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Do You Treat Boys Differently Than Girls In Your Class

Do you treat boys the same way that you do girls in your class? Because I teach dance to both boys and girls I sometimes get this question. Thankfully not as much as I did 20 years ago when I first started teaching in private and preschools. At that time people, especially fathers were really concerned about this. NO SON OF MINE IS GOING TO BE DANCING AROUND IN A TUTU! I would then ask them do you want your son to have better eye hand coordination, self confidence, be physically fit, learn what he can do with both his body and mind, score higher on standardized tests than his peers and a whole host of other benefits. The children do not have to change their clothes for the class. They would then stare at me with a blank face for a second then shake their heads and say “I don’t know let me think about it some more.”

THE BENEFITS OF PITTER PATTER FEET CLASSES

When I have the time I explain to both parents how my classes differ from traditional dance classes and also how they are the similar. In addition to being a dance teacher I am also an Early Childhood Consultant and Trainer. This really helps me out a great deal, as a trainer and consultant I am required to take professional development and continuing education classes in Early Childhood Development and related topics. Doing this keeps me up to date and current on the many different methods and techniques as well as theories related to young children. I also have to stay abreast of all of the latest cartoons, characters and artists that the children love and current dance moves.

Parents, directors and teachers are getting two people for the price of one. Their children are getting the expertise of both a dance teacher that’s been teaching kids since 1986 and an Early Childhood Consultant and Trainer. This is why in Pitter Patter Feet classes the emphasis is not on dance. Although dance is the main component of the class as well as creative movement, the development of the child emotional, socially and physically are also just as important. Not only is a healthy and fit body important but also creative and artistic expression and developing a healthy and fit mind. The two go and hand in hand. But the biggest component of all of these is FUN!

LEARNING AND FUN ARE NUMBER ONE

I have found that when I make sure the children have fun learning is a breeze. I also want them to not just learn steps, or vocabulary or techniques I also want them to learn about themselves and other people. I want them to try new things and explore and laugh a lot. I want them to learn that if at first they don’t succeed try and try again and that eventually with time they will get it. I keep things fast paced and ever changing because that’s what their attention spans and level of development require. I expose them to different types of music as well as dance disciplines, like Tap, African, Hip Hop, Ballet and Jazz. Both boys and girls benefit from all of this.

THERE ARE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN BOYS AND GIRLS IN CLASS

My challenge week after week is to find a blend of activities that are good for both boys and girls and also are boy oriented and girl oriented. So there are activities in the class like dribbling and shooting balls, kicking balls, catching and throwing, tumbling, pretending to be race car driver, soccer playing and bowling with blocks that may be a little different from traditional classes. Boys love to run and jump more than girls and girls love to sing more than boys. So both the differences in the genders as well as what needs to be worked on are done.

Thank you for taking a peek into our classroom. I hope it gives you a pretty good idea of what goes on in the class and why both boys and girls have a great time in our class. If you are a Pitter Patter Feet parent please feel free to watch a class at your school. Also if you have any additional questions or concerns please leave a comment below.

5 Responses to “Do You Treat Boys Differently Than Girls In Your Class”

  1. Interesting. At first glance you want to make sure that both boys and girls have the same access to success, but in order to make sure that the strengths of both sexes are recognized and utilized, you use those differences to add value for everyone. That is awesome!

  2. I think dance classes can be great for boys. Boys love music and they love moving around. There are many cultures where dance is an important and fulfilling activity for men. It’s great to read that you are so encouraging and accommodating of boys in your classes.

    • D'TaRelle F. Tullis says:

      Thank you so much Tracey. You are absolutely right dance classes are great for boys. They do love music, using their imagination and moving around. It is also a fulfilling activity for everyone. Would you happen to know what cultures where dance is an important activity for men. This would be great to know and share with others.

  3. My husband and I were just discussing this very topic today as we peeked in on a ballet class and my 3 yr. old son said that he wanted to take ballet. My husband asked me what I thought and I said why not. I don’t know that this particular class has ever had any boys in it, and I worry that it may not be set up for the busyness that is my little man. Guess I’ll never know it unless we try. Thank you for this wonderful post!

    • D'TaRelle F. Tullis says:

      YYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!! Thank you so much Trisha for keeping an open mind. Your husband deserves acknowledgement too for both being open minded and trusting your judgement. I agree with you whole heartedly, definitely go for it and see what your little man thinks. I would also talk with the instructor too and express your concerns. I’m sure they will welcome your little man with open arms and he’ll have a blast!

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