There are several threads to this story, so bear (bare?) with me.
The girl has, over the years, been desperate to have ballet lessons. As a toddler she did some baby ballet classes which were lovely and, more importantly as far as I was concerned, fairly cheap. They had to stop when she was 5 as school beckoned and that was the age the classes ran to. I managed to ignore the pleas for ballet for a while after she stopped – starting school and Rainbows took up a lot of her time and energy. Also, ballet all looked a bit formal once she’d left the younger classes and I didn’t really fancy it.
In the summer of 2012 I finally caved in to her pleas and booked her into lessons starting in September ’12. She promptly fractured her wrist, but the ballet lady kindly allowed us to defer to January ’13. She enjoyed ballet, but I was right, the lessons were quite pricey and we had to buy a specific uniform which also turned out to be a little costly. She was supposed to have her hair in a proper bun every week (complete with hair coloured net I think) so we were never going to last that long! We gave it a year though, and although she was enjoying the lessons I didn’t feel she was really passionate enough about it to keep going (she would happily skip a lesson, given half a chance, nuff said).
I’ve always wanted the boy to do some form of dance. It’s exercise, good for the posture, confidence building and, if he learns to dance now, it might just keep him occupied in the evenings when he’s (quite a bit) older. He showed an interest in ballet when the girl was doing it and used to join her baby classes occasionally. He refused to join in with her big girl classes though as there were no other boys and by the ripe old age of 6, things like that are starting to matter.
Fast forward to November, with the reality of not having a dance class to go to, and the girl started asking what other sort of dance she could do. I said I’d look into it but that I thought that street dance was probably a fairly good starting point (does that sound like a random choice plucked from thin air to distract a child, while I tried to do something else? Yes, you’re right, it was).
Of course I forgot to do anything about it, and she started gently nagging again a couple of weeks ago. The boy pricked his ears up at the mention so I made a mental note to look into classes for both of them.
The children both come home from school with flyers for various local clubs at least once a week and I invariably chuck them straight in the recycling (usually grumbling about what a load of over-priced tosh it is).
Yesterday the girl came home with a flyer that caught my eye. It was for very reasonably priced street dance classes at their school early on a Thursday evening (although late enough that I can comfortably get there in time from work). I phoned the number, expecting to be put on a waiting list, and was told they could start the next day (today).
Well. It’s been a bit of a revelation for both of them, and for me. It was very fast but the steps were reasonably simple so they both felt quite confident in the dances very quickly. There are boys in the boy’s class so he’s happy and very enthusiastic about it – both at the time and when we got home. I thought the girl would run for the hills when the music came on, it was so loud, but she didn’t. She got up and danced her socks off. I don’t think she knew many others in the class and a lot of them were a bit older than her, plus there were lots of other mums watching but that didn’t phase her at all.
Instant confidence boost for the pair of them.
Obviously, his replication of street dance at home was so fast that all I could get on camera was a dark blur. The girl kindly slowed it down for me a bit.