By Josia Ruby Kushner, Student Reporter
Photography by Sonya Sio Artis
The sounds of music and dancing filled the halls at Seth Boyden Demonstration School, Thursday, January 17th. That is because the fifth-graders were performing for Dancing Classrooms, concluding their three-month workshop, teaching them formal dance.
Dancing Classrooms is a program by NJPAC teaching young people the art of ballroom dance. Every year, the fifth-graders at Seth Boyden take part. It starts in October when they learn the basics, and ends in January when they perform. They all worked very hard to put together a wonderful show with great dances, such as the Tango, Swing, Rumba, and Foxtrot, among others.
The experience, in my opinion, was really fun. Some of the kids would have rather been playing video games, but we all mainly had fun. It was exciting to learn all of these dances, and I enjoyed how proper and respectful it taught everyone to be. There were two teachers, Ms. Danielle and Mr. Justin. I had Ms. Danielle, and she was an amazing teacher. She corrected me and my class when we got something wrong. I had Mr. Justin on Partner Day, and he is also a really good teacher. It seems to me that they both enjoy dance.
The fifth graders also took part in an etiquette dinner. Before the dinner, they tried as hard as they could to learn proper ways to eat, such as the appropriate use for utensils, how to ask for more water, and the right way to enter the table, to name a few behaviors. The dinner took place right before the dance where the students showed off their newly-learned skills, along with the aid of etiquette teacher Ms. Erica from the New School of Etiquette, the principal, assistant principal, and some parents.
The night of the performance all the students were nervous. When the first class came down the aisle, everyone started to clap. At that point, the nerves went away (for most). Then the dancing began. The fifth-graders did an amazing job, and everyone had a great time. After all the dances, parents, siblings, grandparents and friends were allowed to come up and learn the Merengue. It was cool – and a little funny – watching everyone dance on the stage. And I mean everyone.
All in all, Dancing Classrooms was a fun night – and an rewarding experience. I really enjoyed it.
Photography: Sonya Sio Artis