Standard 1: Lessons & Assessments

By |2018-08-30T00:03:10-07:00August 18th, 2014|

Each month I will be highlighting the anchor standards for Dance, and today starts the first of an 11-part series that will breakdown and analyze each standard, and provide lesson seed, samples, lessons and assessments.  Let’s take a look at the first anchor standard:  Standard_1

Standard 1: Lessons & AssessmentsScreen Shot 2014-08-13 at 12.57.31 PMLessons & Assessments, Education ClosetLessons & Assessments, Education ClosetSo, for anchor standard 1 we are focusing on the artistic process of creating and the component of exploring.  The enduring understanding is analyzing what sources of inspiration choreographers use to generate work.  Although the anchor standard does not change as the grade level progresses, the expectations continue to advance.  This is a great standard to integrate into other core standards:

Lesson Seeds

Math: Grade 1

Lessons & Assessments, Education Closet

Have students generate movement based on addition and subtraction.  Use bodies as numbers and offer students a visual of adding, subtracting, taking from, putting together, and comparing.

English Language Arts: Grade 4

Lessons & Assessments, Education Closet

Have students use movement to represent various themes presented in their novels.  This will assess students recognition of themes and well as assessing their ability to generate movement that resembles the themes.

Next Generation Science: Grade 6-8

Lessons & Assessments, Education Closet

Movement is an engaging way to assess the many chemical reactions in science studies.  Have students generate movement based on the chemical reaction.  Have them create costumes (they can be as simple as symbols pinned to their clothing) to help the audience recognize the scientific matter being represented.

Lesson Plan

Dance: Grade 9-12

Title: Compositional Prop Study
Materials: various items (brush, hanger, remote control, balloons, broom, computer cord, etc.)

Note: Remember that a true prop study will explore how the prop can move alone and the relationship between the dancer and the prop.  The prop must be seen as an additional dancer in the piece, not just an inanimate object, so it is important to involve the prop in the design of the composition.

Activity: place all of the props in the center of the room, give students about 2 minutes (per prop) to explore movement with the various props.  After they have had the chance to move with multiple props, have them choose one prop to be the foundation of their prop study.

Write: have student brainstorm their prop study by designing a mind map.  Place the item in the middle of the map and branch words that come to mind when thinking about their specific prop.

Compose: Use the map to generate phrases of movement for each word associated with the prop.  Be sure to explore the elements of movement (Body, Energy, Space, and Time).  Combine the phrases utilizing transitions to make a complete prop composition.

Perform:  Perform the prop pieces for the class.  Have the audience critique using A-R and T (Affirmation, Reflection, Translation) of the ARTISTIC Critique.  Have audience members title the piece based on their critiques.

Standard 1 is essentially the easiest standard to integrate into all subjects, because it is the foundation of generating movement, and movement can come from ANYWHERE!!!  Try to use one of your core lessons as an inspiration for movement within your class!

Piquès & Pirouettès

Next Week: Teacher Talk

New Home, New Family: Being the new teacher on campus…

It’s been about 12 years since I walked onto a campus as a new teacher, but I am here at the beginning again.  Join me as I share my journey of a new school in a new state…a new home, a new family!




  1. […] series on the national standards.  See all 11 samples here:Unpacking the National Dance Standards Anchor Standard 1Anchor Standard 2 Anchor Standard 3 Anchor Standard 4 Anchor Standard 5 Anchor Standard 6 Anchor […]

  2. […] #9 Compositional Prop Study This is such an enjoyable lesson with any age group.  It involves the use of various items that are not traditionally used in dance and that is what makes it so much fun.  This lesson can be used to introduce compositional structures, defeat choreographer’s block, and/or explore ways to introduce inanimate objects into movement.  Download the PDF here: Compositional Prop Study Lesson Plan  Review the following article for resources and handouts: Compositional Prop Study […]

  3. […] 1 In August, I introduced Standard 1: Generalize and conceptualize artistic ideas and work, (Full Article) and presented the following […]

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