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20 reasons dance is good for Pre-schoolers

20 reasons dance is good for Pre-schoolers

20 reasons your child should dance – that have very little to do with dancing!

By – Robyn Tedesco

Adapted from 20 reasons your Child should take Gymnastics – POSTED BY JAG GYM ON SEPTEMBER 22, 2014 -A great article that crosses over well to dance.


What if Suzy never learns a pirouette? Or how about if Janie never masters a straight leg jete? Would there still be any value in putting your preschooler in a dance class?

Yes, I say.

Absolutely, yes.

In addition to it being a lot of fun, here are twenty reasons your preschool aged child should do dance that have nothing to do with learning dance.

  1. Separation. Learning to leave your parent or caregiver in the lobby while you go into class is the beginning of learning how to separate before a child goes to school. The ability to adjust to new situations is an important part of a preschoolers’ education.
  2. Following directions. Dance teaches kids to follow multi-stepped directions. Learning an exercise, combination or routine and remember what to do at next is far more than simply dance training.
  3. Following safety rules. Listening to the rules of how we keep ourselves safe in the dance class (especially acro dance) helps children learn how to follow rules at home and school. It places an importance on the concept of personal safety that is relevant for life.
  4. No one likes waiting, especially 3, 4 and 5 year olds! Practicing standing in line for short periods of time and containing your excitement as you wait for your turn to show the teacher your movement. This is a way that dance teaches patience.
  5. Working cooperatively. From holding hands in a gallop to acro partner work dance teaches that we can work together for a common purpose.
  6. Responsibility in cleaning up. Learning to put your cartwheel mat back in acro class or the barres back in ballet is an important skill and one that many parents will be grateful to have their preschooler master next time there are Legos all over the house!
  7. Conflict resolution. It’s not easy when you don’t get to be first. Or you don’t get to be the leader. Or you are unable to stand next to your favorite friend in line. Dance teaches these lessons and helps children learn appropriate ways to resolve their conflicts.
  8. Interacting appropriately with adults and peers. Learning to have good manners and speak in a way that is respectful is an important skill for preschoolers to learn. Dance class helps a child learn to treat the teacher with respect and how to navigate social dynamics with their preschool peers.
  9. Dancers must try and try again to achieve even the simplest of skills. Dance teaches kids to stay with an activity until it’s completed.
  10. Combining listening, respect for rules and patience leads to discipline.   When a child has the basics of discipline, self-discipline is the next step: the ability to self-regulate behavior.
  11. Coordination.
    Dance develops fine motor skills, gross motor skills, balance and core strength as well as coordination.
  12. Asking for help. Young dancers learn how to ask for help from their dance teacher and are encouraged at MWG to ask questions relevant to the understanding of the movement.
  13. Coping with jealousy. Inevitably another child will learn a skill more quickly, run a race faster or be chosen to lead the line for the day, and your preschooler will not like it. Dance class gives your child an opportunity to cope with those yucky feelings and express them appropriately.
  14.  Move with Grace Dance studio stresses the importance of doing the right thing, even when the teacher isn’t looking. Preschool dance begin developing this important skill in class.
  15. Dancers must make mistakes in order to learn. They must “fall down” and get back up again over and over again.
  16. When you learn to keep trying in order to achieve a goal, it is called grit. Educators around the nation understand the relationship between achievement and grit.   Watching that same resilient four year old persist at learning a movement is laying the groundwork for a child who possesses grit.
  17. The value of effort. Dance is not an easy sport. However, if children try hard they will see progress. They will understand the relationship between effort and success.
  18. Ambition. Setting lofty goals and believing that you have the capacity to reach them is the core of what it means to ambitious.   Watching older kids move with grace and thinking that someday, if you work hard, that you can do that too, is the beginning of ambition.
  19. Courage. Putting yourself out in front of others is scary. A dance recital can be intimidating. It is when we face something that pushes us out of our comfort zone that we have the opportunity to develop courage. Courage is not only being brave when we fear something but it is also a trait we can call upon when we have to do something that we do not wish to do, like chores or homework, all things that preschooler will be learning to cope with in the not-too-distant future.
  20. Self-confidence. Is it any wonder that a child who develops all of these traits also develops self-confidence? Self-confidence is, simply put, your belief in yourself. If you are able to do class on your own, following the rules and directions, getting along with your peers, understanding that you are an able learner and that failing is ok because you are ambitious, have courage and grit is it any surprise that you are self-confident?

So, while I hope all of the Suzy’s and Janie’s enrolled in a preschool dance program learn great basic skills, have a lot of fun doing so, possibly falling in love with dance and going on to stick with it through their childhoods, in the last analysis, these twenty traits will serve them well no matter where their athletic career goes.


We would love to teach your child the love of dance and all of these skills @

Move with Grace Dance studio – In Fergus and Cambridge Ontario



Crock Pots and Crazy Schedules|Move With Grace Dance Studios Cambridge and Fergus

Crock Pots and Crazy Schedules|Move With Grace Dance Studios Cambridge and Fergus

Well I don’t know about you but today my chore list is LOOOONGG! I have yet to find all three of my kids lunch bags… which they assure me got placed somewhere in the laundry room last day of school. I would like to be sure the house is in tip top shape going into next week and I would like one more sit down at the table “proper” supper before activities begin for all three kids and every supper but Sunday seems to come from a crock pot … LIKE if you can relate!! However I think Moms like us (and dad’s) who spend most evening running 2 or 4 kids in three different directions … we do so by choice. The easy route is to sit on the couch and watch t.v. or knit … We choose to spend our time, energy and money in the arena and soccer field and dance studio …. WHY? For me it is simple. Yes … I think the kids in the dance studio and on the soccer field are more focused and have parents that care. Yes I like to know my kids friends and there is no better way to do that then knowing what they are like watching their own child… but for me the simple reason… I LOVE watching them dance. I love seeing them smilie! So … here is to another year of lunches and homework and crazy dance schedules. It is a fun ride. I do hope you join us. The picture below is my youngest 8 year old Ashlyn –

Move With Grace Dancer Recognized as a Community Ambassador of Active Excellence

Ellyna Tedesco a Senior dancer with Move With Grace Dance Studios Cambridge Ontario has been highlighted by Active Cambridge as an Ambassador of Active Excellence and role model for youth in our Community.  This short Video sequence was produced for the National Sports Day activities sponsored by Active Cambridge and features Ellyna for presentation to youth at a rally later this month.  Well Done Elly!



Finding Family Time in a Busy Week|Move With Grace Dance Studio Cambridge ON

Finding Family Time in a Busy Week|Move With Grace Dance Studio Cambridge ON


I recently  read an article  about embracing mornings as family time.   If your house is anything like mine mornings are crazy!  Typically someone has a melt down about not being able to find socks or I am sending kids back up stairs with two minutes to get out the door because they did not brush their teeth.

The thought of mornings being a wonderful family time seems strange to me.  However with the kids busy schedule and our crazy lives it is true that we do not sit around the table often as a family.  We try to do Sunday suppers with proper place settings and manners but as soon as we are into our competitive dance  season that routine is totally out the window.  So the family Sunday supper lasts September  through to December in our house.

There are 168 hours in a week.  Typically in our society we now work about 50 hours and sleep about 56 hours but what has happened to the other 62?  Facebook and personal emails eat up about 2 hours a day but that is still only 14 hours and then television and books maybe another 2 to 3 hours a day that still should leave 27 hours of free time.  Then church or quiet meditation perhaps another 2 hours per week.  However I doubt that there is a single person reading this that believes they have 25 hours of free time in their week to spend with their family.

Most of us spend the other at least 15 hours shuffling our kids  to Move with Grace dance studio, or hockey or gymnastics and sitting in the lobby of the dance studio or on a bench in an aerna.  I often talk to mothers at the dance studio that feel that they spend more time with one child then the other due to the kids activities.  I know it was a happy day in my house when all three kids decided to take  dance lessons.  One activity, one place to drive however it has not solved the problem that we do not eat together as a family?

Why is this important?  I want connection with my kids and my husband.   I want them to know table manners  and I would like to start my day with what is truly important,  family.

We are so rushed in our daily lives. Here is the challenge.  Get up earlier.  Before the kids.  Have your coffee and start your day with something for you.  A meditation,  answering personal emails, a run or going to the gym.   The most sucessful people in the world are reported on average to be up and going by 5:58 am.

Set the table and make pancakes and bacon.

Do it for a week …. see if it works for your family.

I am putting a comment box on my blog!  Let me know if you, my Move with Grace Dance studio parents,  are up for the challenge and if it works for you!

PS: If you are a Cambridge Winter Hawk family or Cambridge Kips Gymnastics family, feel free to chyme in as well 🙂

Robyn Tedesco – Artistic Director

Move With Grace Dance Studio Cambridge ON






The power of words

The power of words

“The way we talk to our children becomes their inner voice.” – Peggy O’mara.   Surfing Facebook this week I saw this quote and it really resonated with me.  We all know this to be true but holding ourselves accountable to constantly monitor our speech must become for most of us a concious decision.  Not that any of us intend to snap at our children but when you are exhausted from working and cleaning all day and they come in,  drop their coat in the hall,  throw the  book bag on the living room couch,  forget to take their shoes off tracking mud all over the floor you scrubbed this afternoon,  and leave the wrapper from the granola bar on the kitchen counter.  Most of us are ready to blow!IMG_0458 Often the impulse to speak harshly depends on your mood or your day.  How did your boss speak to you today?  How did that client react to you being late for the meeting?  Did your husband show gratitude for the meal you spent hours making?  Then the kids demand.  Did you wash my jeans for tonight?  Are you driving me to dance?  Can I have $20?  Easy to take it out on them with out even realizing.  I am not placing judgement here.  I have been this parent.  I am sure if we are honest we all have. You may feel a little spent,  too tired to “watch your words.”  However words have a tremendous amount of power.  They have the power to unite nations,  build people up,  or tear them down. Remember pretty woman?  “The bad stuff is easier to believe.”   We as parents and coaches and teachers need to fill our kids so full with positive speech and images of themselves that no one can tear them down.  Now I am not saying tell them they are the best at something that they are not … Always be impecable with your word and speak towards truth and love and you will never go wrong. I also believe that we must adopt an “it takes a village”  mentality to make the quote successful.  Teachers, coaches and mentors words can many times have almost as much of an impact on a developing child as a parent.  I know that the many of the values and believes I have came from teachers and coaches.  I distintly remember my grade 10 history teacher asking me if I had ever considered becoming a teacher because he thought I would be good at it.  My dance teacher started using me as an assistant in the classroom when I was 14 and constantly told me what a good teacher I would be.   Due to their words and encouragement I never doubted my ability to teach however the opposite could have easily been said to me and my life would have taken a very different direction. Often it is not what we say to the children or people around us but how we word it.  Anthony Robbins calls this Neuro Lingustic programming and he is a fasinating read if you get the time. Here are a few very simplistic examples of turning negative statements into positive ones: Instead of saying “Don’t slam the door,”   say “please close the door gently.” Instead of saying “Stop running in the lobby,”  say ” Please use your walking feet.” Instead of saying “Stop making so much noise,”  say “Please be a little more quiet” These are not statements in the negative that are going to cause a child to go down a bad path but it is just a little change in wording that brings a positive spin on the situation and may perhaps defuse the negative energy. If you want to test yourself try this.  Give your self a one week negativity diet.   Trust me this will be the most difficult diet you will every take on.  No negative thoughts about yourself,  your house,  your bills,  your child’s eating habits, or that barking dog next door.  Find a way for one week to turn everything into a positive.  Be grateful.  Above all be kind to yourself.  We parents are working hard and loving our kids. Thank you for entrusting your children to me as their teacher!  I promise to do my best to look at the positive in each child.

The first dance class | Move With Grace Dance Studio Cambridge ON

The first dance class | Move With Grace Dance Studio Cambridge ON

A special read for parents of 3 and 4 year olds

The Dance of Independence
Dance class may be the 1st time children are separated from their parents.
The new place and people can be frightening at first, until the child becomes comfortable in the class.
Many children take the first few classes to watch or participate
This is normal and as long as they are learning, there is no problem!
Other children may take several weeks to get used to the class.
Though your child may feel safer with you in the room, remember that other children may be shy in your pres-
ence, so parents are encouraged to wait in the lobby if possible. (you can still see them from our lobby)
So what do you do if your child is scared?
? Explain what dance class will be like several times before coming to class.
? Watch other children in classes.
? Come early to look around the studio and to transition into the room.
? Encourage your child to teach YOU the class after they take class. They learn to appreciate dancing with and
without you.
? Make a plan with the child for you to move further away each lesson.
? Set a time for hugs and kisses before and after class.
? Let the child tell you how they could make class feel safer- a teddy to stand in for you
? Value this dance of independence for what it is!

Trust that the MWG staff are all kid loving adults and we are excited to have your child in our studio

Don’t be afraid to talk to Robyn or Jim if you have a concern. Robyn has been teaching dance for over 20 years, we have been looking after the kids in cambridge for 9 year and we have 3 of our own 🙂

Your kids will do great

call if you have questions 519 650 6533

Never Let Fear Limit Your Success

Move With Grace Dance Studios Cambridge

eiffel 771071Gustave Eiffel, designer of the Eiffel Tower, enjoyed a successful career as an architect despite having dyslexia and a paralyzing fear of heights.

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