Starter Kit

My Own Experience

August 18, 2020

Having my final semester at Skidmore College become remote was quite the challenge. As a dance major, I had to adapt quickly to the online platform of Zoom. I never really thought I would turn the sun room in my house into a dance studio, but this is now where I spend many hours of my week. Now that it is August, I have learned quite a few things on how to take a virtual dance class effectively and efficiently.

First off, make sure your space is suitable for you to move in. Aim to dance on a floor that is smooth, flat and sprung to absorb impact. Also, make sure you have good lighting and the temperature is set to a comfortable setting.

While taking an online dance class, it is your responsibility as a student to communicate to your teacher what you can and cannot do in your space.

Be safe in your space. I cannot stress this enough! Even if the teacher asks you to jump or turn and you don’t feel comfortable or don’t have the space, don’t do it! Make sure you warm-up and cool down your body in ways that are effective for you. Adjustments are expected when taking virtual dance classes.

Tips to Have a Productive Dance Class at Home

September 4, 2020

  • Take note of your lighting: If you are indoors make sure you have a sufficient amount of light. If dancing outdoors the lighting is quite unpredictable due to weather. Before taking your dance class, consider what the class consists of and what space will be most suitable/accessible to make you get the most out of your experience!
  • Test out different angles on whatever device you will be using to watch class: It is very important to make sure you can see yourself dancing during class. Particularly over Zoom, I have found that when I can see my whole body on my computer I immediately feel more connected with my fellow dancers taking class online with me!
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions to your instructor: Although you are taking class virtually that does not mean your teacher cares any less about your success. As I am currently working towards my MA in Dance Education I know that as a teacher I aspire to help my students in any way possible. I want to stop my class to clarify whatever we are doing to make my students feel as comfortable as possible even though we are not in the studio together.
  • Keep a journal nearby: Having something to take notes or just jot down anything from class that sticks with you will be very helpful and be nice to look back on. I love doing this cause each teacher sprinkles little nuggets of their own inspiration throughout class. I always want to remember these sayings. It only takes a minute to write something down plus it is nice to have a tangible memory of a dance class you took.

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