Dance: Learning in dance can be integrated into a range of pedagogical approaches.

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  • Author :  admin
  • Date :  Jan 28, 2013
  • Views :  4725
  • Type :  1
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  • Credits: 

    Janice Deans, Chief Writer

    Louise Saxton, Photographer

    Wendy Hulsbergen, Video Technician

  • Tags :  Pedagogy


Opportunities & Extensions

Learning in dance can be integrated into a variety of pedagogical approaches, including A way of working with children that encompasses an in-depth inquiry over time.. Young children are interested in exploring the world using their bodies, and most learning content can be investigated through dance. Projects or inquiry-based learning involves children investigating ideas over time, with teachers building understandings through the use of open-ended questioning, hypothesising, multi-modal explorations and child-initiated investigations.

Projects have a clear beginning, a development phase and a conclusion, with brainstorming, webbing and layered learning being part of the process. This approach supports a deep level of engagement in meaningful learning and encourages positive dispositions such as curiosity, persistence and lateral thinking. Children are also given multiple ways to express their ideas through various media. Stimulating resources can also be included to expand and extend the learning. At the end of the investigation, the collected documentation can be used to encourage children and teachers to reflect on what has been learned and the processes that have led to this learning. At all stages of the journey, families can be involved to further support and extend the children’s knowledge, skills and dispositions.

The following practical considerations may be useful. Teachers are recommended to:

  1. try to establish a lesson structure that the children become quickly familiar with
  2. organise class rules with the children in the first lesson (e.g. the teacher can demonstrate how the sound of the tambour means 'stillness')
  3. collect specialised resources to have on hand (e.g. large pieces of material, scarves, lengths of rope and any other concrete materials that support the lesson content, such as photographs, paintings, shells or leaves)
  4. ensure that musical instruments such as a hum drum, glockenspiel, tambour, woodblocks and bells are available to be used to extend the movement experience
  5. carefully select their recorded music and make sure that it is set, ready to play and that its quality suitably matches the movement material or ideas that are being explored in the class 
  6. give children the opportunity to extend their learning through collaborative choreographic experience (e.g. creating a dance that incorporates a clear beginning, a middle and an end)
  7. encourage children to extend their gestures, to energise their leaps and jumps and to take a few calculated risks that allow them to fully experience their individual and personalised dance
  8. affirm and acknowledge every effort that is made by individuals, as this gives children the confidence and desire to become more deeply involved and engaged.

This project is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.