Westside Students On the Move

Westside students in First through Fourth grade have been “on the move” this quarter in music class. They have learned several dances from around the world, including the United States, Russia, Ireland, and Sweden. In addition to counting music beats, these dances focus on motor movements such as galloping, skipping, walking, hopping, and elbow swings.

Students in Kindergarten learned several movement games, which introduce the concepts of shared space and scattered formation. At this age level, students are taught how to use up the entire space available, instead of congregating, as if attracted by magnets. This concept takes time to internalize and will become easier as the child matures.

Some of the dances learned are called “partner dances”. These dances require the students to pair up with one person for the entirety of the song. Other dances are called “mixers”. Students will have more than one partner, during the course of the dance.

Lastly, students of all grade levels played new movement games/dances that allowed boys and girls the choice to partner up or dance alone, while still part of the group. In one particular game, students are supposed to “be a statue”. The first time the music plays, students create one pose. The second time, the student needs to be two different statues. The third time, three and so on. This proved to be a challenge for many students, since they had to come up with seven altogether! Many students chose to use the latest popular move called the “dab”, which usually caused an eruption of healthy laughter. Always a welcome sound!
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