Whether you’ve been dancing for years, just beginning or thinking about signing your child up for dance, choosing a dance studio that’s right for you can be a bit intimidating. Doing a simple Google search for dance studios in your area will introduce you to several studios in your hometown, not to mention dozens more within driving distance. But how do you decide what is right for you? Before you select a studio, take these factors into consideration.
For the Tiny Dancers
If you have a little one just starting out, look for a class that encompasses multiple elements of dance, such as tap and ballet. This provides your budding dancer with a good foundation to help determine not just if they love dance, but what type of dance they love. Meet with teachers to get a good understanding of their experience with dance and children.
Competition, Pre-Professional or Recreational?
If you or your child are just starting out, a recreational school may be the right fit for you. Recreational schools still focus on technique and form, however, they are not as likely to enter into dance competitions. Classes offered may be less or shorter, since the primary goal here is to learn and have fun.
Competition schools, however, will accelerate your or your child’s training as synchronized and intense training is the goal. Keep in mind, competitions come with added costs of costumes, entry fees and travel.
Pre-professional schools are designed to prepare the dancer to enter university dance programs, as well as the professional world of dance upon graduation. Class attendance in pre-professional is usually by audition only. Pre-professional schools often require a more extensive time commitment.
Sometimes, it is all about who you know, or who knows you. If you’ve chosen to go competition or pre-professional, check into the studio’s accreditations. Some studios are non-profit, have endowments, and participate in certain competitions. Find out if your goals and beliefs align with these organizations. Ask other parents or friends who are involved in the dance community. Even visiting a dancewear store, like DanceWear Corner, where you can ask about studios in the area, may help.
Drop In Classes
Many studios allow you to take a drop in class before registering, while others may offer introductory classes at the beginning of the year. This can give you a feel for the teachers, the space, allow you to talk to other students or parents, and see how the school functions.
Go with Your Gut
Trust your instincts. If a studio or teacher is not right for you, it’s okay to change class or studio mid-way through the year. Before you do, however, talk to your teacher to determine why it doesn’t feel right.
What are your thoughts? How have you decided to choose the dance studio you attend? Leave us a comment here or on social media.