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How to Become a Children's Dance Instructor

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Teaching children how to move to music and express themselves through dance can be a satisfying career opportunity with plenty of rewards. People who teach children should have a playful attitude, the ability to break down complicated dance steps and flair for artistry. If you've decided you want to teach kids how to dance, a college degree isn't required but it can give you an edge in this highly competitive market. A popular dance instructor can expect to earn between $13 and $25 per hour or class, depending on the type of dance offered.

Select which type of dance you want to teach. Popular dance types are hip-hop, ballet, country-line and team dancing. Choose more than one style if you wish. Pick a style you enjoy performing as this will make transferring your enthusiasm easier.

Take dance lessons in the field of dance you are interested in teaching. Be patient and take the beginner, intermediate and advanced courses. Learn all you can about the dance style from movement to history.

Practice the dance style frequently until you can perform it flawlessly and feel comfortable enough to teach it. This may require many hours of practice to perfect.

Apply for dance certification through a local dance company or a state or national entity like the National Dance Education Organization. Sign up for the OPDI or Online Professional Development Institute and complete the 10 courses offered. This may take two to three years. You can skip this step if you don't plan to seek employment at certified dance studios. As of 2011, each course costs $450.

Offer your services as a volunteer at a summer camp or with a community outreach program. This is a good way to build your resume and show off your dance style.

Create a resume and list your education and volunteer experience. Give details about the style of dance your prefer teaching and tell why you want to teach children.

Visit local dance studios and apply for employment. Leave your resume and offer to try out for the position.


Get personal training from a mentor if you want to take on in-depth study.


As a former senior sales director with Mary Kay and the co-owner of a renovation company, Monica Patrick has firsthand knowledge of small business operations. Besides start ups, she has extensive skills in recruiting, selling, leadership, makeup artistry and skin care.

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