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5 ways to link The Olympics with Dance

So the sun is shining and summer is approaching fast.  The Olympics are around the corner and to celebrate, I’ve listed 5 different ways you can incorporate The Olympics into your dance teaching this term.

1. Host a Samba Party

In my blog post a few weeks ago I uploaded a video of Samba dancing.  You could teach this to your class and then use the actions to create a samba party – could the children have whistles and streamers?

Or have a look at the Rio carnivals online.  Create a procession with your class in a big follow my leader.

2.  Capoeira

Capoeira is a Brazilian Martial Art usually done in pairs with NO CONTACT which makes it ideal for primary school dance.  Have a look on youtube for some clips of the basic Capoeira moves – the Jinja is a side step and is used as the basis for everything else.  Could the children create attacking and blocking moves that link into the Jinga?  How might they work as a duet?

3.  Athletics

Take in some photos of athletes competing in a range of different Olympic events and use these as a starting point for creating movement.  The children could create still images of the photographs and then bring them to life. How could they create some of the events with a partner?  For example, one child could be the hurdle and their partner the athlete leaping over.

Some of the group could be the spectators – what kind of movements could they do?  Try out a Mexican Wave!

4.  Opening Ceremony for your sports day

Open your sports day with a whole school performance!  You could use some of the ideas already listed above, or create a new dance and teach it to the whole class.  The choreography could include lots of happy celebratory moves such as jumps, wiggles, skips, leaps – ask the children for ideas and add them in.

Or you could use the idea of a torch relay or flag procession within your opening ceremony.

5.   Olympics symbols

The Olympic rings are a good starting point for creating shapes and children could create the 5 rings as a class linking them together.  The Olympics also has a motto: Faster, Higher, Stronger.  How could this be expressed through different movements?  The children (and especially boys) love the element of competition – ask them who can be the Fastest, Highest and Strongest!  Use their ideas to create a short dance phrase (sequence of movement).

I hope these ideas help and I’ve love to know which ones you try out with your class.

Olympics Dance Class in a Box


Pushed for time? Check out our pre-made resources specifically designed for primary school teachers – choose from a range of videos and lesson plans.  Click here to view.

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