Dance To Learn
Activities for Home or School
Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities
All of the Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities below address the California State Standards for Kindergarten in both Dance and Reading. These activities are intended to be used at home, in an academic classroom setting or in a dance class. The Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities are addressing the following areas of the Kindergarten Dance Standard: all areas of 1.0 “Artistic Perception”, 2.2 “Response to a variety of stimuli (e.g., sounds, words, songs, props, and images) with original movements”, and dance standard 4.1 of “Describe how everyday movements can be used in dance (e.g., walk quickly, stretch slowly)” (Kindergarten, 2014) . The Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities addresses standards 1/2,1.4,1.5,1.6 of 1.0 “Word Analysis, Fluency, and Systematic Vocabulary Development” (Kindergarten-Reading, 2009). Enjoy the Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities with your child or students knowing that they are exploring their creativity and kinesthetic voice as they learn valuable fundamentals.
Begin by having the children spread out throughout your space at least arm width apart. Lead the class slowly through the alphabet one letter at a time. The children will spell out each letter of the alphabet with their bodies. Allow the children ample time between letters to explore how each letter can look and feel through their body. Children can make a “wiggly S” in the air and a “small K” on the floor. Children are free to decide how big, what parts of the body, if it is a moving letter or a still letter. These creative decisions are exciting for the children to make.
Dance Through the Alphabet
For this activity you will need space for the children to dance with ribbons or scarves. Lead the class slowly through the alphabet so that the children can use their scarf or long ribbon to write the alphabet in the air. This is a visual way for children to see the alphabet coming to life while practicing writing each letter. Challenge the children by inspiring them to write the letters smaller on the ground or to use their body to create more movement while writing the letter.
Dance Your Name
Continuing one step further with the Dance Through the Alphabet exercise have the children write their names through movement. This can lead naturally into a sharing experience where students can share their name dance with one another. As a class you can make a large circle and share the name dance one at a time in the center of the circle.
Choreographing Patterns through Movement
Creating a list of movement words, or using the movement cards provided, allow each student to choose two or three actions to create their own pattern. This is a fun and physical way for children to create patterns and challenge themselves kinesthetically. This activity can be used in a variety of ways through out the day such as:
.Have children use movement patterns to dance from point A to point B.
.Children can teach their pattern to a partner and perform for the class.
.Dancing Patterns can be used as transitions through out the day, as a fun and engaging way for children to move around the classroom.
Read Through Dance Activity
Step 1: After creating a list of vocabulary words and dance steps in class create flash cards, using template provided, with all of the vocabulary words and correlating pictures, or use movement cards that are provided. Using the Creative Movement Sentence Template provided that has 1-6 labeled on the page where the children will put the flash card that they want on each number. 1 will be the first dance step that they are to perform. 1-6 will then read like a sentence as the dancers read through the choreography choices of their classmates. Each child will be given a set of flashcards and sentence making sheet to choreograph their own dance sentences.
Step 2: As each student is given their supplies they are to break away from one another and quietly make their choreography choices that then become their dances. Another option would be to have the students work in pairs to create dance sentences together.
Sharing and Reading Their Dances:
Step 3: The children are encouraged to show each other their dance sentences and let their friends read and demonstrate their dances. This sharing and reading process is a time for students to share their work and interact with one another while cultivating creativity and the foundation of reading.
Kindergarten. (2014, January 17). - Content Standards (CA Dept of Education). Retrieved April 27, 2014, from
Kindergarten Reading. (2009, June 9).Retrieved April 27, 2014, from ds.pdf Promoting Reading Readiness Through Dance Activities.