How to choose a dance school in Brisbane
When we imagine a dance class, we often envisage young children learning to plié and point their toes. However, there is far more to dancing than this and choosing the right studio for your child is crucial for nurturing their lifelong love of dance. We chat with Bonnie Ross from Radiance Dance Academy to find out her tips for choosing a dance studio that best suits your child.
Firstly, why consider dance as an activity for your child? Tell us more!
There are so many styles of dance, and although they’re all different, they have a lot in common. Dance teaches our children coordination, confidence and resilience that will support them throughout their lives. By attending dance classes, children build friendships, develop social skills and learn about teamwork. And, of course, dance builds strength and fitness!
What is the number one thing you should look for when choosing a dance school for your child?
Like a ballet slipper, it’s about the fit! A dance studio may have an excellent reputation but may not be right for your child. Most studios will offer a trial class.
If your child attends a trial class and loves it, you may have found the right school! Most of all, though, trust your child’s instincts—they need to be happy and comfortable.
What else should you look for?
Studio culture is the next thing we encourage parents to look for. At Radiance, we value discipline, teamwork, respect for one another, community and, most importantly, a love of dance.
To help our students get the most from their classes, we have small, capped class numbers that allow for individual correction and attention. And we ensure our students know that the process is more important than the outcome—we love to celebrate their achievements!
The culture at Radiance is supportive, empowering and fosters progress over perfection.
There are a few things we suggest parents look for in a studio’s culture:
First and foremost, the studio must nurture a love of dance; it needs to be an encouraging and supportive environment that inspires students to do their best! You want your child to love going to their dance class. Not only will this help them get the most from their lesson, but it is reassuring for you to know they’re enjoying themselves.
Secondly, the teachers need to be qualified and experienced, with a passion for dancing and teaching. In Australia, the dance industry is unregulated, so be sure to speak with the studio director about their teachers’ qualifications. You want to ensure your child is being taught by someone who has studied dance formally, learned how to teach and engage children and knows how to incorporate safe dance practices into their classes.
Finally, look to the parents—how they interact with each other, and speak to the teachers and other children will tell you so much.
What style of dance is best for children?
There is no right or wrong answer here.
If a child has a preference, start with that! However, if your child doesn’t show a preference, we recommend choosing a class that combines styles.
At Radiance Dance Academy, we have a popular Tiny Tot Combo class combining ballet and jazz, offering young children the opportunity to learn both styles.
We believe children should be encouraged to try as many styles as possible and then pursue those that light them up. Whether it’s ballet, jazz, hip hop, acrobatics, or acting, dancing and singing in a Theatre class—there is a style for every child.
Parents should look for a studio offering several dance styles, passionate, qualified teachers, classes that balance discipline with fun, and a happy, positive culture and embrace it!