Musicality For Beginner Kids Dance Classes

How to give your child an understanding of music and rhythm for kids dance lessons

Musicality For Beginner Kids Dance Classes

When children are taking their first kids dance classes within a children’s dance academy one of the main fundamentals that they will need in order to be successful in kids dance is a good understanding of musicality and rhythm. In this article we will look at some basic music theory which will help you as a parent to give your child an understanding of music and its relationship to dance which will stand your child in good stead on their way towards excelling within their kids dance classes.

The Different Musical Elements Of A Song


The lyrics also known as the melody are the words that the singer is singing within the song. As the lyrics are not always in time to the count it can be misleading for children to try to identify the rhythm of the song from the lyrics. Instead when listening to song lyrics have your child try to deduce some meaning, emotion or story behind the song that can help them to better understand why their routine is choreographed the way that it is and also enhance their performance within their dance lessons for kids.


The bass is the lowest of the musical elements and is often described by dancers as the ‘boom’. Within kids dance classes songs where the bass kicks on every count are often used in the initial stages of learning within a kids dance academy so that children can more easily establish a rhythm. Typically the bass is produced by instruments like a bass guitar, drums or electronically generated bass kicks that sound similar to the drums.


A snare is a sharp staccato sound that is similar to the sound that is made when children clap their hands to the beat of the music. In our kids dance classes we often refer to the snare as a ‘ka!’ sound to help children relate to the song.

Hi Hit

A hi hit is the musical element referred to in dance classes for kids as ‘tss tss’. The sound is best characterized by the sound made by the striking of cymbals.


Synth’s are electronically produced electrical signals converted into musical sound by amplifiers and speakers. The most common synth in popular music is the synth piano which sounds like a long slow bass.


In popular music the guitar is the most commonly used instrument within the songs that we use within our kids dance lessons and often defines the melody within more musical and instrumental style songs.

What Is An 8 Count

An eight count is the most common way to break down music within kids dance either as a count of eight or in two sets of four. To get comfortable with this put on your child’s favorite song and have them clap to the rhythm. Then progress this to clapping on odd counts and then counting even counts, one, clap, three, clap and so on so that you and your child can gain an understanding for the count. The reason that this is so important is because in kids dance classes children wioll generally be told that movements start, end or change on the count so it is essential for children to be able to follow the beat so that they can start there movements at the right time and maintain the right rhythm.

16 Counts… The And

The 16 count involves breaking the 8 count in two and is done by adding an and between each count. For this exercise have your child try to clap on the beat and then snap their fingers between each one, the speed of this exercise will vary from song to song but in general you will find that popular music has a tempo of 120 beats per minute. As your child progresses within their kids dance academy they can then swap the counting, clapping and snapping for specific body movements, which in time to the rhythm forms the basis for consistent performance within kids dance.

Noticing Patterns

As your children get more comfortable in identifying patterns the next step in their progress in developing a link between music and kids dance is to look for patterns within the music. For example your children might notice that there is a snare drum on the 4th count or a bass on every count. Having this understanding of the different musical elements within the count will help your child to relate to the content of the coaching within their kids dance classes.

Applying Musicality To Dance Lessons For Kids

At our kids dance academy we apply musicality by encouraging children to interpret the choreography of popular kids dance routines helping them to understand why certain movements are paired with different musical elements and how to time each movement to the count. After this children within our kids dance lessons are given the chance to choreograph their own songs and given tips on what works and what doesn’t by our kids dance instructors. A great way to help children to appreciate how musicality effects choreography and performance within kids dance is to look at varying performance of a different song. Checkout the below videos of the same song choreographed completely differently in the two versions.

How To Find Kids Dance Classes Near Me?

We hope that this article has helped you to get a better understanding of basic music theory so that you can give your child the background knowledge and understanding that they need to move to the rhythm within their kids dance classes. If you are looking for a kids dance academy and would like to get your child started with kids dance classes then why not try our unlimited kids sports coaching program Kidster which gives children access to dance classes as well as coaching in 8 other sports. Kidster runs every Friday and Saturday at Hartland International School with a 30 dat free trial available.

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