There's nothing worse than wanting to become a dancer, or helping your child realize a dream, but don't have the funds needed for classes. One of the most surprising things about signing up for a dance class is the ongoing cost of classes and accessories. There are a few ways that you can still make your dream come true.
Offer a Service in Exchange for Classes
If you can’t afford dance classes, perhaps you could offer a service such as helping clean the dance studio, handle the phones, babysit for the owner, or possibly assist teaching young children. If you or a parent can sew, you could help make costumes for recitals.
Many studios also provide scholarships to deserving students. When you call to get information
about classes, ask if they offer a scholarship program, and get the appropriate, application details.
Your Parents Don’t Want You to Take Classes
If your parents are against you taking dance classes, maybe financial problems are the reason.
Maybe they are worried about money or it could be something else, such as thinking that classes will take away from your schoolwork.
Whatever you find out, try to reason with your parents and let them know it is really something you want to do.
Let them know exactly how you plan to pay for classes,
Handle all of your school work and practice too.
If you have an action plan in place, they may be more willing
to let you take classes.
And if you are having trouble convincing your parents, ask a teacher, friend or other family member to help you speak to them and prove your point.
Automatic Debit and Early Registration
If you can register early for classes, or pay by automatic bill payment from your debit card or credit card, you can often receive a 10%-40% savings on dance lessons. Check the company’s website for details about early registration, and discounts for using automatic debit to pay for lessons.
Online Dance and Music Lessons
Consider signing your children or yourself up for dance and music lessons online. Companies that offer online training use webcams and online tutorials to instruct children. In addition to the low costs of the classes, families can save money on gas by taking online music and dance lessons.
Cheap Leotards For Specific Age Groups
Toddlers in creative movement classes are often free to wear whatever style of leotard they want, provided it is form fitting and allows free movement. Let your daughter help pick her own leotard to ensure that it is something she enjoys wearing and in which she feels comfortable. Leotards for very young children often include attached skirts. If you choose a style with a skirt, make sure it is not long enough to trip her or get caught on ballet barres. In most cases, the simpler the leotard design the better. Find leotards for toddlers at dance retailers, online or for a discount at consignment stores.
Pre-Ballet and Beginner Leotards
Most ballet schools begin implementing dress codes when children enter pre-ballet and beginning dance classes. Schools usually require pink or light blue leotards for children of this age and level. If the instructor does not assign a specific style or brand of leotard for your child, look for a basic style without any designs or attached skirts. Choose a leotard with a "ballet-cut" leg, meaning it will not ride up as your daughter dances. Most teachers prefer leotards with cap sleeves, long sleeves or tank sleeves as opposed to spaghetti straps or halters for young children. Find basic leotards for pre-ballet and beginner classes at dance retailers or online.
Leotards for Older Children
Dance schools have different requirements for older children in intermediate and advanced levels of dance training. In pre-professional ballet schools, girls will usually wear a black leotard from about the age of 10 onward. For jazz, tap and modern classes as well as less strict studios, older children may be permitted to wear whatever color leotard they choose. If your daughter's teacher has no preference for style or sleeve-length, purchase tank leotards for spring and summer months and a few long-sleeved varieties to keep your young dancer warm during the winter.
Leotards for Teens
As your daughter becomes a teenager she will likely become more particular about the style of leotard she wears. While most teens are still subject to dance studio dress codes, those that are allowed to wear what they want to dance class often choose leotards with bold colors and flattering designs. Halter, spaghetti strap and leotards with zip fronts are popular with pre-teens and teenage dancers for ballet, jazz and modern classes. While bright colors and subtle patterns are fine for class wear, avoid leotards with large patterns, rhinestones and other extra accents that might be a distraction in dance class. Some websites let teenagers can design their own leotards.
Getting leotards at cheaper prices can also do wonders for a wardrobe. Not only do leotards work perfectly for dance classes, they are handy to have around as a versatile fashion piece for mixing with street clothes. Nothing can show of a trim waistline like wearing a leotard with a good-fitting skirt. Because they fit close to the body and have a wonderful stretch, they become perfect for layering under heavier, bulkier clothing in fall and winter.
Don’t Get Discouraged
Write down your key problems. Then, think of creative ways to overcome these obstacles. If you just don’t know where to turn, contact the studio owner. Explain your situation, and try to come up with some options.
Keep trying and don’t give up. You or your child can always watch classes for free, and learn this way too.
It's not expensive classes or clothes that determine a dancer's fate. Passion and determination are qualities money can't buy.