When You Have Ballet In Your Life

baby ballerinas

A child is like a butterfly in the wind. Some can fly higher than others, but each one flies the best it can. Why compare one against the other Each one is different, each one is special, each one is beautiful.




When I came across this quote on the internet, I thought of the ballet dancers that I am entrusted with each day …each one different, each one special and mostly each one beautiful….As adorable as they can be and all try to be my “best friend”, I am still “tough” on them…. with love, and they know that I expect results. That is how they give me what they truly have inside.

A dance teacher, a ballet teacher to be exact, needs to have a relationship with her dancers but the dancers also need to know when she means “business”. I feel that a teacher should always expect excellence from her dancers, always. A lazy class is never to be accepted. The dancers come into the dance school right after a six hour school day and they are tired of being instructed, and disciplined. It is the dance teacher’s job to keep fun and discipline all wrapped together at this point. The dance teacher should also expect results from what she is handing out to the dancers that day and nothing less.

Some fly higher that others, but each one flies the best it can….

Each day I see different abilities in the dancers that I teach, although they are in class according to their ability and age, as best as the school can accommodate. But each dancer will give me what they have inside them. What they feel that dance is worth to them. Dance can be felt as an emotion. As the class feels the music, as the class time progresses, that is the results I will see. They may not always be the results that I am wishing, but it is what they are feeling inside. Happy, sad, tired, excited and most of all yearning for dance knowledge.

Each one special, each one different, each one beautiful….

There are so many positive effects that ballet has on children. In my 37 plus years of teaching dance I have seen this often. Ballet can help children grow physically, emotionally and intellectually. Not only is structured choreography helpful but the music can be inspirational as well.

On the physical side, ballet helps children with strength, posture and flexibility. I have taught ballet to children with disabilities and I have seen so much physical progress and so much joy in their lives. I have even had the privilege to have taught a deaf child ballet and to see the happiness she had while dancing was beauty in itself.

Ballet can help a shy child come out of her shell, and become the music that she hears while yet ballet provides more structure to the active child. The discipline of ballet is perfect for both of these types of children. In the shy child she will enable herself to come forward and dance in the mirror, become a character and interact with the other dancers in her class. The active child will be taught to move only when others are moving, stand exactly how others are standing and being what the teacher and music is telling them.

Exposure to activities, like ballet, help children to become more well rounded individuals. Dancing is a great medium for both girls and boys, and should be started at a young age for the most benefit. As the children grow ballet may get pushed aside in favor of tap, hip-hop, jazz and other dance forms, but the foundation of all dance, is ballet. Parents, never let your child drop a ballet class in favor of a different dance class. If the dancer is instructed in ballet, they can do any style of dance. As the middle school age comes around, of those who have dropped ballet class, regret it. In these years the dancer becomes serious in their training and without ballet class in their foundation, they will be at the bottom. As a dancer continues to pursue ballet, more benefits will emerge.

I must say that this post is most definitely directed to the dancers in my charge. Each one is different, each one is special and each one is beautiful…….

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