Most of the kids I’ve worked with love to dance. Put on some music and they need no invitation to get up and boogie. Even the babies start wiggling around and groove to the beat.
Each child has his or her own style and special moves. By helping kids put their steps together, you can create your own special dance as a team!
Creating As a Team
I like this activity because everyone gets a chance to be a leader, share their ideas and be creative. It is also a way to practice taking turns and working as a group. It works with one grownup and one child or a group of kids.
Toddlers may not be ready for this level of organization, but I have had success doing this activity with a mixed age group of toddlers and preschoolers. If there is an infant around bring him along and incorporate a wiggle or hand gesture he makes into the dance.
Step by Step
- Choose a favorite song and explain briefly that you’d like to choreograph a dance together. Encourage but don’t force participation.
- Put on the song and ask “What shall we do first?” If the kids need help getting started you can offer the first step.
- Everyone does the first step for a phrase or two. Ask “What shall we do next?”
- Do the next step, then “Take it from the top!”
- Keep adding steps and then taking it from the top until the song is over (strike a pose at the end.) Make sure everyone who would like to contribute a step is able to do so. If someone doesn’t want to contribute, that’s OK. Offer them a chance the next time around.
- Exercise your memories by doing the dance again the next day.
Exercise Your Memory With Music and Movement
Once the kids get into the swing of things, I like to hand over the lead. Instead of just following the sequence, I pause and ask “What comes next?” to give the kids a chance to remember the steps on their own.
Try this activity with songs of different tempos and genres. Talk about the feeling of the music and notice how the steps change with each dance. Add props or costumes to keep things interesting. Above all, have fun moving together!