The DC program supports dance education students by presenting an opportunity for each student to donate their time and talents to their community while transforming their own teaching and learning experience at UNCG. The DC partnership breaks down walls of exclusivity that are often found in dance training by creating a type of creative arts laboratory where all members take risks and learn from one another.
The DC program is aligned with UNCG service and research initiatives as well as integrated with the K-12 professional teacher training program within the UNCG College of Education. DC program curricula supports twenty-first century learning skills of communication, collaboration, and creative thinking with state and national dance standards, as well as student collaboration and self-expression, culturally responsive curricula, and the celebration of dance for all in the community.
As a result, undergraduate and graduate dance education students are encouraged to try out alternative pedagogical strategies that are not possible in traditional practicum experiences due to time, inadequate space, or the number of students.
By investigating alternative pedagogy practice and engaging student-centered curricula within a supportive community, university students have begun to redefine and to reframe their beliefs and values about dance education.
Through the program, DC students have begun to realize a more comprehensive dance curricula, one that focuses not only on dance technique but also aesthetic development, creative process, collaboration and reflection.
Young DC student dancers describe the difference as that of being valued, knowing that participation in the program not only serves to educate them but also supports the training of future dance educators.
Such innovations in pedagogical practice not only influence dance instruction now, but also may influence the way that dance is taught in years to come.