Everybody dance

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By Jane Bowerart, drama, dance and literacy advisor

Explore the exciting world of dance with this Key Stage 1 activity ideas.

Girl dancing

The topic of dance doesn’t need to be confined to PE lessons, but can provide a gateway to some inspiring learning in many subjects – from science, to history and even numeracy. This topic provides engaging activity ideas and resources for taking a cross-curricular approach to this subject.


Key Stage 1

1. Exercise plan, 2.Telling a story, 3. Keeping count, 4. Tudor dances, 5.Planning a festival, 6. World dance, 7. Science steps, 8. Clap the rhythm

Key Stage 2

1. Movement in art, 2. The ultimate dance shoe

1. Exercise plan

Ask the children to imagine that they are doctors responsible for the wellbeing of the dancers on Strictly Come Dancing. They must make sure that the dancers look after their bodies. How should they prepare their bodies for dancing? Introduce categories such as suppleness, stamina and strength. Ensure that the children understand what each of these mean and then discuss how each one could be addressed, for example, by stretching, sustained exercise and lifting gradually increasing weights. Focus on different parts of the body and share and try out exercise ideas. The Activity sheet , ‘Dancer’s exercise plan’ can be used to record ideas in writing or drawings.

Different groups or pairs of children could be assigned different responsibilities – a suppleness exercise for arms, a stamina exercise for legs, and so on. The groups should introduce, explain and teach their exercises to the rest of the class.

The class can build their chosen warm-up routine to start their own PE or dance sessions.

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