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End of Year Round-Up

Year Round Up - A New Start

It’s been a wonderful first year back at Song and Dance Studios.

As we started to repaint the dancefloors, it led us to talk about all the changes of the last year, from pods of six to two metres to groups of fourteen kids and one teacher.

Every time more repainting of the floors. We even painted the blue crosses in the yard for outdoor classes.

Term 1 - First Steps

Senior dancers onstage at PERFORM

We started with Outdoor classes last September, it was a couple of weeks before we were finally allowed to move back indoors, back into the Studios. So much excitement, so much cleaning and preparation.

We remember very clearly the deluge emotions when we were able to have people back in the building for the first time, a mixture of excitement, joy and honestly, a lot of trepidation. Masks and hand sanitiser as far as the eye could see.

But it was great to be back doing what we love.

Our senior dance class prepared two routines for the Perform conference in The R.D.S in November – our first time on a stage since the beginning of the pandemic! The day at the R.D.S. was a fantastic success.

Term 2 - Carols and Concerts

On 5th December, our wonderful Canbelto Women’s Choir were joined by Song and Dance Senior Choir for the annual lighting of the Christmas tree on the village green in Baldoyle. We preceded this earlier in the day with a visit to St. Patrick’s Nursing Home on Dublin Street to serenade the residents with an hour of Christmas songs and carols.

On the second Saturday of December we held a Christmas Jumper Day in aid of Focus Ireland. Through the amazing generosity of Song and Dance Kids and their families we raised €1418 for this fantastic charity.

The Sunday before Christmas brought Lucy’s Christmas show, by now a Song and Dance tradition. Two packed houses, albeit restricted numbers as per regulations, delighted to be out among other people.

Term 3 - A Very Happy New Year

In January, it became clear that we could do an end of year show in May, the excitement was amazing.

In March, thanks to an auntie of two of the Song and Dance kids, we were treated to free tickets to the musical, Bedknobs and Broomsticks at The Gaiety Theatre. Over two hundred of us attended and a wonderful time was had by all.

In April, on behalf of Song and Dance, we brought a donation of food and personal hygiene products to the local Ukrainian Aid charity.

Easter holidays were used to develop and rehearse two original musicals and two original plays for our two senior drama/ musical theatre classes.

On the May Bank Holiday Monday, we hosted Sailing the High C’s, Lucy’s opera show with her friend and mentor International soprano, Kathryn Smith.

At the start of May, we answered the call of the Baldoyle Tidy Towns committee and took the Song and Dance van to Roundwood Co. Wicklow to collect carved totem poles for the community garden and nature trail in Seagrange Park. Thanks Google Maps for a wonderful adventure!

Showtime 2022

The last week of week of May was entirely given over to SONG AND DANCE KIDS with a full week of performances. Each class performed two nights in our theatre, The Playhouse @SongandDance. The energy and sense of happiness in the building was off the charts!

Our final event was ‘Maytime Melodies’ – a joint concert by our adult choirs, Canbelto Women’s Choir and The Acapella Fellas in aid of The Alzeheimers Society of Ireland. Once again, we paid a visit to St Patrick’s Nursing Home beforehand to sing for the residents, who were delighted to welcome us in our finery and particularly pleased to see The Fellas in their Tuxedos.

Children performing the end of year show

As for the event itself, demand for tickets was so great that we had to put on a second show and the total raised for the charity was over €4,000.

A great end to another great year in Song and Dance.

We’re delighted to be back, but we’re not resting on our laurels. Preparations are well underway for summer camps – see you there!

Carol and Jimmy x

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6 Top Tips For Helping Your Child Start at Song and Dance

6 Top Tips For Helping Your Child Start at Song and Dance

Let's Help Your Child Start Start their First Class!

We’ve all been there: You’ve signed up to a new class. You’ve been dying to give it a go for ages.  Maybe you’ve been watching YouTube videos of your new activity at home, giving it welly in your bedroom. You get to the door on your first day, and… suddenly, you can’t go in. Your knees are locked, your stomach is doing flips, and you feel all shy.

Whether you’re 4 or 94, first-day nerves are completely natural – especially in the current environment. Young children in 2021 have spent a huge portion of their lives at home, often with only their immediate family, so we understand that starting a new activity might be an intimidating experience.

 

We're Here to Help

At Song and Dance, we take every step we can to make sure every Song and Dance kid has a brilliant experience every time they walk through our gates. We’ve got 25 years of experience in helping new students settle in, and we’ve got several early childhood educators on our team who take great care of even the most nervous new recruits.

But, first impressions count, and if you want to help your child start off on the best foot, it really helps if you do as much groundwork as you can to help the first day go smoothly. Here’s our top tips on ensuring a great first day!

helping your child start - you set the tone

You set the tone – It may not seem like it sometimes, but your child is your biggest fan, and they hang on every word you say! If you’re worried about how they’re going to settle in, they’ll be worried. So be confident and excited about how brilliant it’s going to be!

helping your child start - be prepared

Be prepared – It can really help some children to familiarise themselves with a new environment before they start. You could walk past our studios in advance and have a look in (or arrange a short visit with us in advance). You can also check out our Facebook or Instagram with your child to see pictures and videos of our studios and team.

helping your child start - start together

Start with a pal or sibling – if you know your child is nervous to branch out on their own, why not get one of their friends or siblings to start with them? This method never fails!

helping your child start -help us help you

Let us know if your child finds it hard to settle – we’re always happy to have any information which will help us help your child. Give us a call in advance or let us know at drop-off.

helping your child start - its not a competition

It’s not a competition – talk to your child about being patient with themselves. It takes everyone a while to pick up new skills. All we’ll ever ask of anyone is to try their best, and we understand that for some children, their ‘best’ is just walking through the door in the first place!

helping your child start - keep time keep calm

Give yourself enough time to get there for the first few classes – being in a rush to get here causes unnecessary stress for everyone, and your child could feel panicked before they even get to the gate.

And if it doesn’t go so well? Be patient, and keep trying. Often, it takes children several classes or even a full term to settle into a new environment. The important thing is to give them a chance to do so at their own pace, and not to take the decision out of their hands after one class. Some of our biggest success stories hid under tables on their first day!

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