Celebrating dance on International Dance Day


Like the vast majority of the performing arts, dance is renowned for providing an opportunity for people to express themselves in different ways.

International Dance Day, created by the Dance Committee of the International Theatre Institute – a partner for the performing arts of UNESCO – seeks to celebrate all forms of dance and to recognise its impact on society.

Marked annually on 29 April, the birthday of the man behind modern ballet, Jean-Georges Noverre, the day helps to promote the art form in locations across the world.

It also seeks to promote the positive impacts of dance on wider society, as the ITI suggests dance can add value in numerous ways when given the right support.

Dance in the classroom can be particularly good for encouraging creativity and out-of-the-box thinking, especially for teachers that are looking to ensure that curriculum content is fun and engaging.

The use of interpretive dance in lessons, for instance, can give pupils the freedom to express ideas in ways they might not otherwise consider.

Such activities can ensure that lessons are engaging and that youngsters take on board some of the key topics and thoughts that are being discussed.

Children shouldn’t be forced to sit at desks or to stare at screens all day, which is why dance can help to stimulate their minds and encourage them to be active.

Studies even suggest that dancing can stimulate the brain as a result of the emotions and intellect involved, meaning that children benefit even more as a result.

Teachers may want to use dance to promote actions or processes, and it is a technique that can be applied in a range of subjects, from history and science to geography and languages.

How that is done is down to the individual member of teaching staff, but if there was ever a time to experiment with dance, it’s on International Dance Day.