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The Priorities in Practice

Here are some practical ways you can implement the Priorities into your practice as a dance education professional:

Connect Connect the Field

  • Bring in guest artists to work with your students. Hosting guest classes, workshops, or choreographic residencies helps you to form professional connections and exposes your students to new ways of moving, creating, and thinking about dance.
  • Make connections with local dance companies, college performing ensembles, or touring groups. Possibilities could include workshops or lec-dems, internships or apprenticeships for your students, guest performing opportunities, or mentorship programs.
  • Collaborate with other dance education institutions in your area in a learning or performance experience. Bring together K-12 programs in public, private, and charter schools, dance studios and conservatories, and college programs to create a synergistic event benefiting all.
  • Make connections with your local community. Consider performances at town events, intergenerational projects, service-based learning, and ways to advocate for dance and dance education.
  • Connect your students to national organizations. For example, National Honor Society for Dance Arts and collegiate student memberships offer ways for students to get involved with NDEO.
  • Expose your students to new dance genres through video, live performance, or guest artists. Model openness to new ways of moving, creating, and thinking about dance by reaching out to educators whose work originates from cultures and abilities other than your own to share common ground.
  • Demonstrate respect for dance education professionals across all genres and practice areas.

Build Build Knowledge

  • Encourage your students to explore new ways of thinking of the field of dance including dance history and theory, writing and criticism, science and medicine, administration, advocacy, and movement therapy.
  • Bring awareness of the choreographic process as a research practice, encouraging your students, fellow teachers, administrators, and dance parents to recognize how learning occurs through the creation, refinement, and performance of dance movement.
  • Pursue lifelong learning in dance, and share what you learn with your students, colleagues, and community.
  • Share your knowledge with your fellow NDEO members. Consider submitting work for publication in JODE or DEIP, on the DELRdi, or as a guest blogger. Apply to be a presenter at the National Conference. Encourage discussion and problem solving via the online forums.
  • Share and promote your students’ learning with the community, via performances, social media, publications, or lecture-demonstrations at local events.
  • Contribute to the quantitative body of dance research, by conducting your own study if within your skillset, encouraging your undergraduate or graduate students to engage in such research, or participating in studies hosted by universities or organizations.

Cultivate Cultivate Leadership

  • Provide opportunities for leadership to your students, through student-directed concerts, service projects, or community-based programs.
  • Recognize student leadership by hosting a chapter of NHSDA at your dance program.
  • Seek opportunities for your students to be mentored by local or national leaders in dance and dance education.
  • Take on leadership roles in your school, community, or state organizations.
  • Serve as a leader in NDEO by running for a position in the Board of Directors, or foster your leadership potential by applying to be an adjudicator for the NHSDA Award process, a K-12 teacher mentor in our Mentorship Program, or a member of a Board Committee.
  • Recognize leadership and excellence in the field by nominating a fellow dance educator for one of our National Awards.
  • Speak up for the value of dance and dance education by participating in local, state, or national advocacy.