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Creative Dance Routines for a Talent Show for Kids

by Ashley K. Alaimo

Talent shows for children are a wonderful way to build self-confidence in front of an audience of friends and family. Dance is a great way for kids to express themselves using their bodies. Help your child pick a song that is short, age-appropriate and fun to dance to. It is OK if your child has never taken a dance lesson. This exciting talent is all about telling the audience a story through body language.

Hula Dancing

The hula is a form of dance that derives from the state of Hawaii is. The hula conveys emotion via moving your body using steps and hand motions. Teach your child some basic steps to perform during a traditional hula song, such as Hukilau song. The kahola step is a simple step-together move that you can repeat throughout a song. It can be complex, but make it simple for your child by omitting difficult patterns and keeping it relaxed. Stand with your feet together and take a step sideways to the right. Bring your feet together again by moving your left foot to meet your right. Move to the right again. Switch directions and step to the left, bringing your feet together with your right foot. Repeat the move to the left. Sing the words with your child and use your hands to mime the words of the song, such as catching fish with a net and putting your hands to your heart to describe love. For costumes, create grass skirts out for grocery bags and fraying the ends with scissors.

Tap Dancing

Tap is a rhythmic dance that you can perform with or without shoes that have taps on the toes and heels. The steps are quick and punctuated, but can easily be adapted to fit the age and ability of the dancer. Encourage your child to follow you as you teach him how to tap dance. Stand up straight and stick one foot out, tapping the toe of the shoe on the ground four times Do this with the right and left side, bringing your feet together as you switch sides. Gently swing the leg back, brushing the bottom of the foot on the ground, and tap the toe behind you four times. Return to a neutral position in between the foot switch. Start a new dance by placing your right heel on the floor with your toes pointing upward, making a noise as you touch the ground. Repeat each heel-touch four times on both sides. Next, show your child how to perform a ball-change by stepping back with the right foot and rocking back to the front foot. Organize these steps to a song with a strong beat and your tap dance is complete.

Creative Movement

A creative movement dance uses scarves, ribbons and streamers to punctuate graceful moves. Create these dance props by going to the craft store and attaching the colored materials to wooden dowels, or even paper towel rolls from home. A creative movement routine does not have to be strictly choreographed. Turn on some music and let your child move her body, waving the dance props up, down and in a circle. Mark her favorite moves and set them to instrumental music, such as a snippet from Antonio Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons.” Think of a story she wants to tell, such as flowers growing, rain falling or trees blowing in the wind. She can also use a multitude of props in her dance by placing them on the floor and switching throughout the song.

Line Dancing

Line dancing is a popular type of movement that you can see at weddings, dances and other social events. The most well-known line dance is the Electric Slide, originally choreographed by Ric Silver. Gather a group of children for this act and line them up, one next to another. Have them step to the right two times, bringing their left foot to the right, and clap the hands on the last step. Repeat the move to the left. Show the children how to step backwards three times. Clap, and then bend forward and back, rolling your arms. You can keep the group facing forward as they repeat the dance, or make it a four-wall dance by turning their line clockwise after each sequence. To make this act memorable, invite the audience to join the dance by standing up in their seats.

About the Author

Ashley K. Alaimo is a writer, blogger and certified teacher in New York. She has a master's degree in elementary education and early childhood education from Medaille College, as well as a bachelor's degree in music and theater from Buffalo State College. Alaimo has also worked as an education specialist with ages birth to 12 years old, creating classroom and enrichment curriculum for various early childhood centers.

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