By Jennifer Gilewski
Communities in Schools (CIS) recently posted a project on power2give.org, and thanks to individuals giving a total of $1,344 through the site, 60 CIS students at three elementary schools have been given the “Chance to Dance”.
The “Dancing for Diversity” program, a partnership with the Latin American Women’s Association, encourages cultural and ethnic understanding among third, fourth and fifth grade students through Latino dance lessons. The instructor also teaches the students about the different cultural influences that make up Latin American culture.
The program is underway with students learning the choreography to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” as well as basic Salsa dance steps for their Salsa performance. By using a familiar dance such as “Thriller”, the instructor is able to incorporate Salsa, Reggaeton, Flamenco and other Latin dance steps without the students knowing it. This makes learning the steps easier for the children because they do not focus solely on the dance, but more on having fun.
After completing the lessons, the three schools will compete in a final dance competition.
“The students are working extremely hard and have come together as a group quickly, understanding that the success of this performance will depend on all of them working well together and doing their best to really give it their all,” said a CIS coordinator.