Forum: General / Jazz / Jazz - Beginners

Jazz - Beginners
Any advice please???
By MissKatie1 Comments: 3, member since Fri Jul 25, 2008
On Fri Jul 25, 2008 05:06 AM

In 3 weeks i will be starting to teach jazz dances to a group of high school kids (13-16). These kids have NO experience at all. I have danced and taught for 11 years beginners to advanced but never TEENAGE beginners....has anyone ever been in this position?? How do i teach them the basics and do decent warm-ups without them feeling stupid??? Any advice would be GREAT :) :)

6 Replies to Any advice please???

re: Any advice please???
By liltapdollmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 143, member since Fri Aug 31, 2007
On Fri Jul 25, 2008 11:59 AM
Try talking to them like adults, not like children you've taught. Don't be afraid to challenge them either, see how quick they can pick things up and dont go over the same move a thousand times. Good Luck!
re: Any advice please???
By ballet_rox_sox Comments: 428, member since Sun Jan 20, 2008
On Fri Jul 25, 2008 03:12 PM
Remember to use really 'in' songs for dances and excercises because then the teens will want to show their friends the cool dances to the cool songs!
re: Any advice please???
By tresbienmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1104, member since Sun Feb 17, 2008
On Fri Jul 25, 2008 03:34 PM
yea

start with kick-ball-change, chasse-ball-change, grapevine and jazz square

(i assist a PreJazz I class, so maybe teens might not like that)

and for warmups do what you would do for a class of advanced teens
re: Any advice please???
By MissKatie1 Comments: 3, member since Fri Jul 25, 2008
On Fri Jul 25, 2008 05:19 PM
thanks :) i'll do my best!
re: Any advice please???
By Jadamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 1491, member since Fri Aug 24, 2007
On Tue Aug 12, 2008 12:45 PM
Treat them like they are adults. If I were just starting dance at my age (their age) I wouldn't want to be treated like a little kid.

For warm up, start slow. Do runners stretches, wide 4ths, straddle stretches and start working on splits. Then do some jumping jack and running around the room to get them warm and ready.

Start with the basics: chasses, jetes, pas de bourees (sp?), pirouette preps eventually leading into single pirouettes, step batments, fan kicks, ball changes, and jazz walks/runs. If they are picking up things fairly quickly try center leaps and double pirouettes. Eventually you might even be able to start them on foutte preps at the bar and starting into fouettes.

Also try and make them feel comfortable. I'm not sure of the rules concerning dress code but they might be more willing to "let go" if they don't have to wear a leotard and tights. Or at least let them wear shorts or jazz pants over it.

Use popular songs too. The first day ask the dancers what some of their favorite songs are. Not only will this be a good ice breaker but you can do combinations to those songs.

Good luck!
re: Any advice please???
By dancingincereal Comments: 767, member since Wed Feb 21, 2007
On Thu Aug 21, 2008 08:06 AM
-keep them interested
-ask them why theyre there
-ask if theres anything that theyd like to learn
-ask if theres any songs that they want to to combinations to (burn a cd with the music on it, or ask them if they can burn it on a cd for you. take it home and listen to it and see if it works. if it works then use it.)

*i taught a beginner acro class for girls 10-13ish, and you really had to get to know them. it took them some time to get to trust me, but once they trusted me they told me everything about themselves.

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