Last week on Saturday, October 12, our Dance Around the World (DATW) program kicked off with the Jazz session. In this 8-month program, participants 6-8 years old enjoy an hour of movement, learning, and creativity based on the featured dance.
At RPL, we offer Tiny Tykes for ages 1-3 and Storytime for ages 3-5 every week. After hearing a few patrons ask for a program for children who are too old for these programs, Dance Around the World was created. Since this program is focused on the kids who are leaving Storytime, it acts as a transition from Storytime to an introductory book club. After every session, participants can choose one or two themed books and take them home. Over the next month, they can explore their book(s) and record any interesting facts or stories on their handouts. They can then share their findings with the group during the first 5-10 minutes of the next DATW session. This way, the kids can practice the listening and communication skills involved in discussion.
Here’s a look at our typical schedule for DATW sessions:
- Introductions (if there are new attendees)
- Review and discussion of last month’s dance and books
- Attendance activity
- A look at history, geography, fun facts, and videos related to the dance
- Learning dance steps
- Dance time
- Wrap-up and checking out books
Each child receives a folder to hold their name tag, handouts, schedule, and any other materials. Since the program is once a month, the collected materials and review time help the attendees remember what was already covered and compare each dance to the next.
In November, we will focus on Flamenco dancing. Check our events page, calendar, and social media to keep up with the dance of the month. Attendees do not have to attend every program to participate. As long as there is space open, your child can jump in at any time.
The most important thing to remember about this program is that there is no pressure to memorize facts or dance steps. Attendees are not expected to like every dance or find every book that they check out to be interesting. The goal of DATW is to be exposed to different cultures, countries, music, and art. When we worry less about memorization and focus on having fun, learning becomes a favorite activity.
This program will continue until May. Call the library (724-379-5511), stop in, or register online to reserve your child’s spot.
If you would like to see this level of programming continue, please make a donation to Rostraver Public Library. You can donate directly by clicking this link.
Thank you for your support.
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