My 3-year-old recently completed her first Tippi Toes class at the Sharonville Community Center. She absolutely loved it! She was ecstatic about wearing a pink leotard with ruffles and ballet shoes. We arrived a little early and all of the little dancers were running around the room excitedly. Promptly at 10 o’clock, the instructor began class by taking roll and was eager to learn all of their names. The instructor was very warm and friendly but also had control over the class. She set a precedent by assigning each dancer their own spot on the dance floor marked by a piece of tape. If one of the little dancers left their spot she gently reminded them to go back to their home base. The class was upbeat and fast paced, so that also kept the dancers on track. All of the songs were fun and the dance moves were easy to follow.
The class began with stretches. The dancers played their air guitar and then moved into alligator legs to stretch their inner thighs. They reached up and down and then side to side as well shrugged their shoulders. A fun song helped get their little bodies ready to move! Analogies were used throughout the class to help the dancers learn basic ballet, tap, and jazz moves in a way they could understand. An example of this is comparing first position to pizza feet. Towards the end of the class they learned how to curtsy, which was a fun connection to the book Angelina Ballerina, which my daughter and I read. She now has to demonstrate how to curtsy every time we read the book. Additionally, Tippi Toes helps the dancers to work on their balance and coordination. During one song they had to balance bean bags on their head and walk across the room and during another song they walked on a rectangular styrofoam mat. There were lots of opportunities for the dancers to practice their listening skills in fun ways.
Another component of Tippi Toes is promoting positive self esteem. Some of the songs had lyrics that illustrate this idea, and the instructor was complimentary of the dancers throughout the class. After the goodbye song, the dancers were rewarded with glitter, stickers, and a stamp for following directions. My daughter and all of the other dancers had a great time and it was evident as everyone left happy! The best part was that they were having fun while at the same time learning about dance and working on their listening skills!
Tippi Toes has franchises throughout many United States cities, including Cincinnati, where there are various host locations. Tippi Toes has classes for 18-month-olds where a caregiver can attend with their child as well Baby Ballet, Ballet, Tap, and Jazz for 3 – 7-year-olds, and even tasteful Hip Hop and Jazz! Tippi Toes has in class performances as well a Spring recital outside of class. There is also an emphasis on giving back to the community and performing in places like retirement homes. To learn more about Tippi Toes check out tippitoesdance.com/cincinnati or email firstname.lastname@example.org