Minute Masterclass Episode 100

Welcome to your one-minute masterclass. I’m Andrea Trench, founder of DiscoverDance and creator of the Foundations Course for Early Childhood Dance Educators. Today we are finishing our Power of Props series with prop management. The first step in prop management is keeping props close, but out of sight. We don’t want our students becoming distracted by having props out in the open, so keeping them in bins or bags until it’s time to use them will help tame that curiosity and off-task behavior. Having them close by will help you grab them when needed and keep the flow of the class moving smoothly. 

When introducing new props, allow students to explore using their own creativity first, then teach them how you expect them to use the prop. For example, when introducing a step stool into your obstacle course for the first time, begin in a seated circle. Have each dancer show you how they would use the step stool. Perhaps some leap over it, or sit on it, or lay on their belly and fly like a superhero on it. This opportunity for divergent thinking encourages creativity as well as community bonding. By seeing there are multiple ways to use the step stool, we are getting our youngest dancers to think critically and creatively, which sets the foundation for their artistry. 

When cleaning up props, include the dancers. Give each of them one prop from the obstacle course to clean up or have them balance their scarves on their head and place them back in the bin. Giving them a job during transitions keeps them engaged and focused, while helping with the class flow. For more information, visit DiscoverDance.com.

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