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Arts Toolkit

Arts Toolkit: Dance

Dance Lesson Plans

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Each lesson plan listing below includes the target grades, the title, a summary of the activity, and the Arts Toolkit resource used. Click on the title for the full lesson plan. Additional lesson plans can be found in the boxed Dance Arts Toolkit.

Primary

P-5 Exploring Force
Students explore the basic dance element of force through movement activities and discussion. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

K-2 Locomotor Patterns
Through a nursery rhyme and folk dance, students explore origins of food. Students perform dances based on a pattern and create a dance using the same pattern.

K-3 The Story of Wheat
Students learn the story of wheat as they explore its significance in the lives of pioneers and in their own lives.

K-5 Sharp and Smooth Movements
Students explore sharp and smooth movements.Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

1-5 Cultural and Historical Meaning
Students perform a folk dance and discuss its cultural and historical meanings.Video: Little Johnny Brown

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Intermediate

K-5 Sharp and Smooth Movements
Students explore sharp and smooth movements. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

1-5 Cultural and Historical Meaning
Students perform a folk dance and discuss its cultural and historical meanings. Video: Little Johnny Brown

4-5 Locomotor/Non-Locomotor Movements
Students perform a folk dance and learn about locomotor and non-locomotor movements. Video: Little Johnny Brown

4-8 Analyzing Two Dances and Making a Dance Map
Students watch and analyze the Arabian and Chinese dances from The Nutcracker and then create a dance map. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

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Middle

4-8 Analyzing Two Dances and Making a Dance Map
Students watch and analyze the Arabian and Chinese dances from The Nutcracker and then create a dance map. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

6-8 Dance and Community Values
Students perform a folk dance and learn about its cultural and historical meaning. Video: Little Johnny Brown

6-8 Creating a Movement Sequence
Students analyze two dances from The Nutcracker and get an understanding of how choreographers create dances by creating short movement sequences for familiar characters. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

6-8 Creating an ABA-Form Dance
Students create an ABA-form dance using sharp and smooth movements. Video: Arabian and Chinese Dances from The Nutcracker

6-8 Dancing with a Purpose
Students will perform the folk dance “Little Johnny Brown” and discuss its historical and cultural meanings. Video: Little Johnny Brown

6-12 Understanding Tap
Students demonstrate rhythm through clapping and tapping and improvise “conversations” through tap. Video: DanceSense Program 10: Tap and Percussive Dance

6-12 Funky Tap
Students research and discuss the history, characteristics, and art of tap, then create a performance critique that they will use as they watch a tap performance. Video: DanceSense Program 10: Tap and Percussive Dance Video: Jamaica Funk

The following lesson plans are not part of the Arts Toolkit:

6-12 Three Activities: Africa in the Classroom
This three-part assignment asks students to explore African visual arts, create a dance with traditional African elements, and research the history of Kente cloth and experiment with a web-based weaving.

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High

6-12 Understanding Tap
Students demonstrate rhythm through clapping and tapping and improvise “conversations” through tap. Video: DanceSense Program 10: Tap and Percussive Dance

6-12 Funky Tap
Students research and discuss the history, characteristics, and art of tap, then create a performance critique that they will use as they watch a tap performance. Video: DanceSense Program 10: Tap and Percussive Dance Video: Jamaica Funk

9-12 Creating a Contemporary Ritual Dance
Students view and discuss the dance “Little Johnny Brown” and then create a dance signifying a contemporary “ritual.” Video: Little Johnny Brown

The following lesson plans are not part of the Arts Toolkit:

6-12 Three Activities: Africa in the Classroom
This three-part assignment asks students to explore African visual arts, create a dance with traditional African elements, and research the history of Kente cloth and experiment with a web-based weaving.

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