I didn't grow up going to a traditional dance studio studying Ballet, Tap, and Jazz. In fact, until I was in high school my actual formal dance technique was fairly limited compared to the girls in the dance classes at the fine arts high school I attended. However, what I learned very quickly was that mattered little in terms of catching on and catching up. It certainly didn't impact my ability to perform alongside my more technically savvy peers.
I figured out pretty early on I didn't have the typical "dancers body". My legs weren't long enough, my flexibility was only average, my turn out was pretty pathetic. But I didn't care. I loved to dance. I decided that despite these short comings I was a good dancer. Maybe even great!
I am excited to welcome Liesa McKay to our blog! Liesa works as the studio manager at J'Adore Dance as well as an instructor in many of our programs. Liesa has a degree in Neural Psychology. Her background has been very helpful in the development of our Intellidance Babies classes at the studio. Liesa will be the co-author of our book "Baby Brain Play" which we hope to have available for sale next Spring! Thank you, Liesa, for bringing your expertise and writing to Intellidance!
We’ve all heard the expression, “Out of sight, out of mind”, but what does it really mean? As adults, when an object is “out of sight”, we know that it still exists, even though we can’t see it, or touch it, or hear it. The same cannot be said however, for babies. For the first few months of their lives, when an object is “out of sight”, in their minds, it ceases to exist!
There was a farmer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o!
B I N G O!
B I N G O!
B I N G O!
And Bingo was his name-o!
Many of us would have grown up singing Bingo. As you read the words above chances are you were singing along in your head. If you know the song you also know that as the song goes on, letters of Bingos name are replaced with claps. But did you know as you are singing in your head or replacing words with claps you are audiating?
Audiation is the process of mentally hearing music, even when no sound is present. i.e., thinking a song in your head, clapping a rhythm pattern from a song while thinking it in your head, doing actions or movements while thinking a song in your head.
Need a little giggle? Teach your baby, toddler, or preschooler this silly body parts song!
Last week I read this article: Lack of 'tummy time' causes developmental delays in children. The article describes the prevalence of "Bucket Babies", babies who are spending too much time in containers such as car seats or swings and are not getting enough tummy time. While the health sector does encourage parents to engage in tummy time there is often a lack of explanation why this is so important long term. Tummy time develops coordination and refines fine motor control for activities such as holding a pencil/writing, using scissors, tying shoes, using a zipper or catching a ball.
The synopsis from the website describes the story as follows: Little Red is sent with a basket of cookies for Granny, a motorcycle-riding go-go-dancing hip-hopping senior, when she veers off the path and is chased by B.B.Wolf, a cookie-loving rap star. The wolf's vanity is his ultimate undoing when he unwittingly finds himself in the middle of a cool dance party, clad only in Granny's pink pajamas!
Last week I had the pleasure of hosting Bria's preschool at our studio for a day of art, dance, and creativity. Over 2 days we did three field trips for the 3 classes (2 year olds, 3 year olds, and 4 year olds). And while it was very busy, it reminded me how much I enjoy teaching preschoolers! I love their innocence and willingness to express themselves. They are, for the most part, unscathed by the insecurity of impressing their peers and are much more uninhibited in their willingness to move their bodies or take risks with their art. They love the process and worry little about the product. To them the experience is purely about enjoyment and being present in the moment. I think we all should tap into our inner preschooler a little more often, we'd probably enjoy ourselves a lot more.
This version of the Brain Play™ can be used with babies as young as 6 weeks up to 18 months. These activities are based on research in early brain development and inspiration from other movement educators such as Anne Green Gilbert's BrainDance, and Beverly Stokes' Amazing Babies, and the joy I saw that these activities brought my girls from the time they were born. These activities are designed to foster your baby's body awareness, assist with early brain development, and strengthen the caregiver-baby emotional connection. Brain Play™ can take as little as 5 minutes to complete or take your time repeating favourite sections or adding movements concepts for a longer more varied experience.