Discipline: Dance, Interdisciplinary, Music, Writing
Tara Crouse has worked as dance teacher and choreographer for over 16 years in the private sector and has over 30 years of training in a variety of dance and movement forms including ballet, jazz, contemporary, creative, acrobatics and yoga. More recently as a dance educator in two school residences, Tara was able to "make visible" the value of learning in and through the art of dance in two interdisciplinary projects which taught dance as its own subject as well as an enhancer of science. The experiences were acknowledged as extremely positive and educational to students, teachers, administration and parents.
My Kindergarten class thoroughly enjoyed the dance project and lessons. It was a great, enriching experience. I enjoyed Tara's professionalism, creativity, organization and implementation of this project. She is an excellent role model for dance. Agnes Oosterhof, Kindergarten Teacher
The skills and learning that my students experienced surpassed my expectations. I witnessed risk-taking, problem-solving, critical-thinking, creativity, collaboration, self-awareness and increased confidence in abilities. Without even knowing it, my students were exposed to crucial skills that will support them as they venture out into the real world. All of my students challenged themselves to go beyond their comfort zones and expressed themselves and demonstrated their knowledge in different and amazing ways. In their reflection, they all wrote about what a wonderfully amazing teacher Mrs. Crouse is and they enjoyed themselves immensely throughout the project. We all feel so privileged to have had the opportunity to work with Tara! Tara is a master teacher. She is one of the hardest-working people I know. Super keen, super talented, passionate about the arts and extremely knowledgeable about her subject matter. Deb Secco, Grade 3 Teacher
The performance was profound. I was deeply moved by the experience. To see young girls of 8-9 dance interpretively with joy was amazing. Having the rest of Junior school girls come and see the extravaganza was so great. On many levels, the Space Extravaganza exemplified what can be done in school to make learning fun and challenging and a unique growth experience for children. If this could be incorporated somehow into the curriculum for all grades, particularly junior school, this would be a wonderful opportunity for the girls to learn, whatever topic. Space is pretty grand as far as subject matter goes, but there are numerous ways dance can be used as a learning tool for science. How fun for children to feel science! Parent Survey
In this six lesson workshop students learn about communicating through dance with mime and movement. The Sleeping Beauty Prologue provides an ideal platform for learning about not only ballet and dance, but also mime. Students will explore the relationship between movement, music, and characterisation when they participate in learning and presenting this scene. It is suitable for both boys and girls because of the variety of male and female as well as good and evil parts in this extract. The workshop allows students to understand elements of classic fairy tales like Sleeping Beauty through movement, music and mime and is accessible to beginner dancers.
In this short workshop of 4 - 6 lessons students are introduced to creative dance movements and learn how to apply language of dance symbols in their own movement creations. Through basic dance movements students will be learning about the causes of seasons, time, as well as day and night. Each class, through various movement explorations, music, and poetry students will experience and reinforce their understanding about the four seasons and their characteristics. This workshop allows participants to have multiple intelligence learning experiences which not only engages more students in their learning but is also inclusive.
In a 15 week workshop (2 - 3 classes per week) students will learn, create, and perform a variety of dance styles including creative dance, jazz dance, and hip hop. Students will develop foundational movements skills and be introduced to the creative process. Along with learning about dance as its own subject and discipline, the students will also be supporting and enhancing their learning about the Grade 3 Science unit through this multi-intelligence approach. Students become actively engaged in learning and demonstrating their knowledge about the Phases of Moon, The Great Bear Constellation, and our Solar System.