Let little feet lead the way

Quesnel's GPCD offering summer programs specifically for young dancers.

Young children learn well with the use of dance.

Young children learn well with the use of dance.

Gold Pan City Dance studio has an exciting lineup of summer dance programs in their new studio on Anderson Drive. Instructors Sherry Gosselin, who has been working in the field of early childhood education, specifically in the area of dances and its importance to physical, cognitive and emotional development of children, and Lisa Sars, who has extensive experience in Yoga and dance,  along with GPCD director Sandy Herman, who has 20 years experience teaching various dance forms and is a certified member of the Canadian Dance Teachers Association (tap division), are offering a variety of programs designed to appeal to the imagination and creativity of each child.

“These programs give children a chance to experience a wide range of arts-based activities,” Herman said.

“It’s a great introduction to more structured dance techniques.”

Beginning with Gosselin’s All of Me program for 4 – 6 year olds, running Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 1 – 3 p.m., starting July 3, which focuses on the child as a whole. The first part of the class is filled with literature-based activities to exercise their creative abilities and logical thinking skills. Students will learn a different story from various children’s authors, followed by a hands-on art project. The second part of the class explores music, develops physical skills, channels energy, stimulates imagination and promotes creativity all through creative dance.

For the students 7 – 9 years old, Gosselin brings Music and Movement where props, games, repetition of movement, special awareness, timing and self expression are all used to explore movement in a fun and creative class. These classes also run Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 3:15 – 4:15 p.m., starting July 3.

Sars brings her Yoga skills to classes for children between the ages of 3 and 9 years. The first class, Yoga – Dance, explores, in a playful manner, Yoga as a means to relate to the natural world around us. Designed for students 7 – 9 years,  class activities demonstrate the benefits to all aspects of movement through Yoga, as well as teaching them to draw on the wisdom of their own bodies and to accept themselves just as they are. The class also gives children time to create their own poses, dance the postures through space, play a variety of group games and create art inspired by their experiences of the poses. The second part of the program is interpretive dance, which, based upon a series of developmental movement patterns, the children learn how to dance based on their body’s abilities and which helps them build a solid foundation in understanding the many elements involved in the world of dance. A large portion of class time is devoted to the creative aspects of dance, where the children are given freedom to create movement, vocabulary, improvise and play together in group formations. This class runs Monday – Friday, 1 – 3 p.m., Aug. 6 – 10.

Sars is also offering Butterfly Feet for children 3 – 4 years and 5 – 6 years. Here the worlds of Yoga and dance come together in a creative and playful way.

The class is really about having fun and enjoying each moment as it arises.

It’s also a great way to introduce young children to learning to listen to the teacher and then try it out for themselves. Classes run Monday – Friday, Aug. 6 – 10.

Finally, GPCD director Sandy Herman is running an introduction to tap dance class focusing on learning single tap steps, then incorporating the steps into a series of combinations.

This course allows the student to see if they want to pursue this energetic and enjoyable dance form in the fall.

There are some used tap shoes students can borrow on a first come first serve basis.

Classes run Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 3:15 – 4:15 p.m., June 19 – 21 and June 26 – 28.

To register for these classes, open to boys and girls, drop by the Gold Pan City Dance studio, 352 Anderson Dr., Monday, Wednesday or Thursday, 2 – 6 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., before June 9.