Patty Cake Polka
Patty Cake Polka is an American folk dance. Place the students in pairs. For the first four strokes, each dancer touches the heel of one foot to the floor, then the toe of the same foot and repeat. Partners go in the same direction; therefore, if a person uses the left foot first, the partner would use the right foot. After two heel-toe movements, the partners slide three times in the same direction as the foot they used. Then they perform the same pattern with the other foot. After two heel-toes and three slides on the opposite side, the partners tie their right hands three times quickly, tap their left hands three times quickly, tap both hands three times quickly, and then press their own thighs three times. After this sequence, the pair link opposite elbows and twist in a small circle for four strokes.
At this time, you can get the children to change partners or stay with the same partner and start dancing again.
The Chicken Dance is a song of Swiss origin that is fun for all ages and yet simple enough for the very young.
The song has two sections. For the first four songs of the song, have the children attach their thumbs and fingers together (like a mouth talk) four times. Then instruct them to bend their elbows and clear their hands near the armpits to form ‘wings’. The kids will pat these wings four times for the next four strokes. During the next four beats, hold the children’s arms bent at the waist and twist at the waist four times. The last four strokes in this first section are marked with four brackets.
This pattern should be repeated four times. Then, for the second part of the dance, dancers quickly find a partner, link opposite elbows and jump around in a circle until the music changes back to the first section again.
La Raspa is a Mexican folk dance that also involves partner dancing. Connect the children. Have them put their hands on their hips and stick out their right feet with their toes pointed up and their heels on the floor. By using lively hops, children will switch from right heel to left heel and back to right heel for the first three strokes. Let them rest on the fourth bar and then repeat the pattern, but start with the left foot this time. Repeat this section four times.
After this, the partners have opposite elbows and turn in one direction for eight bills and then in the other direction for eight bills. Follow this section by returning to the first sequence of heel-hops. The dance dances can be fun and beneficial. The dance teaches physical coordination, rhythm and creativity. Learning and practicing dance steps help children understand patterns and follow directions. Dancers can also learn about other cultures and traditions. You can teach the children’s dances by using clear instruction, repetition and practice.