Blown Away!

As a new addition to the DWC faculty, I recently had my first experience of teaching the core program to third and fourth graders for the ten week curriculum which culminates in the Dance-Off event that was held at the Chicago Cultural Center. I must admit, during the first few weeks of my teaching assignment, I was not feeling very confident that I would even be able to pick students to perform at this event. Many of the students refused to dance with partners, unable to bear the hand connection needed in ballroom dance between a young man and young lady, let alone learn the five different routines and styles that are taught. 

The overall behavior in class at first was challenging, but I was able to see little sparks of interest in many of the student’s eyes that kept me motivated. To my delight and surprise, around week five, a shift occurred in the students. They were engaged, excited about dance, and somewhat comfortable connecting to their partner in “closed dance position.”  Many of the boys who refused to dance at first, were completely on board and expressed interest in competing in the Dance-Off. 

I selected my group, we prepared for the event, and I crossed my fingers! When the student’s arrived at the Cultural Center, their excitement was noticeable and each of them were groomed and dressed to the nines. They wanted to review their dances immediately, and make sure they were ready. Then it began. Lights, camera, action! They had a blast! I, and the students, were blown away by this event! 

The students from all schools were on best behavior, showing respect to one another and other schools, and above all- felt proud to be there. This feeling of confidence, self-respect, and excitement permeated the ballroom. I was in awe of the power of dance and its ability to bring together so many diverse communities in Chicago in celebration of the accomplishments of the students in this core program! I was elated and moved by my first experience of this program, as were many of my students and their parents, and look forward to the next Dance-Off!

1 comment:

  1. We are so lucky to have Miss Megan L. as part of the faculty!