We recently had the pleasure of meeting Katie Rose during the 2019 Health Fair in Archdale. When she visited our booth, we began talking about The Basics Randolph. She immediately connected with the five Basics because she’s already doing all five when she visits child care centers, like First Church of God Dayschool, to teach Zumba Kids classes.
If we take a moment to think about our interactions with children, whether we conduct story times at the local libraries, teach in early care and education, or are directly caring for our own young children, it’s easy to find the parallels to The Basics Randolph. Katie connected The Randolph Basics in her work with young children as a shining example!
Maximize Love, Manage Stress
Zumba Kids classes are all about sharing love and relieving stress! We give each other hugs and high-fives to maintain a positive and loving environment. I give the children lots of verbal praise such as “Great job moving!”, “You’re such a good listener”, and “I’m so glad you’re in my class”. The children release their stress through physical activity in a judgment-free atmosphere. The focus in Zumba Kids is to move to the music with friends, instead of trying to get every step right.
Talk, Sing, and Point
In Zumba Kids classes, children volunteer to tell the instructor important things that have happened to them in their day leading up to the class. Children are encouraged to talk about steps that they enjoy doing. They request to have certain jobs such as being the line leader for the parade held at the end of each class and to be the map holder during story time. At the end of class, each student is expected to answer the question “What did you do at Zumba class today?”. Children often sing the lyrics to the songs we dance to. They point to musical instruments they want to play during the parade segment of class, and they point to objects in illustrations during story time.
Count, Group, and Compare
Zumba Kids is a multi-cultural program focusing on Latin American countries, the United States, and countries around the world. Therefore, children learn to count in English and Spanish as they learn sequences of steps. For example, “We are going to march for four steps. Let’s count to four in Spanish!”. Children learn to compare aspects of various cultures with their own during the cultural lesson. This includes musical genres, location on a world map, holiday customs, typical food dishes, and children’s style of dress.
Explore Through Movement and Play
Zumba Kids is a dance fitness program designed to get kids moving through the use of age appropriate dance steps and kid-friendly music from genres including American pop, salsa, merengue, reggaeton, cumbia, and more. A simple game such as Musical Chairs or Limbo is often used to give the children a brief break from structured dancing.
Read and Discuss Stories
Each class in Zumba Kids has a “Cultural Lesson” component. This is what makes Zumba Kids so unique! Instructors read stories to children that educate them on the diverse cultures that correspond to the types of dance they are learning. For example, if the children are learning a cumbia style song from Mexico near that country’s Independence Day, the instructor might read a story describing how children celebrate Independence Day in Mexico. Children are asked questions about the story and how it relates to their lives.
Zumba Kids classes teach resilience by instilling the idea that it’s okay to make mistakes. Even instructors forget the steps to a song from time to time! The children are reminded that there is always another opportunity to get stronger, do the steps faster, etc. Zumba Kids also teaches mindfulness by asking students to be aware of what their bodies are doing in space. For example, are they respecting other students’ space on the dance floor? Are they giving their best effort? At the end of class, students perform a cool down to make sure their minds and bodies are calm before returning to their classrooms.
Katie Rose is a licensed Zumba, Zumba Kids, and Zumba Kids Jr. instructor. She has worked with children for 10 years in various capacities. She has had a lifelong passion for exercise and fitness and sharing multicultural experiences in her local community. The Zumba Kids program combines all of her passions and provides an outlet for educating children in how to stay active, healthy, and engaged in a multicultural world.
Currently, Katie teaches weekly Zumba Kids programs to preschool children, after school programs, and dance studios. Children ages 5-10 years of age are welcome to join the Zumba Kids class that meets on Wednesdays and Fridays from 3:30-4:15 at The Arts Academy located at 304 Trindale Road in Archdale, NC. For more information on starting a Zumba Kids class in your child’s childcare center, preschool, or after school program, please email Katie Rose at firstname.lastname@example.org or message Katie Suzanne Call Rose on Facebook messenger.