Dance in Education is a program serving Pre-K through 12th grade students at various public schools in Allen County. These programs are customized to meet the needs of individual students and range from in-residency programs (classes during the school day) to after-school programs (dance troupes). The program has been in operation for over 12 years. In fiscal year 2020, FWDC successfully expanded this program to include arts integrated residencies that use movement/rhythm as a medium to teach Language Arts, Math, Social Studies and Science.

Fort Wayne Dance Collective can tailor any residency to meet the needs of a particular school. There are no boundaries to what educational and multi-arts learning can achieve for students throughout the region.

A few examples of what Fort Wayne Dance Collective Dance for Education residencies have included are:

Career Academy Early Childhood Lab Center: An in-school residency in which preschool and kindergarten students are taught creative movement based on an exploration of body parts, shape, space and locomotion combined with stories and feelings. Young children, such as preschool kids, learn easily through enjoyable activities that encourage hands-on learning or full physical involvement. Dance classes require mental concentration and active participation. Dance and movement activities help children become more aware of their bodies and learn gross motor skills of coordination and control. Increased self-awareness and improved physical skills promote confidence and a raised sense of self-esteem.

Weisser Park Elementary School: A year-long, daily in-school and after-school residency in which a variety of classes are taught to students in first through fifth grade. These classes included: Dance Academy (Creative Movement, jazz, modern, and ballet classes throughout the year), Dancing in the Musical, Dance Troupe (a traveling, performing group of students), and Taiko drumming.

Wayne High School: A year-long, daily, in-school residency in which high school students with and without disabilities are taught a range of dance forms and techniques, dance history and terminology. This program is funded by the AWS Foundation, Fort Wayne Dance Collective, Fort Wayne Community Schools, and private donations. This program includes an annual Spring concert featuring students of all abilities.

Schools currently served within Fort Wayne Community Schools:

  • Career Academy Early Childhood Lab Center
  • Weisser Park Elementary School
  • Lakeside Middle School
  • Memorial Park Middle School
  • Miami Middle School*
  • North Side High School*
  • Wayne High School*

Schools currently served within East Allen County Schools:

  • New Haven Primary-High Schools*
  • Woodlan Elementary & High Schools*

For More Information Contact: Program Director, Ashley Benninghoff

*In partnership with FWDC’s Dance for Diverse Abilities outreach program

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