Keeping your child active – both physically and mentally – is one of the most important jobs that a parent has. Teaching your kids some silly dance moves will get their bodies moving while they learn key principles of music, including rhythm, tempo, and more. So turn on some music and try out these fun and silly dance moves for kids!
Most children love animals! For this activity, turn on an upbeat song and call out the name of an animal. Encourage your child to dance however they think that animal would dance. Call out a new animal every 15 to 30 seconds, or whenever you sense that your child is getting bored with the current animal. Give them the chance to take the lead sometimes and call out animals for you to mimic. Want to have even more fun? Let your child “sing” along to the music as each of the animals!
Exaggerated, emotive movements are fun to do and amusing to watch. Turn on a slower song (some classical music would be perfect) and encourage your child to move as slowly as possible. Try out classic dance moves, such as twisting, disco dancing, or spinning. It’s also fun to incorporate daily activities like pretending you’re walking, running, hula hooping, or making breakfast. This is a great exercise for your child’s balance and overall motor skills!
A classic children’s game that your kids are sure to love is freeze dancing. Turn on some music and let your child dance however they want – but periodically pause the music. Whenever the music stops, your child must instantly stop whatever they are doing and hold the pose until the music starts again. You can make this game more fun by watching your child closely and making sure you pause at a funny moment, like when they are balancing on one leg, spinning, or squatting.
Repeating Dance Pattern
Similar to the electronic Simon game or Bop It, this game is all about patterns and repetition. Start the music and teach your child one simple dance pattern, one step at a time. For example, start by raising one arm. After you demonstrate the move, your child should repeat it. Then raise your arm again, just as you did the first time, and add a new move like jumping off the ground two times. Once your child repeats the string of moves, continue to add a new move and watch the dance pattern grow longer and longer. In addition to the physical and musical benefits to this game, it’s a great way to work on memory skills!
Classic Dance Moves
While they may seem old-fashioned and cheesy to an adult, classic dance moves that everyone knows are new and fun for a child. Try out classic moves of days-gone-by like moonwalking, the Charleston, robot dancing, the twist, raising the roof, the macarena, the running man, and the sprinkler. Not only will your child have a fun time, they will also get a lesson in pop culture!
Dances from Around the World
Learn about the culture and history of other countries around the world by trying out their dance moves. After watching examples on YouTube, you can try new moves from salsa dance, Bollywood dance, or Kozachok (the Russian dance where the dancers squat and kick their legs up). Be sure to turn on music from the country your dance comes from to expose your child to the different sounds heard in music from around the world.
Even the most creative people run out of ideas sometimes. When you can’t possibly think of another dance move, sometimes it’s fun to turn to someone else for some inspiration. Find an appropriate music video on YouTube and have your child try to follow along with the dancers. This activity works best if your child has never seen the video before, so that they will be completely surprised by every new move. This will work your child’s processing skills, as he or she must quickly determine what the dancers are doing and figure out how to perform the move with their own body, all before the dancers move on to the next step.
Did you enjoy trying these silly dance moves for kids and want to find other ways to support your child’s artistic development? One way to keep your child interested in the arts is to sign them up for private lessons. No matter if you choose private lessons for dance, music, or visual art, you will be helping your child grow artistically while learning skills. And who knows – maybe this interest will grow into a career path or incredible talent for your child!
Photo by iaincfw