For almost 30 years Dancing Classrooms has partnered with schools and community-based organizations

Cultivating essential life skills in children through the joyful art and practice of social dance. To date we have served over 600,000 young people worldwide. Our vision is schools and communities where every child is connected, respected and given an environment in which to thrive.

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Dancing Classrooms works. Research proves it.

Our proprietary program develops the best of what academics call Social Emotional Learning or SEL, life skills like motivation, grit, connection and listening that help us relate, interact and advance as respectful, empathetic human beings in a coarsening world.

Year after year, school principals, teachers and families have witnessed the elevated self-esteem, shared experience and engagement of each Dancing Classrooms student that propels enhanced performance in- and out-of-school in the semesters that follow.

Even in a virtual and socially-distanced world, we’ve heard time again that our program results in better student performance and engagement in the classroom and beyond.

Cultivates Key Behavioral Skills

In 10 weeks, the Dancing Classrooms residency supports effective learning and student ownership of their learning, with 95% of students seeing increased engagement and motivation. 89% increase in self-discipline and focus.

10 Weeks to Strong Neural Connectivity

The arts make your brain grow. Participating in the arts for as little as 10 weeks has been shown to increase the resiliency and neural connectivity of the brain, making for increased self-awareness and better memory processing.

Develops Social and Collaborated Skills and Relationships

The program enhances social confidence through partnering with and supporting classmates and adults. 93% strengthened collaborative and team skills. 71% demonstrated greater social confidence.

Contributes to a More Active Lifestyle

Dancing Classroom’s program allows children to have another avenue to be physically active in addition to physical education classes. This contributes to helping children meet the necessary 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity daily and may encourage healthy lifelong activity habits.

Artresearch – researcher observations (2016)
American Journal of Health Promotion, January/February 2012, Vol 26, No. 3

You Make an Impact

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Supporters like you help us provide our unique programs and powerful curriculum to 17,000+ children in over 150 NYC schools, and through our affiliate sites across the country and around the world, annually.

The collective support of individuals, corporations, and foundations like you, sustains Dancing Classrooms’ ability to pivot and flexibly meet the needs of our communities.

With annual support:

  • We can more readily provide digital dance resources
  • Maintain our remote and hybrid learning models through our Homeroom Edition curriculum
  • Pay Teaching Artists for their dedication and artistry
  • Foster new community partnerships and enhance existing connections, and reach more young people

Given the effects of Covid-19 on learning loss, the social, emotional, cultural, and kinesthetic benefits of dance are crucial now more than ever.

Thank you for your support!

Donate Today

Your donation will not only help us provide the program to school children, but you can also assist in providing training for our Teaching Artists, funding our Dancing Classrooms Academy weekend program, supporting the Colors of the Rainbow Celebration, and helping us develop new programming in response to the needs of our communities.

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“Dancing is about connections … to our friends, to our families, to our neighbors.

It is one of the most expressive ways we celebrate and communicate our cultures and communities.

With Dancing Classrooms, we are able to reach children in existing classroom settings and address fundamental issues of mutual respect and self-esteem – issues that social dance puts into practice. We hope to inspire children through dance to do well, to respect one another, to be proud. This program is about more than dance, it is about teaching children to take a bow.”

– Pierre Dulaine & Yvonne Marceau

Our Legacy

The Dancing Classrooms program was launched in 1994 by world-renowned ballroom dancer Pierre Dulaine as a not-for-profit project of the American Ballroom Theater Company (ABrT).

The Dancing Classrooms program is an arts-in-education program teaching ballroom dance to the upper elementary and middle school students of participating schools.

As seen in the documentary film “Mad Hot Ballroom,” Dancing Classrooms is an in-school residency for every child, regardless of background or experience. During the 2017-18 school year Dancing Classrooms served over 45,000 children in 23 sites: New York City, Omaha, North Texas, Newark (NJ), Ontario, Philadelphia, Long Island (NY), Fort Myers (FL), Northeast Ohio, Southwest Louisiana, Geneva (Switz), Pittsburgh, St. Louis, US Virgin Islands, Winston-Salem, Seattle, Zurich (Switz), Israel, Southern Chicago, Richmond (VA), Jordan, Minnesota, and Washington, D.C.

Our mission is to cultivate essential life skills in children through the practice of social dance.

Our vision is to have schools and communities where every child is connected, respected and provided a safe environment in which to thrive.

Dancing Classrooms residencies are integrated into the school day, cultivated through curriculum connection and aligned with the Common Core and other state standards. We have developed a syllabus of ballroom dance that nurtures mastery of an art form in a fun learning environment, while fostering respect, team work, confidence, politeness, a sense of joy and accomplishment. Essentially, we “teach life skills wrapped up in ballroom dance.”

While Dancing Classrooms has been hailed as an effective program for teaching social dance, the program provides many other benefits. A Dancing Classrooms residency creates a learning atmosphere that engages all of the intelligences — inspiring students who are typically introverted and reserved, to step out and shine. Engaging in ballroom dancing focuses children’s physical energies and increases health through the joy of movement. In a school, the Dancing Classrooms residency builds community among its participants and within the school community as a whole.