Put on Your Dancing Shoes

“An artist cannot fail, it is a success just to be one.” Charles Horton Cooley

Heart-a-Day #11: La La Land

I never miss an opportunity to add movement to a lesson. The Theory of Multiple Intelligence, developed by Howard Gardner, teaches us that children learn through many different modalities. Bodily-Kinesthetics is a theory of learning that incorporates the entire body. When we add movement to a song or story, student comprehension increases. When my class reads “Where the Wild Things Are,” by Maurice Sendak, we have a real rumpus. We sing and dance to the vintage rock song, “Wild Thing,” by the Troggs. By the end of the school year, my students know the Sendak story inside and out, carrying their learning from it to other lessons. I especially like having the students dance the Macarana to practice counting to twelve. Before you scoff, count out the movements. One of our classroom mantras is that we move when we’re singing so our brains get bigger – and we can learn even more.

When can you add movement to a lesson? How about adding dance to retell a story? Can you deepen a Social Studies lesson by incorporating a song with movement? Go ahead, put on your dancing shoes and start teaching.


(Access to these photographs does not constitute a transfer of copyright or a license for commercial use. The images are for personal use only. No portion of the images can be used without the expressed written permission of Michael B. Stanley, Jr.)

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I am an artist, musician, author and kindergarten teacher wanting to share what I have learned about teaching and making art.

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