This project involves investigating the value of dance within a student’s life. The research has included a variety of facets of dance - how it is related to brain/neuroscience research and motor skills; how it is fun and an opportunity to learn in a different way; and how it enhances academics, mental stability, and social interactions. The bulk of the study included examining past and current national studies that investigated the effects of dance education within the K-12 school setting. Also included were two on-site visits pertinent to the study: one was a visit to a Philadelphia dance classroom, in which students participated in end-of semester projects; the other was an interview with the founding director of the National Dance Education Organization, who shed light on the scope of dance education research that addresses student achievement. The project culminated in a research paper connecting brain/neuroscience research to dance education and its effects on the K-12 student population, with particular attention to students-at-risk. The project has also laid a foundation for the future exploration of on-site dance curricula and practice in Philadelphia and/or New York K-12 public schools in order to observe how students express themselves and develop the artistry of dance while connecting to their overall education.
Jean-Baptiste, Kelsey, "All They Want to Do is Dance: A Study of Dance Education in K-12 Public Schools" (2016). Dance Summer Fellows. Paper 1.