How Do You Reinforce Dance?

Hard candy

Last week, we had our last class at one of the schools where Dance Daze hip hop is taught. All of the children were very excited about what I had gotten them as gifts for their last class of the semester.

When one of my 6-year-old students asked me, “Did you get us candy?” I responded, “Nope! I don’t believe in that!”

My student looked up at me, as we walked to the gym, and said, “How come? Is it because you don’t want us to have so much sugar before class and then go crazy?”

“No,” I said.  “It’s because I don’t believe in using sweets as a positive reinforcer for physical activity.”

I realized when I said it that this truly is one of my fundamental beliefs as a dance educator. Although I’m admittedly not a big sweets fan (milk chocolate, two types of ice cream, and plain cake are pretty much it for me!), I’ve never thought it was good to pair candy with dance or any physical education. (If you remember, I was even hesitant about giving out candy on Halloween!) I’m not quite sure when I developed this belief or when it became so strong, but I know that as a young dance student, my classmates and I always only received stamps and stickers for behaving well in class–never candy.

What’s your policy? Do you ever give out candy at the end of your classes or at your studio? Do you think it’s a big deal either way? Why or why not?

Happy Halloween from Dance Daze!

I think all those years of being involved with Residential Life on college campuses got me slightly addicted to doing something festive and putting a personal touch on nearly every holiday!

Because of this, I thought Halloween would be the perfect opportunity to both promote Dance Daze and encourage healthy eating!  Last night, I gave out bags of fat-free mini pretzels to my trick-or-treaters, complete with my Dance Daze business cards attached!

Halloween Snacks on DanceDaze.org

Now, I’m not going to lie: I know kids go trick-or-treating to get CANDY, not fat-free snack packs, so I did give out candy as well.  I personally examined EACH piece of candy before placing a handful in individually packaged Ziploc® bags for each trick-or-treater! I can tell a few of the kids’ parents really appreciated this!  It was quick, efficient, sanitary, and ensured that each kid got about the same amount of candy.

Halloween Candy on DanceDaze.org

I’m not sure if I’ll get any business from this promotional idea of mine, but I had lots of fun doing it, and I feel that if anything, the name Dance Daze might start to sound familiar to some kids and parents in my area.

Halloween Pumpkin on DanceDaze.org

Enjoy the rest of your week!