Dance is a cultural universal seen or used in every culture for various reasons. It is known as a universal language through its use of expression to share stories and ideas. Dance in itself is the movement of one’s body in a rhythmic way to either express themselves, move energy, or for self-fulfillment, often used for entertainment, spirituality, military, health, and enjoyment; hence, playing an important role in people’s lives. However, the majority of people never delve deeper into this form of expression, despite our innate connection to dance from a young age. Learning dance allows for many important skills to be developed in an adolescent all pertaining to why dance classes should be offered in all schools and not just schools specialized for the arts.
Dance is a fun and creative way to stay healthy for both youth and adults. No doubt, there are children who hate participating in gym class. Running is just not for everyone. But, with dance, children are exercising without even realizing it half of the time. As well, dance is a form of aerobic exercise improving stamina, cardio, flexibility, strength, and posture. It is an effective way to combat obesity and other weight issues among children, and so not only does it help with physical health, but also mental health.
As dance is a form of communication, it is often used as a method of expression. Children suffering from mental health issues like depression can use dance as a tool to express their emotions. Dance helps an individual’s overall well-being as it is a creative and safe outlet for children who suffer from behavioural and mood disorders. Even for children who do not suffer any sort of severe mental health issue, dance can also be an outlet to combat the stress of school, giving children a necessary break from the troubles and stress that they are facing.
Dance is also known to help academic performance in school. Dance improves both sides of the brain as it forces the dancer to use mathematics when counting music and learning rhythms, as well as understanding their own body's health, and develops strong literacy skills. Dance students are found to have an advantage specifically in academic language studies, but also receive higher SAT scores excelling in math and science.
Dance does not only improve academic skills, but also vital social skills for life. Dance forces children to work together and learn how to create and communicate to come out with the desired outcome. Children are made to work together and understand each other on different levels whether it means being in unison when dancing or working together to do a lift. Therefore, also helping to develop trust, relieve anxiety, and quick thinking when having to deal with challenging tasks!
Finally, dance allows for creative thinking and control that many children lack education in. Children need a place to let their imagination and self-expression run wild, something that is often not allowed in schools, as teachers are made to follow strict curriculums. With dance being taught in schools, children are able to have a creative outlet and use their own imagination and minds to create and express emotions and thoughts. Through creative thinking, they will be able to come up with new ways to problem solve and develop skills!
Barron, Hannah. “The Importance of Dance in Education” Dance Stables. 22 February2018. https://www.dancestables.co.uk/post/2018/02/22/the-importance-of-dance-in-education
Education Sports. “4 Reasons to Include Dance in Your School Curriculum” Amaven. 2 April 2019. https://www.amaven.co.uk/blog/4-reasons-to-include-dance-in-your-school-curriculum
The Dance Centre Peregian Springs.“The Importance of a Dance Education”. The Dance Centre Peregian Springs. 18 July 2016.https://www.thedancecentreperegiansprings.com/single-post/2016/07/18/the-importance-of-a-dance-education
Woodard, Meagen. “Dance: The Universal Language of Storytellers”. Ouachita Baptist University. 2020. https://scholarlycommons.obu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1770&context=honors_theses#:~:text=Dance%20is%20a%20universal%20language,door%20for%20communication%20across%20cultures.