Technology: TED-Ed

Turn videos into interactive lessons.

Free online at ed.ted.com

Need to reenergize your interdisciplinary lesson plans? Try TED-Ed, an online education platform that allows you to create interactive lessons. Select a video (either from the site, a TED Talk or YouTube), and use the editor feature to begin building your lesson. You can include multiple-choice and open-answer quiz questions, discussion prompts and a “dig deeper” section with additional resources for students to explore.

If you need inspiration to get you started, TED-Ed also allows users to customize existing lessons. Some favorites include:

“The Physics of the ‘Hardest Move’ in Ballet,” which breaks down the science behind the famous fouetté section in Swan Lake

“The Origins of Ballet,” an animated video that takes you back to the birth of ballet in Italian courts

“A Tap Dancer’s Craft,” a brief history of tap dance and its ever-evolving role in the world

Once your lesson plan is complete, you’ll receive a unique URL to share it with your students (they’ll need their own TED-Ed accounts to participate). You can monitor the progress of your class and view responses as students submit work. 

Don't miss a single issue of Dance Teacher.

Teaching Tips
A 2019 Dancewave training. Photo by Effy Grey, courtesy Dancewave

By now, most dance educators hopefully understand that they have a responsibility to address racism in the studio. But knowing that you need to be actively cultivating racial equity isn't the same thing as knowing how to do so.

Of course, there's no easy answer, and no perfect approach. As social justice advocate David King emphasized at a recent interactive webinar, "Cultivating Racial Equity in the Classroom," this work is never-ending. The event, hosted by Dancewave (which just launched a new racial-equity curriculum) was a good starting point, though, and offered some helpful takeaways for dance educators committed to racial justice.

Keep reading... Show less
Higher Ed
The author, Robyn Watson. Photo courtesy Watson

Recently, I posted a thread of tweets elucidating the lack of respect for tap dance in college dance programs, and arguing that it should be a requirement for dance majors.

According to onstageblog.com, out of the 30 top-ranked college dance programs in the U.S., tap dance is offered at 19 of them, but only one school requires majors to take more than a beginner course—Oklahoma City University. Many prestigious dance programs, like the ones at NYU Tisch School of the Arts and SUNY Purchase, don't offer a single course in tap dance.

Keep reading... Show less
Teaching Tips
Getty Images

After months of lockdowns and virtual learning, many studios across the country are opening their doors and returning to in-person classes. Teachers and students alike have likely been chomping at the bit in anticipation of the return of dance-class normalcy that doesn't require a reliable internet connection or converting your living room into a dance space.

But along with the back-to-school excitement, dancers might be feeling rusty from being away from the studio for so long. A loss of flexibility, strength and stamina is to be expected, not to mention emotional fatigue from all of the uncertainty and reacclimating to social activities.

So as much as everyone wants to get back to normal—teachers and studio owners included—erring on the side of caution with your dancers' training will be the most beneficial approach in the long run.

Keep reading... Show less

Get Dance Business Weekly in your inbox

Sign Up Used in accordance with our Privacy Policy.