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Dance Education Blog

NDEO's "Dance Education" Blog features articles written by NDEO members about dance and dance education topics as well as periodic updates on NDEO programs and services. This is a FREE resource available to ALL.

by Anne Dunkin, DELRdi Coordinator 2004-2024 ~~ For two decades NDEO has provided members with open access to its Dance Education Research and Literature Descriptive Index (DELRdi). However, usage statistics indicate that very few members take advantage of this unique and significant dance education information resource. WHY? To dismiss any misconceptions, and to reinforce DELRdi's usefulness, this blog describes eight scenarios that bridge all dance education constituencies and might easily...
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Over the summer, many teachers find themselves reflecting on the past year: what worked, what could have gone better, and how to improve the learning experience for your students next time. If you are looking for a way to enrich your classes and deepen your students’ dance learning, consider incorporating somatic movement into your dance classes. Somatic movement is a term for a range of movement practices that “enhance human functioning and body-mind integration through movement awareness,” ...
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by Yoav Kaddar, NDEO President ~~ The past few years have been tumultuous for dance in higher education. After an impressive shift to new models of teaching and learning dance during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, many schools now face struggles with decreased enrollment, budget cuts, and shifting institutional priorities impacting dance programs nationwide. These trends within higher education and elsewhere within our field have been happening for a while, notably with Mills College (2021...
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By Helen Buck-Pavlick, Doctoral Student, The Ohio State University ~~ This blog will outline how, as K-12 dance educators, you may be able to tap into your school’s ESSA funding to support your conference attendance by answering three questions: What is the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)? How can I use ESSA to support conference attendance? How do I talk to my administrator about leveraging ESSA to support conference attendance?...
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by Tamara Irving, Higher Ed Educator; Consultant, TMI Design & Consulting ~~ As a passionate performer without a formal dance education degree, my journey into teaching was unorthodox. Still, I was eager to share my love for dance with students and inspire their passion for this art form. However, without a structured framework, it was challenging to offer comprehensive dance education. That's when I discovered the International Baccalaureate (IB) Dance Program, a game-changer for both my st...
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By Shelby Bensinger, NDEO Program Coordinator ~~ Welcome to Part 3 of NDEO’s blog series highlighting Performing Arts Organizations who are institutional members of NDEO, and celebrating their contributions to the field of dance education. In dance performing arts organizations, creativity and passion come together to uplift communities and celebrate cultural diversity. These institutions serve as beacons of artistic expression, providing accessible avenues for individuals of all backgrounds t...
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By Shannon Dooling-Cain, NDEO Special Projects ~~ As a dance educator, you might be familiar with the term somatic movement. You may have seen social media posts extolling the benefits of trendy somatic workouts, you may even have some experience with somatic movement practices, like Alexander Technique. However, you may be curious about what the term “somatic movement” actually means, or how to incorporate somatic movement practices into your dance lesson plans or personal practice...
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by Gina D'Antonio-Spears, Dance Educator, Portage Park Elementary, Chicago Public Schools ~~ When I first began teaching in Chicago Public Schools, dance positions were few and far between. One day, I was at a conference and I met this amazing elementary dance teacher. I latched onto her like a lost puppy, asked if we could have lunch together, and *boom* I had a mentor. Suddenly I was not alone in my work, no longer teaching dance in a bubble. Over the years she advised me and inspired me, ...
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by Betsy Maloney Leaf, PhD, MFA, Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota ~~ The following blog was written by NDEO member Betsy Maloney-Leaf. She is proposing a new Special Interest Group for Teacher Trainers in Dance Education, the educators who prepare the next generation of dance teachers. We at NDEO recognize and support the need to bring this group of dance educators together to cultivate support and leadership within our community. This blog sets forth why our community needs this spe...
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By Shelby Bensinger, NDEO Program Coordinator ~~ In dance performing arts organizations, creativity and passion come together to uplift communities and celebrate cultural diversity. These institutions serve as beacons of artistic expression, providing accessible avenues for individuals of all backgrounds to engage with the transformative power of dance. From local dance companies dedicated to preserving traditional folk dances to urban youth ensembles empowering underserved communities, each org...
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By Shannon Dooling-Cain, NDEO Special Projects ~~ When you think about honor societies, the first thing that might come to mind is student recognition: honor cords and induction ceremonies, mentions on resumés and framed certificates. Student recognition is indeed an important part of the mission of the National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA), a program of the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO). Our mission goes beyond celebrating outstanding artistic merit, leadership, and acade...
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To kick off our Performing Arts Organization Blog Series, this post focuses on one of our institutional NDEO members, The Misty Copeland Foundation. The Misty Copeland Foundation was established in 2021. In an engaging conversation on The Heart of Giving Podcast, Misty Copeland and Executive Director, Caryn Campbell, discuss The Misty Copeland Foundation’s journey and contributions to the dance field. This blog post delves into the background of The Misty Copeland Foundation and their initiativ...
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By Krista Brown, Freelance Teaching Artist ~~ Many veteran teachers know the voice that springs up when there is a lull in learning choreography. As I am scrolling through notes, if ever there is a quiet moment I often hear “we could…” or “what about this…” In my early years of teaching, I’d shoo it away and say, “that’s a nice idea” and proceed with my choreography notes. Whether this is how I feel the classroom is best managed, I think rests on something beyond just expectation setti...
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by Krista Brown, Freelance Teaching Artist ~~ Traditional classrooms have this ability with their constructed spaces dedicated to learning and transition between multiple subjects during the entire day. Dance teachers don’t possess this in most cases. As a freelance teacher, I shift from space to space with totally different students. There is a solution that has brought me this relationship I crave as well as a focused attention from my students: my fuzzy little friend, talking tomato. This...
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By Ella Rosewood, Crelata® Founder & CEO ~~ Most K-12 students don’t have access to dance education. If students are lucky enough to have a dance teacher at their school, the classes that are available are often restricted to the teacher’s personal knowledge. This means that the small subsection of students in public schools with access to dance education may only get lessons in a few dance styles...
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