Dance Classes for Preschoolers
Berkeley Parents Network >
Classes & Lessons >
Dance Classes for Preschoolers
Looking for music and dance class for preschooler
My 4 yr old loves music and I'm looking for a class for her that will bring in some
dance as well. I don't think she's ready for ballet -- something a little more loose
and lively would fit the bill. Thanks!
I haven't tried them myself yet, but I know both the Berkeley Y and Albany Y
have dance classes for this age group.
Try Sherrie's Dance Studio in El Sobrante.4592 Appian Way right off San Pablo
Dam Road. There's a class called Tiny Tots-Introduction to Dance which includes
Jazz, Tap, Ballet, etc. They use fun props, lively music and parents are involved.
Dance class for almost 2 year old
My daughter LOVES to dance, and sing. I'd love to start her in some fun social
dance classes. I'm not looking for anything too strict. It would be great to find a
class with several different music styles where she can have fun with other kids
while moving her body to music. Everything I've seen so far either starts at 2.5 or
3 years, or seems very rigid and formal. Any ideas of something fun she can start
Kids 'N Dance 'N Theater Arts! My kid has been going there since she was a baby.
They have a fun Parent & Me class starting at 18 months (I think). Totally
playful, low stress, creative. They get to dance, sing, wear costumes (if they
want), ''play'' instruments, and even have 15 minutes of free time on awesome gym
Check out Kids N Dance - they have Mommy (or Daddy, GM, Nanny) & Me ''Creative
Movement'' classes that I think start at 18 mos. They have some free play time on
toddler gym equipment, then slightly more structured dance time with music and cute
little dress up costumes. Both my daughter and son loved it!
Kids 'n Dance (http://www.kidsndance.com/index.html) has Parent & Me classes that
start at 18 mos. My daughter was in one when she was not much older than that. It
was fun for her. At one point in class they bring out costumes and the kids dance
pretending to be dinosaurs, or fairies, or snowflakes or whatever the costume of
the day is. There was some free play with some of their equipment, there was some
stretching, and then they would take turns hopping like a frog or some other
movement. Very simple, low pressure and fun.
Morning Dance Movement Class for Preschooler
Next Fall my daughter will be in preschool in the afternoons
from 1 - 4. We're hoping to find a movement, yoga, gynastics
or dance class that would be age appropriate (all the kids
are 4-5), but in the morning on a weekday. I can almost
guarantee that if one is available, that there's a few of us
You have to check out Kids N Dance. I have yet to meet a kid who
didn't LOVE dance classes there. Especially the pre school age. Anon
My 4 year old daughter is into dance and ballerinas and the whole
thing. Do you know of a good dance class for her in the El Cerrito to
North Richmond or Pinole area?
(Announcements about classes were received from Ashkenaz and Danspace)
Looking for a modern dance class for a preschooler age 5.
Something more exciting than ballet but not as hip as hip-hop?
mother of a would be dancer...
There is a wonderful dance class at the World Dance Center every Tues and Thurs
from 4-5pm open to children who are 8-12 Years Old. Part of Brasarte, this class
focuses on dance from Brazil and the kids perform at Carnival and the Yemenja
festival every year. The quality of the class is great and this is a wonderful
community to be part of. there is also a camp associated with the school for
three weeks this summer concentrating on costume making, drumming, dance and
capeoira from different regions of Brazil. Please look at www.brasarte.com for
more information or call 528-1958.
KIDS 'N DANCE in Oakland. The class is called pre-ballet, but is essentially
modern. The owner has a background in modern dance and strongly feels that it is
a more developmentally appropriate introduction to dance than ballet. The classes
are SO MUCH FUN (my kid counts the days until it is a Kids 'N Dance Day) but are
also more than just fun - the children learn an amazing amount. Four stars in my
book! They are on line kidsndance.com and their phone is 531-4400.
Check out Kids N Dance in Oakland (www.kidsndance.com) for lots of great modern
dance classes for kids. It's one of our favorite places for dance and theatre
classes! Other places that have modern dance include Danspace and Shawl-Anderson.
There is a great modern dance school called ''Genesis Dance Sport''
www.genesisdancesport.com with a campus in JCC in Walnut Creek (Tice Valley
Rd).Teachers are professionals and dancers perform in Zelerbach. Calsses are M-W
3.50pm for 3-6 y.o. and 4.50 for 6-8. First class is free. Modern ballroom dance
for boys and girls.
My son is turning two and loves to dance (he mimics tap dancing)
and music. His grandmother takes care of him 4 days a week and it
would be great to find a class she can take him to where he can do
fun dancing/music activities appropriate for his age. We are in
the East Bay. Thanks.
Music Together classes are given all over the East Bay, and sound
like they might be a good fit for your 2 yr. old. The classes
are mixed ages from infants up to age 4-1/2. Info from their
In a Music Together class, up to twelve children and the adults
that love them meet for 45 minutes each week for ten weeks to
experience songs, chants, movement activities, and instrumental
jam sessions. Both adults and children sit in the circle and
participate, led by a teacher with early childhood educational
and music skills. www.eastbaymusictogether.com
Check out Jon's School of Music: www,jsom.com. The class is
perfect for 2-year-olds. Jon is energetic and very creative.
Most children just love him. My son has been going for 3 years
(since he was 1.5) and has learned so much. Jon teaches Monday
and Thursdays in North Berkeley.
You will love Music Together classes for your son. Look up Music
Together online, there are classes offered in many Berkeley
locations, including at Julia Morgan. My kids loved it!
Kids N Dance sounds like the right place for him. They have 2
locations- one in the Laurel District in Oakland, and one in
Lafayette. We loved the Mommy and Me (which was also was
Daddy/Grandma/Nanny and Me) class at that age, and went to the
Oakland location. I HIGHLY recommend the teacher Sara Hampton-she
can keep 10 toddlers completely engaged and happy for the whole
class! They do some gymnastic free play at the beginning and
then more dancing to music with all kinds of fun props and simple
costumes. Usually the class was pretty even boy/girl ratio at
Mom of a dancin' girl
Montclair Recreation Center on Moraga Avenue has a terrific Ballet
and Tap class for 2 years up to 4 year olds. Miss Marilyn is the
teacher and she is great. It's a lot of fun and not too
expensive. I think it's $75 for Oakland resident and $80 for non
resident and it's 8-10 week sessions with a performance in June.
My daughter did it last year and the performance was definitely
Luv of Dance Berkeley parent
I am looking for dance classes for my preschooler:
- Free movement rather than ballett
- Saturdays or afternoons
- Berkeley/Oakland/Albany/El Cerrito would work for us.
Most classes I can find for 3 year olds are weekday morning
classes or if at other times, they are for older kids.
Is Kathleen Hogan/little feet still teaching classes? Where?
Any leads welcome
My daughter took the beginner (pre-)ballet class at Albany
Community Center this spring and we had a very good experience.
The beginner class is for 3-5 year olds and it was on Friday
afternoon -- albeit early afternoon. I don't know how consistent
the schedule is from session to session.
(We expect to be back when they start again in the fall, but my
daughter wants to take tap next time! Apparently some of the kids
do both classes, back to back.)
You must not have looked into Kids 'N Dance in Oakland on MacArthur
(btwn 35th and
High). They have TONS of preschool classes offered and have a
great program. The owner and teachers are great. They have a
website, kidsndance.com I think.
parent of 3 yr old dancing dervish
This recommendation fits your needs, except for the ''free
movement'' part...Katie's Dance Studio is in El Cerrito, right on
San Pablo. It has classes for 3.5 and up, and they have Saturday
morning classes for that age. The class is tap & jazz, and lasts
45 minutes (half tap and half jazz). They use fun, hip music (lots
of Disney theme songs), and the kids love it. They will let you
''try out'' a class to see if it's the right fit for your child.
Classes start in September. (510) 524-1310.
I am looking for a dance class for my daughter that will be fun
and playful but will also help her to become more coordinated.
She trips all over herself constantly and, given the choice,
doesn't choose to be very physical. I don't want her to have to
conform to be in a ballet class (same color leotards, ballet
shoes and a bun head) and I don't want her to be dressing and
dancing as if she were on a music video. Any suggestions?
The dance classes at the Berkeley Y (which you can register
for even if you're not a Y member) are low-key and don't
require any particular clothing. My (somewhat clumsy)
three-year-old has enjoyed both the pre-ballet class and the
Rhythm & Roots class, which is basically the same as the
ballet class but with better music and added drumming. The
classes introduce dance concepts in a general way, but most
of the time the kids are moving in a pretty free-form way.
They don't have as many dance classes in the summer but there
should be some.
Mother of a little dancer
Definitely try Kids N Dance in Oakland. There is also one in
Lafayette. Our daughter started classes there when she was 4,
and has loved every minute of it. You can learn more about it
by going to the website: www.kidsndance.com
They do ballet, jazz, tap, modern, hip hop, gymnastics,
creative movement, etc. The kids learn steps, moves,
technique etc. through imaginative play in a way that
promotes creativity, builds confidence, self-esteem, strength
and coordination. They have a ton of fun and get lots of
encouragement-- it's not a rigid, conforming kind of
environment at all. And they learn a ton about dancing. The
woman who runs it is amazing, and all the teachers are
enthusiastic and wonderful with kids. Our daughter adores
them, and she doesn't readily adore adults!
We were very hesitant to enroll her initially. She was shy
and clumsy, very uncoordinated, and had terrible balance, and
she had started to notice that other children could do lots
of things that she couldn't do. We were worried that putting
her in dance classes where she would stick out even more as
the clumsy kid would just make the situation worse.
Well, she may not grow up to be a professional athlete or
dancer, but she has completely thrived in her classes at Kids
N Dance. After just one session there she already had much
better coordination and balance, and her confidence in
herself grew enormously. There is always a range of abilities
in every class, but now she mostly fits right in middle
somewhere-- instead of sticking out. And even when she was at
the most UNcoordinated end of the range, because the classes
are structured so that everyone succeeds, she never felt bad
about herself in her dance classes. As her confidence grew,
her willingness to try new things grew, and as that happened,
she quickly got better and better. Now she wants to take 4 or
5 classes there a session. She has so much fun, I think she'd
like to live there. The current session ends in mid-June. You
can also start mid-session. Do check it out!!
Their phone number is 510 531 4400
I think Luna Kids Dance would be a lot of fun for your 4-year
old daughter, as it was for mine at that age and for several
years after. It is definitely not a ''conform or else'' sort
of class: the teachers encourage kids to explore movement and
enjoy the music in each child's individual way.
My daughter took classes in Oakland, and her favorite teacher
(and mine) was named Freesia, but I'm not sure she's still on
staff. The website is www.lunakidsdance.com.
Check out Danspace in the Rockridge. http://www.danspace.com/
The Serendipity classes are great for kids that age, the
teachers are fun and it is not too formal. There is a minimal
dress code but not very restrictive (all my daughter cared
about was that they let the girls wear leotards with attached
I highly recommend Kids N' Dance. They have 2 sites - one in
Lafayette on Mt. Blvd and one in Oakland (I'm not sure
I really liked their fun and playful approach. My girls loved
We did a class at Kids N Dance and are now doing a class at
Danspace. Part of our motivation for doing dance is the same
as yours. I can't recommend Brooke Byrne at Danspace highly
enough. Both classes were enjoyable but I've seen more
actual skill-building in her class at Danspace. It's a bit
more regimented -- tights and leotard (though colors not
specified for 4y/o) and parents are only supposed to stay on
certain days. Brooke manages to make the classes very fun
and engaging while gently helping along some of the kids who
aren't getting the moves. As an example of how fun it is, my
daughter just went to a birthday party at Danspace and part
of the party is a dance class that's just like her regular
A great place for dance and creative movement is Kids 'N
Dance in the Laurel District in Oakland. They have a great
approach to teaching kids that's full of fun and imagination,
and while they do have an integrated curriculum, this school
does not have the rigidity of a formal dance/ballet studio.
Check out their website at kidsndance.com and read about
their teaching philosophy to find out more. Both my younger
daughter (age 3) and my older daughter (age 7) take classes
there and they both love it. For your 4-year-old, check out
their Creative Movement class or Pre-Ballet class. They also
have something called ''Little Theatre'' where the kids learn
songs and dances from a musical and put on a performance.
It's cute - not tacky - and lots of fun!
Luna Kids Dance on College Ave at the Julia Morgan Center
sounds like just what you want. It's VERY low key and aims
to help the kids enjoy music and movement. My kids loved it.
I want to enroll my three-year old boy/girl twins in a dance class--maybe
a gymnastics/movement class. Can people recommend a good studio that would
be good for boys and girls and not be too wrapped up in gender
There is a great tap/ballet combo class at Dance Theatre Arts in Hayward. It's taught by
Sharon Kitchen who has been teaching kids for over 30 years. My daughter loves her. There is
currently a 3 year old boy in the class as well as about 4 other girls. It's on Wed evenings
Kids N Dance specializes in teaching young children. You can do a free trial at our Oakland
location. 3 year olds get to dress up weekly in costumes made for them and dance stories
like, Kings, Queens and Dragons, Dinosaurs, Merry-go-round horses and more. All of the
movements that are taught are real dance movements but the kids just think it's a game. Like
when they try to do a passe' (balance on one leg with your toe to your knee) The teacher says,
''Tap your toe in the bath, ouch it's hot'' (they all lift their toe to their knee) Kids
learn to leap, gallope and other moves over animals we put on the floor. But the best thing
about Kids N Dance is that all of the teachers are very friendly, outgoing, animated, and see
each child as an individual. This is the most important thing at this young age. Kris Kris
I'm looking for updated info on informal (not ballet) dance classes for 3-4 year olds. I can't find ''Little
Feet'' which got great recommendations a few years ago -- does anyone know if Kathleen Hogan is still
Kathleen Hogan taught at my daughter's preschool, and she's great.
Unfortunately, she is currently in treatment for brain cancer. Put out
some good thoughts for her; we miss her very much. My daughter came home
with so many wonderful dance moves.... We're very sad that she's
suffering, and I'm pretty sure she's struggling financially as a result
Other dance classes: you can try Kids N Dance, which is in Lafayette and
Oakland on Macarthur near 35th. They have ''creative movement'' classes,
which are fun for kids.
There's also Luna Kids Dance, which meets in several different locations.
It's more creative dance.
Kids N Dance in Oakland, Lafayette and at the Orinda Rec. Center offers
creative movement for 3 & 4 year olds. Coordination, cooperation, and
basic dance skills are
developed through a curriculum using imagination and pretend play. New
are brought to every class for weekly story dances. Dancers pretend they
are baby animals, princesses, pirates, etc. that go on exciting
adventures. Our teachers are cheerful, friendly, and see each child as an
individual. Check us out at www.kidsndance.com Kris Mueller, Kids 'N
Dance and Theater Arts Owner
My daughter just started classes at Kids 'N Dance at the Oakland location.
She absolutely loves it. I'm only familiar with her teacher, Sara, and
she's wonderful with the kids. It's a drop-off class (a first for my
daughter who just turned 3 in April) and she was a little hesitant to go,
but once she saw the (very cute) storefront and saw the other kids, she
was off and running. She asks to go back every day! They have another
location in Lafayette too. I chose it based on their philosophy (check
out www.kidsndance.com for the blurb), which puts fun foremost and we
couldn't be happier.
Can anyone recommend a dance class for my almost 3-year old
daughter? In Lamorinda, Rockridge or Berkeley? Ballet is a
bit more structured than she likes, but I am still open to
feedback on ballet classes that take 3-year olds
independently. Offering a fun class where she can move to
music with children her age and up. She seems to have outgrown
mommy and me classes but there seems to be an age gap. Many
programs look like they take kids at 4 or 5 in their beginning
Try Danspace, the Serendipity class is free form, but teaches some ballet
Each class varies according to what the teacher decides to do. We love Brooke,
she is inspiring, energizing and kind to the children. They have a website.
At Danspace they don't offer pre-ballet til about 5 or 6 years.
Try www.kidsndance.com. They have locations in Oakland and Lafayette.
Check out www.danspace.com (in Rockridge). They have a variety of movement
classes for young children.
Kids 'N Dance has 2 locations, one in Lafayette and one in Oakland in the
Laurel district. We have fun imaginative dance classes for 3 year olds. The
teachers are very friendly and wonderful with the kids. The kids dress up
weekly in costumes and do story dances. They do a lot of pretend while they
learn how to dance. Check us out.
Our website is www.kidsndance.com. 510-531-4400 Kris Mueller
My three year old daughter has taken and enjoyed classes at both Kids N Dance
in Lafayette and Kinderdance at the Lafayette Recreation Center. The latter is
significantly cheaper but there are fewer times so it depends on your schedule.
Danspace has classes for kids starting at 3. They have to be potty trained.
Here's the web site:
My 3 year old daughter loves dancing so much that I'm thinking of signing her up
for a class. We're somewhat limited by logistical considerations, so don't want to
drive too far from Rockridge. Shawl-Anderson and Danspace both offer classes for
three year olds, but I worry that their approach might be a little hard-core for
that age. Anyone have experience with them for little kids? It looks like Music
Together might be an alternative that's more developmentally based -- but do their
mixed age classes really have 3 and 4 year olds or are they mostly toddlers?
My son started Danspace at age 3.5, taking the Serendipity class with
seems age appropriate, incorporating imaginative elements, and they hop,
and march, and most of the kids seem to love the class. I think each
for dance classes, you might want to try Oakland Parks & Rec.
They have a few classes. I only know specifically of the ones
in Montclair taught by Miss Marilyn. It's called Magic Movement,
very inexpensive, and the kids seem to like it (she also teaches
ballet/tap to the older kids, but it's very structured). You
should be forewarned that Miss Marilyn tends to run extremely
late, virtually never starting the first class on time, and one
time she showed up 45 minutes late for a 50 minute class just to
tell us all about some sad story of getting her car fixed or
going to the doctor or whatever it was, but she didn't even
bother to call in to the director who staffed the place so that
the 20-30 parents w/ their kids could have made better use of
their time rather than simply trying to control the restless
boredom. This and the fact that she nearly ran me over driving
very fast to the class (again, running late) were enough
frustration to make me never go again. But like I say, others
like it and there are many classes to choose from and it's
cheap. Close to your neighborhood, Berkeley Ballet at Julia
Morgan Theater has ballet classes, including a ''we dance
together'' class. But they are pricey, and still a little bit
traditionally structured. Luna Kids Dance offers classes at a
few locations-Montclair, Mills College, somewhere else. They are
more creative movement. Finally, Kids N Dance on Macarthur near
35th has great creative dance classes for all ages. They tend to
get pretty full on the weekends, but their weekday morning
classes are almost never full, and my daughter's favorite
teachers are on those days (alas, for us working types)
My daughter started taking ballet classes at Danspace when she
was 3 years old and absolutely loves it. From my experience, I
do not think it is too structured, however, teacher Brooke is
great about keeping the children focused. Her classes
emphasize movement and fun. Plus, my daughter loves twirling
around like a ballerina. Hope this helps
We go to a class that sounds like a great fit for you! My 3.5
yr old girl just started her second semester of dance class
with the most creative, and talented teacher, Sara, at
Kidsndance on Macarthur below Redwood Heights. She uses
different kinds of music, has a dialog going the whole class
about pretend blowing bubbles, imaginary balls etc and every
time they use costumes, ie kangaroos, merrygoround ponies and
today penguins. The class is well paced and the kids are so
involved, I've never seen anything like it. My kid talks about
Sara all the time. She teaches several mornings but the class
we take is called creative movement for 3-4 yr olds and is at
9:30 am on Thursdays. It's not full for the fall yet and they
offer a 4 week trial class for new students that starts anytime.
Their number is 531-4400 and website kidsndance.com
I can't believe more people don't know about Kids 'N Dance in the Laurel
are on MacArthur between 35th and High. They have been there for about a
are well worth going out of your way to get to (though easily accessible
from 580 & 13)
They have won tons of awards, have great teachers, and creative classes
for all ages
(starting at 14 months!) For the young ones, they do a new story dance
for every class.This is the place to go if you want your child to learn
gymnastics while having fun at the same time. I can't say enough good
them. From the outside storefront, you would never know how large and
space is. Give it a try. They are on line at kidsndance.com
My son goes to kids n dance and loves it. is 35th and MacArthur
they seem to have many classes all week long
My pre-school aged daughter might be ready for dance (or pre-
dance?) class, such as ballet. We live in Oakland. Any
recommendations for nearby schools you've liked, the kind of
class I should look for or engaging teachers? Many thanks!
Check out Danspace on Hudson in Oakland, near Rockridge BART.
My daughter loved the creative movement-type classes for 3.5-6
year olds called Serendipity, taught by Brooke. Very creative,
not too strict, pretty energetic, and fun. Brooke is no-
nonsense in a gentle way, very effective with a group of
To all parents of preschoolers, I wholeheartedly recommend truly
classes for the 3 to 7 year old set (and beyond): World Dance Center
Avenue) in Berkeley offers a great range of classes for kids and adults;
I study in the
adult ballet classes there. My teacher Nona Refi has recently begun
classes for preschoolers on Tue and Thurs from 3:15 to 4, and there are
creative dance classes for the same age group on Monday and Friday. I'm
about dance; I've danced my whole life, and have had the full complement
teachers all around the country. Nona is one of the very best teachers
I've had: fun,
musical, correct in her instruction, and wise and insightful, too! We
love her. My 19
yr old son and his girlfriend have also studied with Nona; she gets
reviews from every age group. See www.brasarte.com for the full schedule
classes. Let your kids dance with great teachers; they'll thank you!
I would like to sign my 3-year-old (will be 3 in March)
up for either gymnastics classes or dance classes. She doesn't
do well with the ''free-play'' stuff, I think she'd like
something with instruction, but fun and flexible (loose
structure). I was thinking either the instructional gymnastics
at UC Village or some kind of ballet or dance. Any
recommendations? She LOVES to dance!
*mom of a dancer
You definitely should check out Kids 'N Dance on MacArthur in the Laurel
The speciallize in working with young ones (they even 18 month old
family participaion) Incredibly engaging and creative for the kids. They
combination gymnastics and dance or classes specializing in one or the
have story dances every week with different costumes and though it looks
and games the kids really learn skills. My 2.5 year old has been with
them since she
was 18 months and her balance, concentration, coordination and
abilities seem to be above her peers that have been in other movement
daughter loves it so much that we have to play ''dance class'' 3-4 times
a day - she
is always one of her teachers and at this point can lead us from warm-up
the way through to the end when the kids get stamps. The teachers are
(especially Sara) and all of them seem skilled in both dance and early
education. As you can tell, I love this place and want to see them get
their new Oakland location. (They have a studio also in Lafayette that
around for 10 years or more) check out their website kidsndance.com
Hi. I'm looking for some kind of dance class for my little
girl. Maybe ballet, hula or even hip-hop classes. Any
recommendations will be appreciated! Thanks!!
My daughter has been attending dance classes at Shawl-Anderson
since she was 3. The teachers, Reenie and Maurice Charriere, are
wonderful. They engage the children with movements they can
really do, and incorporate props (ribbons, balls, etc.) and
instruments (drums, shakers) that the children love. My daughter
is now 6, and remains enthusiastic about this program. (There
are separate classes for different ages ranges.)
Another plus is that there are boys in my daughters class, and
one of the teachers is male, which I think is a good role model
for both boys and girls (not to mention again that Maurice
himself is a really good teacher.)
I am looking for a dance class in Alameda for my 2.5 year old.
My preference would be for tap lessons but we're open to other
types of lessons, too. Also, if 2.5 is too young, I am happy to
wait until she's three to enroll her.
Our daughter goes to Dance 10 in Alameda at 9th/Santa Clara.
The class is a combination of tap, jazz, tumbling. We've been
there for more than a year and our daughter loves it. We
started when she was a young 3 but you could call the studio to
find out if they have an age requirement.
I checked the archives for a toddler dance and/or movement class
and most listed were no longer being offered. Does anyone know
of a good, informal class in the Berkeley area for my three year
East Bay Dance Center
Little Feet Dance & Movement
Luna Kids Dance
Can anyone recommend a good pre-ballet or other dance class for
3 year-olds in Oakland or Berkeley? (I've checked the website
and the information is either old or not specific to this age.)
Julia Morgan Center for the Arts
this page was last updated: Jan 22, 2013
BPN is now a 501(c)(3) non-profit and we are building a new website!
Read more, and see how you can help:
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2014 Berkeley Parents Network