Does Your Kid Love to Dance?

by Queenie on March 18, 2010

Image of QueenieDo you like to dance? I love to dance.

When my song comes on you just might catch me

on

the dance

floor . . .

but PATRICK!!!*

*(my eyes just got big with excitement)

He really loves to dance. You can catch him dancing. As a matter of fact, you can be right in the middle of a deep conversation and he will bust out a dance move. Its pretty funny, and a sight to see!

Now Melissa, on the other hand-well, she not quite a dancer- I can remember when we had a special dance class for her, all of my girls started to give her lessons so that she would be able to get her groove on during an upcoming vay-cay she was having-(I’m sure she’s cracking up laughing right now!)! Those poor children were fighting an uphill battle!

But, does your kid like to dance?

Maybe he doesn’t like to pull out his latest dance moves on the floor but he certainly is a professional dancer.

Does he figure out how to do everything, except for what he is supposed to be doing?

This is the quintessential dance move that all kids try at one time or another, but there are some kids who master this dance move. I know that it can be frustrating but its definitely a trait that you can learn to work with, while keep your stress level down at the same time. Don’t believe me? Read on!

Here is how it happens: it’s a normal class routine, at some point in the lesson the teacher has given a problem, project, or something for students to engage in at the independent level. If you’re a parent, picture this scenario happening with homework or a project at home. Then there is your kid, I call him Mr. Andrew. Andrew is astute, detailed, all knowing about lots of random things, funny and endearing. I mean he has the most charming face ever, and says the darndest things.

Andrew is certainly my professional dancer. Andrew moves so slick, quick and captivates all who watch him. Andrew sits in class and from afar it seems like he’s engaged and participating in the tasks. Yet as I step closer, I find that Mr. Andrew is drawing.

So I approach, curious, “How is that paper coming? What topic did you decide to write about?”

He says in a charming and matter of fact way,

”I just cant think of anything to write.”

So I probe for possible topics, and finally we get one. I leave him with enough information- But as soon as I turn around, I find that my lovely Mr. Andrew has, once again, started to dance and do something else.

He’s not disruptive, just dismissive in an uncanny type of way.

Does your kid do this? For children like Andrew, I usually give them one step at a time, and a time limit.

For Andrew, I might say, “I want you to list three possible topics you can come up with in the next five minutes. When I come back I will give you your next step.”

Sometimes, dancers perform better when they have one step at a time.

Multi-step directions are entirely too much for them, they get lost in the details, start to feel overwhelm and try to dance around the situation instead of asking for help.

If this is your child, give him or her the parts instead of the whole.

It will be so much more fun to do the tango with your child instead of her being off on her own, doing her own dance moves.

Happy Dancing!!!

Queenie Lindsey is an academic coach and educational consultant. She is the founder of Tandem Teaching and Distinguished Learning Group, an academic coaching firm. Follow her on Twitter.

{ 5 comments }

Melissa March 18, 2010 at 1:12 pm

Another great post with a great tip. I’ve worked with many “Mr. Andrews” in my career, and that strategy works with them every time!

And, as for the impromptu dance class at lunch . . . Those poor kids! When I remember the looks on their faces as they tried to prep me for the Kanye concert I can’t help but laugh! They’d never met someone so rhythmically-challenged!

Megan March 18, 2010 at 7:32 pm

Ooo I dance all the time. Dorky dancing and also avoidance dancing. (Melissa and I took a Tae-bo class once. If there is a video of it you would probably fall out of your chair if you saw us bouncing around with Billy Blanks).

When I started working for myself it was really hard to stay focused or figure out what to next rather than give in to overwhelm. I totally empathize with Mr. Andrew. So part of what I do now everyday is plan out my tasks for the next day. When I try to plan it out in the moment or during the day, its just too easy to have a dance party instead. Now I can wake up to my instructions. Kinda similar, and its helping.

JenO March 26, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Dolly loves to dance! At the moment Lady Gaga and reggae are big hits in our house.

Melissa March 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm

I’d LOVE to see it! She’s such a cutie. Jim is quite pleased with her music taste!

Laura April 11, 2010 at 3:15 pm

Sometimes it isn’t in supporting my son’s dreams it’s in supporting him through the hurdles…writing. It’s not his favorite thing, he doesn”t dream of being a writer or creating stories, until now. We started homeschooling recently and I had to come up with some way of supporting him in the area of “writing”, we created “1,2,3, reveal”. I asked him to find 4 objects in anywhere in the house and put them on the table. He quickly gathered a model car, a hat, some binoculars and a small toy idol. We each wrote a story with the only rule being you had to use the four objects. He quickly penned the greatest Indiana Jones story ever! When he’s ready he says “1,2,3, reveal” and we read each other’s story. It’s now his favorite “subject” at homeschool.