Today’s Topic: Dance Moms: Winter Break With Your Dancer
Hi everyone. I’m Kayla with complete performance coaching. My specialty is working with dancers and cheerleaders. In my first live video, I talked about the lens of a dancer and some of the thoughts and feelings that are running through a dancer’s mind. My second video was strictly tailored to dance moms. It was an open letter stating – if a dancer could say anything to their dance mom, what would they say? I collaborated with my mom and my grandma who are dance moms and came up with this list of some things that a dancer may want to tell their mom.
Today we’re going to talk about winter break with your dancer. The reason why we’re talking about this is because it’s a phenomenal opportunity. You’re with your a dancer for about two weeks or so. They don’t have school, so it’s a really great opportunity to gain insight into their mind.
I feel like the past two lives I did were about things that a dancer might say, but they’re not sharing it yet, so this is your opportunity. I’m going to share certain activities that I love to do with my mom over the break or whenever I get free time. It’s time that really allows her to get a glimpse into my mind and some of the things that I’m thinking about that may stress me out or anything dance related. It’s a nice place for us to bond.
I’m also doing this live topic because I’m a high school therapist at a high school in the bay area and I’ve been talking with a lot of the teens lately about a winter break. Some of the things that are on their mind and a lot of them are saying that they’re stressed about are finals, obviously and the other thing they’re talking about is how they don’t have any plans for the winter break. They’re not really excited about anything. They’re isolating themselves. When I ask them if they’re planning on talking to their parents about any of the things that they’re stressed about, a lot of them say no.
I am going to share a list of activities and things that you can do with your dancer over the winter break that can allow you to bond and really get a glimpse into their mind. I’ve done all these with my mom and love all of them. Hopefully you can try them and tell me what you think.
1. Show Off Your Work
The first one, I used to do this all this time, not even just for winter break, but with my mom, I used to work really hard. We had a dance studio in our garage and I used to dance downstairs in the garage and I would tell my mom, “Meet me in the garage at this time. I want to show you this dance that I’m working on.” That would be a really great activity for you to do together. Dance moms, you can watch your dancer perform a trick that she’s working on. I know that turns were always a struggle for me. My mom used to always watch anything. I used to just love showing off for my her. So that’ll be a really great opportunity for you to watch your dancer dance and provide positive feedback and positive affirmations and really be that positive voice for them because sometimes the dancers may not be doing that for themselves.
Perform with Friends
Another spin on it is you can tell your dancer to invite their dance friends over and they can put on a performance for all the dance moms, or just you dance mom, and you can make it a very fun thing. Maybe turn it into to a sleepover. There’s a lot of wiggle room to do with that activity. Also, it’s really important to be super positive about it so that way your dancer knows that you’re supportive of him or her.
2. Motivational Activity
The next activity you can do is a motivational activity. I like to do this with athletes, but my mom and I did it one time. My mom bought me colorful index cards in neon colors, very bright and happy. We wrote down motivational words. This can be anything, any keywords. We had this big stack of them, You can use glitteer or whatever you want, just something positive that goes on the card so your dancer can put it in their dance bag or you can put it next to your bed and kind of flip through them whenever you’re feeling stressed out or overwhelmed. It’s nice because you can link back to the colorful cards to the activity that you did with your mom and it’s just a nice way to keep you grounded and immediately getting flooded with positive motivational words.
3. Write Letters
The next activity you can do is write each other a letter. Dancers and dance moms you can switch and write each other letters. I know the last time I spoke I talked about what a dancer would say if they could say anything to their mom. It was this open letter. You can actually put that into practice for the winter break. You can even tell you the answer, “Let’s open it on a certain day for the holidays,” and dance moms, do write a letter to your dancer and vice versa and you can open it or exchange it right then and there or you can wait for a special day to open it. It’s super fun and it’s a nice self-care time and a way for you to be expressive.
The next thing, this is my favorite, so for Christmas actually my mom got me this book and it’s called Dance First, Think Later. It’s this yellow book and it has a ton of poems and quotes. There are some specifically tailored toward dancers, but a lot of it is super general.
4. Reading (out loud)
We played this game, especially in the summertime. Wherever we were, we would flip through the pages. I’d look away and stop my finger. I would read that quote out loud to her and I would tell her what the quote meant for me or what the quote reminded me of and she would do the same. It was a nice way for her to get a glimpse into my mind and I got a glimpse in her mind and it was just such a beautiful experience.
The very last thing is to schedule self-care bonding time with your team because you just never know if they may need it. A lot of these teens that I’m counseling right now, a lot of them need that self-care time. They need things to do. So we’re coming up with a self care-plan for them over the break. A lot of their parents don’t really know what’s going on with them, so it will be great, dance moms, if you could schedule something super fun – either some of the things that I like to do or something on your list you like, or you can bake holiday cookies.
If you’re in the bay area, you can go to Christmas in the park. It’s just nice. You get to see all the Christmas trees and the lights, you get fresh air and hot chocolate. Another thing you can do is make your own hot chocolate at home and watch a holiday movie. You can go sledding with your dancer. They have a nice slope out here.
You can also motivate your dancer to have a sleepover with all their friends. You can plan something fun for new years eve and you can go black Friday shopping. There’s a lot of different things you can do and it’s really, really important. A lot of the teens that I’m meeting with are planning on isolating themselves over winter break. You never know when your kid is going to need that extra push and that extra nudge to just get out there and do something fun rather than isolate at home in their room.
These are a lot of the fun things you can do over the winter break to really bond with your dancer Once again, the book I mentioned earlier is called Dance First, Think Later. I love the title too. So those are all the things. Thank you so much for listening and tuning in. If you want to book a session with me, click here. I look forward to seeing you next month. Bye.