waiting lists new franchises opening, new projects to focus on … the Lil Beatz ball was once again rolling!

Then Boom! Lockdown 2 ! Now I don’t know about you but this lockdown has been the worse.. I felt it a Lil harder to keep optimistic. I did however change the way our online classes worked and I understood the pressure parents were now going through once again. The plan was to just get through it.. get our team through it, to stay positive and most importantly not to put too much pressure on ourselves.

I went back to doing my classes online like so many other teachers … but the vibe for some reason was better.. because the kids had been there before they knew what to expect and I loved to click onto my zoom class and see all our Lil ones in uniform ready to dance. They really did give me energy this time and it was a buzz to see them learning and practicing their moves. I was blown away when we did our dancing in PJs with our families online. I saw grandparents , siblings the whole family taking part! We had over 50 families joining in and it was such a wonderful thing to experience and I will never forget!

So Christmas is over

And we start the new chapter of a new year! I don’t know how many times I have said “What a year?” But we have done it… we have been tested and we have come out the other side and in my eyes stronger! I know a hell of a lot of damage has been done ..I for one have felt it and so has our other franchises & teachers ..all we can do is ride this wave and not put too much pressure on ourselves. We have to count our blessings and going through this crazy time its made me appreciate all the Lil things. So stay strong people..and hang in there!… Keep dancing and keep smiling! I will see you all in the new year and whatever 2021 has for us .. we will all face it head on together.

Love Miss Vicci x x x

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To Teach Or Not To Teach?

An Aries with no fire

Turning 30 was hard, not because of the ageing process! But because I was at a crossroad! I was running my own dance school with my best mate, teaching dance for the council, teaching for other dance schools and then I had been offered a job at a nursery! I was running around everywhere! Money was pretty much going down the drain pipe and I was feeling probably at the lowest point!

When the job got offered to me to be a nursery nurse, have all my training paid for me and to then go on to have a secure job you’d think I’d be jumping for joy! ( one thing us dance teachers don’t have is security ) and this was probably the perfect opportunity for me to get what some people call “a real job”

I lost myself completely … what do I do ? Do I take on this job or continue trying to run a business that I feel is draining me? Do I even what to teach ? The questions and the self doubt was endless!

From someone who is normally full of energy, gives energy to others .. an Aries who leads and inspires, runs into life head first without even thinking of the consequences! My fire had completely and utterly gone! It was horrible and a point in my life I would never forget!

Physic Reading

The world seemed like a grey colour wherever I went! However thankfully the optimist inside me finally awoke again …I then decided to book into see a physic. As soon as I walked through the door, her first words was “ Hi ! Wow your draining me already! Where’s your fire?!” I was gobsmacked! I burst into tears! ( It takes a lot for me to cry ) But I knew she was right .. I was everything that I didn’t want to be! After I wiped away my mascara I then went onto have what I can say was an amazing conversation .. we didn’t even start the cards reading straight away .. we just spoke ( I know what your probably thinking … don’t give too much away etc) But I really wasn’t bothered I just wanted .. some kind of release!

Now I probably didn’t need a physic to tell me this but what she did say hit me like a tonne of bricks “The only way to do great work, is to Love what you do!”

Did I love Teaching ? YES I did! Did I really want to go and do 2 years training to become a nursery nurse to work 8am -6pm, Monday to Friday! ( no disrespect to the nursery nurses at all ) It just wasn’t for me … I had lost myself and now I felt like I knew what I wanted to do … it was clear as day and the self doubt had gone … for now!

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Born to teach dance

So why write about this you say ? Because I’ve been there and I hit the crossroads that could have taken on a complete and different path! When I teach I feel like I’m doing what I was put on this earth to do .. I Love seeing my students develop and grow in confidence!

At a time now when the younger generation need it more than ever! ( I’m gonna sound old now! ) But times are changing, as much as technology is changing so fast, socially we can become more distant. It’s actually scary ! I’ve seen it myself .. children are getting anxious, suffering with depression and obesity levels are rising. The world for children is changing and that is why more than ever .. being a teacher is the super power to lead them in right direction!

A quote from my favourite film Sister act “If you wake up in the morning and you can’t think of anything but singing first, then you’re supposed to be a singer girl.” Same with dancing ! If you can’t help but move when that beat kicks in on the radio.. or your mind can’t stop creating to that piece of music you heard… you were born to dance! So when you hit them crossroads in your life and you feel that fire in your belly grow.. follow the fire!!

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Benefits of Owning a Franchise vs. Independent Dance School

Street Dancer

While dance schools represent a gleaming and sometimes revolutionary hope in the eyes of those who go there, it is so much more than that. When dancers run a dance school, they breathe their unique, talented, and magical soul into the place.

This gives the school an edge over competitors. You will obviously run a dance school business for profit.

So, how can you make your dance school business more profitable? 

In this article, we explain how you can maintain your love for dancing and run a profitable business that you can imagine through franchising.

Benefits of Owning a Franchising

Unmatched Uniqueness and Name Recognition

A franchise like Lil Beatz is not only well-known; they are an award-winning street dance franchise. They are a family of talented professionals with a proven program that will not let you fail. When you add individual attributes and zeal that you bring to the table through years of hard work and experience of the Lil Beatz team, you get a uniqueness, unlike any other. A combination like this appeals to all customers, helping them develop superior social skills.

Full Training, Support & Superior Dance Instructions

Not only can you expect to earn a good income, but you will also save a lot since Lil Beatz provides intense training on all platforms, and provides a syllabus, classes, and other on-going support. The training methods will result in higher and faster levels of achievement regardless of any student’s comprehension or physical attributes.

Unique Music and Syllabus

The syllabus, as well as the music provided, will be specially designed and curated, and will be available to you via amazing apps and online platforms. 

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Innovative Software

Very few franchises offer access to innovative software apps and platforms that are custom-built to bring a revolution to your business. The Lil Beatz Software not only makes running your franchise easy, but it also takes on the hassle of managing the business for you.

Marketing Support and Expertise

Another remarkable benefit of owning a franchise is; taking advantage of an already defined marketing program. Lil Beatz’s team of experts provides on-going marketing support with social media marketing, SEO, and digital marketing. They set up and manage all your social media for you. They also set-up your own page on their website and link it to your app.

Amazing Merchandise

Specially designed merchandise and clothing add value to dance products because of their exclusivity. Plus, parents love them.

Bottom line:

Dance school franchises like Lil Beatz offer good earning potential. With hard work, you can get your initial investment back within 12 months and start making a good profit. The support that these guys offer is remarkable, which is expected with dedicated, experienced, and qualified directors running the show. So when it comes down to it, you can run a much more profitable and smooth business with a franchise, especially because of the immense business growth opportunities. 

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Diversity through Dance

Diversity through Dance

Dancing speaks the language of love, passion, and inclusion. With so many varieties in music and instruments, there are equally varying types, classes, and categories of dances. There is no rule anywhere in the entire world that restricts you to a specific type of dance form or to a specific group of people only.

But how does dance manage to do all that, and why is diversity even important?

Importance of Diversity

Why do we even need diversity? This is a question that comes up in almost everyone’s career. Therefore, a quick fresher doesn’t hurt anyone.

Diversity is an essential element in society that provides an improvement, enhancement, and betterment in all walks of life. It provides productivity, new perspective, fresh ideas, growing acceptance, and a more prosperous life experience.

In dance, diversity provides the following:

A Means of Fascination and Interest

Ironically, the things that cause classes and categories in life businesses the most, they are the very things that strengthen diversity in dance. It is cultural and ethical fascination that leads people to experiment with the almost hypnotic and mesmerising movements. These become a novelty for dancers.

A Means of Understanding and Empathy

Dance is a form of expression of one’s feelings, thoughts, and emotions. These things are not only abstract, t they are also universally accepted. This is why, no matter how hard a person tries, dance remains free from racial discrimination or monoculturalism.

When a dance troupe shares a goal of winning a championship, and when a team wants nothing more than to perform or when a couple sets their mind on learning a new dance, they put their differences aside and work together as a team. This is how dance presents a goal and perhaps an excuse for partners to know and accept each other, compared to what they initially perceived.

It is through dance that people understand each other’s pain, struggle, hardships, and deep emotions, just like their own. It is here that they see human breath, sweat, moves, and expressions just like their own.

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A Means of Awareness and Education

Not only does a dance stage encourage people to try out different types of dance, it also urges people of different cultural backgrounds to come together and perform. It is through these dances and performances that they represent unity, harmony, and an accurate representation of diversity.

To those who don’t believe in the concept of diversity, this is a much-needed wakeup call. In other words, diverse dancing not only helps performers and dancers, but it also helps educate the global audience.

To conclude, dance is diverse in steps, people, style, rhythm, instruments, music, and much more, both traditionally and culturally. It is a great way to bring much-needed appreciation and respect for different cultures. This is why people should participate in dancing more frequently and, if possible, from a young age.

Parents, teachers, and guardians should be the ones to have their kids dance from an early age. When instilled at an early age, sound habits can become a permanent positive change in life.

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Nothing Like The Bhangra Dance

Bhangra Dance

Bhangra is a uniquely happy, festive, and culturally rich form of dance. What many people don’t realise about Bhangra is that it does not only refer to pointing one finger to the sky and jumping your shoulders.

Instead, it is a collection of several forms of folk dance and music that originated from Punjab, which is a region of India and Pakistan. However, this dance quickly gained widespread popularity.

The reason for this dance spreading like fire in the west, was its widely colorful and different music, dance steps and even dresses. All of this was vastly different from what western civilisation was used to, and this is why many people immediately fell in love with this dance. Some even take things a step further by inventing their own version of this festive dance.

Where It All Began

It all started with the Punjabi farmers. In the 14th or 15th century, Punjabi farmers use to celebrate the harvest season during the festival of Vaisakhi. The dance they did was vivacious and energetic, with many open arm jumps, open body language, and cheerful smiles. This dance was dubbed Bhangra.

Bhangra quickly evolved into a dance form for all joyous occasions, especially weddings and other celebrations. The dhol is a drum-like instrument, which is vital for the Bhangra dance. When the sticks hit the film of the dhol, it produces an intoxicating sound that reflects the beats of our very own hearts. Merely listening to the dhol playing, makes a person jump up and break out their Bhangra moves.

Bhangra Is Inspirational

Arguably, there is no dance quite like the Bhangra because of its rich cultural meaning. The reason why the Bhangra dresses are so vibrant is that they reflect the joyous nature of the dance. Even the colours tell the story of their origin with yellow representing the mustard or Sarson fields, red representing saffron harvest, and the green represents prosperity. Since the Bhangra dance involves many energetic movements, the dresses need to be loose-fitting, to allow easy movement without restricting the body.

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Bhangra Is Inspirational

Arguably, there is no dance quite like the Bhangra because of its rich cultural meaning. The reason why the Bhangra dresses are so vibrant is that they reflect the joyous nature of the dance. Even the colours tell the story of their origin with yellow representing the mustard or Sarson fields, red representing saffron harvest, and the green represents prosperity. Since the Bhangra dance involves many energetic movements, the dresses need to be loose-fitting, to allow easy movement without restricting the body.

Bhangra is Influential

The inspirational dance is usually seen in Bollywood song videos and movies. However, its popularity reached international platforms when several contestants on America’s Got Talent performed various versions of Bhangra. We even see an audition where a Michael Jackson impression rocked to the beat of Bhangra. This video understandably went viral.

There are other global platforms as well, where the vibrant dance moves and colors of Bhangra worked their magic. The international influence of this festive dance brought forward new variations, which made it easy for everyone to enjoy.

The modern version of Bhangra includes a mix of western pop music. Other fusions include elements of raga, reggae, rock, hip hop, soul, and other dance music in the traditional dance form. British Bhangra took the dance a step further with the infusion of rock music, breaking the repetitive folk dance move stereotype.

Since the innovation in Bhangra started, and sometimes even before that, there have been many bands, teams, and representative parties that proudly flaunt the colorful dance moves and costumes. With such a rich background and an even brighter future, more people need to appreciate the art of Bhangra.

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Do Better Dance Skills Lead to Better Academic Performance?

Dance Skills Lead to Better Academic Performance

For children, the initial stages of learning, physical and mental health development, should run parallel. Academic performance can give your child a starting point and trigger their interests when they figure out that they are good at some subject areas. It’s pretty much the same when it comes them finding out that they have some skills in certain physical activities.

Once they recognise their skills and feel good about their physical skills, it can give them a launch pad to improve their academic performance. This is why some experts argue that dance skills and academic performances are directly related to each other. Success with skills like dancing can drive success in academics.

While parents look out for ways to boost their child’s academic performance, they are now recognising how dance skills are among the easiest ways for children to achieve better grades. Below, we also discuss a few benefits of dance skills with regard to academic performance:

Dance Skills Boost Brain Function

The brain has a complex network of synapses in the brain, and these are linked to neurons and nerves through your body. So, there is a system that is completely connected. Through dance, you can help build synapses in your brain’s network. Developing dance skills can help your child think at an advanced level, building up new neuro pathways that enhance, reinforce and build new skills.

Each time a child learns and practices a new move, new pathways are built, and these can facilitate learning in general. Moreover, the brain learns how to learn; it gets used to the idea of building new pathways, so that when you learn something on the academic side of things, the network grows too.

In simpler words, some may call it transferable confidence wherein your brain learns something new, and that learning becomes a habit for learning new skills that may be quite diverse. So, if you let your child’s brain work regularly in this manner, they may become more intelligent.

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Dance Skills Lead to Better Memory

Better dance skills require unique techniques, and every dance step can help you progress through your training. Your child is not only required to memorise every step, but they also need to perfect each one. Timing and precision in execution are also important.

These precise movements include a number of actions in your body. Such details can enhance your memory and go a long way in boosting your multi-tasking and memorisation skills. Furthermore, this type of memory training starts at a young age. The earlier your child develops the habit or working on things like detail, precision, complexity and execution, the better for him or her.

Improves Focus

The ability to focus is learned, although for some it is easier, but difficult for others. Obviously, any course or activity requires your child to be attentive, and even dancing requires your child to focus on new moves or complex moves that need practice.

The effort required to develop new dance skills and execute them to perfection kindles a new habit in children, and this struggle to learn and master a skill can be applied to other domains including academic struggle and eventual success.

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How Kids Can Learn to Stretch before Every Dance Class

Child Stretching

Stretching goes hand in hand with the art of dancing. All dancers need to stretch before their class as it helps their body loosen up. Of the many benefits that stretching has to offer, flexibility is perhaps the most prominent one.

Stretching can also repair muscles and help children develop strong techniques. Since the bones and muscles of children are growing and developing constantly, stretching can help strengthen them. In other words, stretching is something that you should encourage your kids to do before each dance class.

6 Stretching Exercise You Should Do Before Every Dance Class

In this article, we present to you the top six ways or methods your child can learn to stretch before every dance class.

1. Side Stretch

You start by lifting your arms above your head and bending to one side slowly. Spend 10 to 15 seconds there and come back to the original pose. Now repeat the process with the other side. Do this for 5 rounds on both sides alternately. This exercise is good for stretching the muscles between your ribs.

2. Hamstring Stretch

You start this exercise by sitting on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Extend your arms forward towards your feet as far as you can. Your waist will be bending, too, as you reach forward. Hold this position for 15 to 30 seconds.  You relax into the original starting pose.

3. Neck Stretch

You can carry out the neck stretch into one of the three ways

  • By touching the chin to each shoulder
  • By touching the ear to both shoulders
  • move the head backward and forwards

Each stretch needs to be slow. Whichever method you decide to go for, hold it for 5 seconds on each side.

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4. Arm Stretch

Use one arm to hold the back of the other arm just above the elbow and gently pull the arm that you are holding across your body until you feel a good stretch. Hold the pose for about 10 seconds on both sides.

5. Calf Stretch

Stand facing a wall approx. Two feet away, and place both your hands at shoulder height on the wall. Keep one knee straight and step towards the wall. You will feel a stretch in the calf of your straight leg. Do this with both legs and hold the position for a minimum of 5 seconds on both sides.

6. Upper body Stretch

The upper body or the triceps stretch is an easy exercise. Raise one hand above your hand with the palm touching in the back of your head. Further, increase the bend of the elbow so that the tips of your fingers touch the middle of your upper back. Hold the stretch for 5 to 10 seconds, switch arms, and repeat.

Aside from these, we also have other forms of simple stretches that strengthen all the right muscles in the growing body of a child. These include quadriceps, leg or lower back, shoulder, arms, and ankles stretches of warm-ups. In other words, there is no shortage of stretching exercises out there.

Stretching before their dance class can help install a permanent healthy lifestyle in your kids from the beginning. Now, isn’t that something every parent wants?

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Where’s Mummy! How to Reduce Separation Anxiety During Your Child’s Dance Class

While some children participate in their dance class with a smile on their faces, others might face some problems. Having separation anxiety during classes is entirely normal, and no reason to panic. Please remember that you neither alone nor the first parent to have a child got through separation anxiety, but it is something that you can overcome.

In this article, we present to you the top 4tips that can help you and your kid along the process of transition and make the duration of the class a bit easier.

4 Tips to Overcome Separation Anxiety during Class


1. Hear Them Out

Getting your child talking and actually hearing them out almost always end constructively. Regardless of the duration of the dance class, it is better to hear what your kids have to say. You need to calmly address all their concerns and let them know if their fears are validated or not. If you notice your child is winding up, it is better to have them calmed down first and then explain that it’s just for a short while. Once the kids actually start to participate in the exercises, stretching, or other activities of the class, it will become much easier for them to relax and enjoy themselves.

2. Meet Up With Their Dance Teacher

We say this once again; you are not alone in this. When dealing with the challenges of separation anxiety, do not forget your greatest asset, the class teacher. The teachers have usually dealt with kids like these a lot and know how to handle them. Most teachers are also trained in various techniques to entertain or capture the attention of the child in such a way that it gets the students involved and participating. Getting a teacher to help you out smoothens the transition further. 

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3. Get to the Class Early

Getting to the dance class early helps your kid develop familiarity with their surrounding in your presence. It clams them down. When it comes to leaving, once again talking to them, hearing and addressing their fears helps them out greatly. If your child has a habit of clinging to you and you arrive on time or late, you will be leaving a crying and anxious child behind in a setting he is not familiar with or comfortable with.

4. Socialise your Children 

Besides teachers, other students can also help your kid adjust better in class. Most children are shy and uncomfortable in talking to new people, but these fears lessen when they are of almost the same age. You can try introducing them to other students and have them work together. If your child can form a friendship in class, they will most likely be very eager to attend each class, and the goodbye process will become a lot easier.

To sum it up, separation anxiety is a real thing, but with proper patience and techniques, you can easily overcome this. All parents want their children to have an enjoyable and tension-free time in their class.

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