Getting to Know our Teachers at Positions Dance Studio

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Here at Positions Dance Studio, we have an incredible team of teachers! They are so dedicated to what they do and we hope you ALL have the opportunity to get to know them a little deeper than just “5,6,7,8!” So… we asked them some questions and here are their responses! Enjoy!

Miss Kelly

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I earned a BA in History from Siena College and a MA in Social Studies Education from Hofstra University.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love seeing the “aha” moments happen in my students, especially for younger kids!

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Misty Copeland and Travis Wall

What is your favorite local restaurant?

The Brixton and Molto Vino

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

An oldie but goodie - Center Stage!

Miss Jillian

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I first earned a BFA in Theater Arts and Performance from Hofstra University, with minors in Dance and English. I later received an MA from Hofstra in Communications, as well as an MA in Educational Theater from NYU.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love sharing my passion with children and teaching them how wonderful the arts can be.

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Isadora Duncan (the creator of Modern dance) because she decided to rebel against the dance world, created what she thought was a truer style of performance, and changed minds and dance forever.

Do you have a secret talent?

I can make monkey sounds!

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Molto Vino

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Center Stage

Miss Dominique

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I went to Temple University where I studied Kinesiology and Dance.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love modern and jazz!

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

I have so many favorite choreographers, so the people I draw my inspiration from really depends on what I am teaching!

Do you have a secret talent?

I have a green thumb!

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Barrique, Molto Vino, Del Fuego, and Fancy Lee!

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Center Stage

Miss Annie

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I attended Argosy University where I earned a BA in Psychology. I also hold a Special Education Transition Certificate from Seton Hall University.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love sharing my passion for dance with others who share that same dedication to this form of art. Teaching dance lets me combine my 3 favorite things teaching, dancing, and kids!

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Luke Hawkins. I started following his Tap dancing on Instagram and I was hooked! His creativity truly inspires me.

Do you have a secret talent?

I love to cook!

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Mannino’s Restaurant and Lounge (I happen to work there too)!

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Center Stage

Miss Jeanine

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

SUNY Oneonta & The Fashion Institute of Technology. I studied Fashion Merchandising.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love children!

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Derrick Hough & Mark Ballas.

Do you have a secret talent?

Drawing & Painting!

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Swell Taco

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Dirty Dancing

Miss Lisa

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I earned a Liberal Arts degree from Nassau Community College. I also studied nutrition for the time I was there.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

It’s fun! It’s certainly not your average desk job and I’m grateful for that. There’s so much to gain while teaching dance and there is so much to learn from the kids at Positions. You learn to be silly and you learn growing up shouldn’t be your main goal. You learn to use your imagination and on top of it, you keep yourself active. I love being able to watch all my dancers grow into the dancers I know they can be.

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Crazy answer: I actually love Shaun T. If you don’t know him he’s the fitness coach from cize it up. I love how he makes dance into physical exercise and you don’t even know it. It’s fun, and he encourages you.. even though you’re in the living room, on the floor, falling face first trying to do some hip-hop move you thought your mom-self could accomplish... but he is still there for you, telling you that you did a great job.  If I could be as encouraging and supportive as Shaun T, I’ve done my job right.

Do you have a secret talent?

I can touch my nose with my tongue!

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Hmmm... I’m not sure because I’m not really from Babylon, but I hear Babylon Burger Bar is fantastic!! Would love to try it soon.

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Ah so many!!!! Leap (my newest favorite) but I also used to love Barbie and The Nutcracker when I was 5. But now, with a little boy, Barbie isn’t so much in the picture haha. I still watch movies like Center stage, Save the Last Dance and Dirty Dancing, which are my top 3 favorites of all time!

Miss Meagan

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I earned a degree in Dance Studies from Long Island University.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

I love spreading my passion for this art form. Dance has changed my life in so many ways and when I was younger it was the one thing I could always depend on. My dance teachers were some of the greatest role models I had growing up and I hope to be that light for another child.

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

Misty Copeland. Her story just resonates with me and gives me hope as a professional dancer.

Do you have a secret talent?

I can juggle!! It all started one summer when I was in high school and I have been doing it ever since. I can do all sorts of tricks and turns.

What is your favorite local restaurant?

I love The Carriage House.

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Dirty Dancing! Patrick Swayze is my all time favorite and I could watch that movie all day, everyday.

Miss Meredith

Where did you go to school and what did you study?

I went to Hamilton College where I studied Dance and English Literature.

Why do you love teaching at Positions Dance Studio?

It’s gratifying to witness a student experience an "A-HA - I get it!" moment.

Which dancer or choreographer inspires you the most?

The late George Balanchine and Twyla Tharp.

Do you have a secret talent?

I can sew (but around Positions Dance Studio that's not much of a secret!)

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Fancy Lee

What is your favorite dance movie or book?

Bolshoi Confidential by Simon Morrison

So if you haven’t done so already, you NEED to watch Center Stage with your dancer. Clearly a winner among our staff! We are so proud to have such a talented, knowledgeable and loving staff. Aside from the fun facts, one thing we all have in common is that we are passionate about dance and LOVE sharing our passion with our students.

If you want to learn more about our AMAZING teachers, pop over to our meet the staff page to learn more!


3 Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your Free Trial

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We know there are so many great dance studios in the area and choosing the best one for you can be a tough decision. This is why at Positions Dance Studio, we offer free trials to new customers. Today on the blog we wanted to talk about a few tips to get the most out of your free trial and share with you what you can learn by taking advantage of them.

BONUS ALERT: Check out our demo at the bottom of this post showing exactly how to schedule your free trial today!

You can start learning about a dance studio the second you sign up for a trial. We recommend taking a moment to reflect after contacting the studio. How easy or difficult was it to sign up? If you spoke to someone on the phone or via email, how was the studio’s communication?

This very first interaction can be a glimpse into how the customer service is at a studio. At Positions, we strive to create a very positive experience from the beginning of our customer’s dance journey. Our new customers can schedule their free trial online or by calling/emailing the studio. Our website and parent portal are always up to date with the most current information so our customers are always informed.

As you arrive at the studio, take a moment to observe. How are the students and teachers interacting? Do the students look happy? How do you feel about the lobby? You will know you are at the right studio when you feel good upon walking in. One of the biggest priorities at Positions is to make everyone feel welcomed. We firmly believe that dance is for everybody! During your free trial, you should be able to feel that energy right as you enter our studio.

The most obvious advantage of doing a free trial is seeing if your child LIKES the class and enjoys their teacher. Signing up for a session of dance is a big commitment. By having your child do a trial class, you won't have to guess if they are going to have fun and learn something new. You will know!

Our teachers at Positions strive to create a positive environment in the classroom that fosters student growth both in their technique and in their self-esteem. A trial will give you the confidence to know your child is in the right place.

As you can see, a trial class is an important step in finding the right dance studio. We offer free trials to new customers all year long. If you would like to get a first-hand look at what Positions Dance Studio is all about, schedule your free trial today!

Below we have made a free trial demo so you can feel confident in booking yours.

What To Know If This Is Your First Recital

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Recital is right around the corner and it is sure to be an amazing show! Whether this is your first recital or your 20th, you will be blown away by all your dancer has accomplished in one year. For those new dance parents out there, you may be wondering what this recital thing about. Although there are so many moments you will cherish throughout recital week, there is a lot of information to process beforehand. Use these simple tips to prepare so that you and your dancer can have a magical time come recital week.

  • Read everything. Twice. Recital is a big production. It is a multi-day event including dress rehearsal, and of course the big show. Like we mentioned earlier, there is a lot of information to process so we recommend reading everything twice. All the recital handouts are available on our website. There is important information relevant to your dancer on every handout.  

  • Highlight dates, times, and locations that are relevant to your dancer. It’s a great idea to go through the dress rehearsal, picture, and recital schedules in order to highlight the call times, dates, and locations for your dancer. There are a lot of numbers in our show. By highlighting your dancer’s classes, you will ensure there won’t be a mix-up. These schedules will be posted and emailed home at the beginning of May so keep your eyes peeled for them!

  • Check the website for questions. As information becomes available to parents, we will be updating the spring recital page on our website. If a question pops up, our website is there to help and is available 24/7! Need more help? Feel free to contact the studio or stop by the front desk next time you are in.

Above all, we want all of our dance parents to enjoy the moment! Recital is the perfect time to take a step back and appreciate your dancer. They have worked so hard all year and they will be so proud to show you what they have learned. Remember that this is what recital is all about! As a dance parent, you get to sit back and enjoy seeing your dancer shine on stage, what could be better than that?!

We can’t wait to see all of our Positions dancers on stage for our recital on Sunday, June 10, 2018, at West Babylon High School.

 

Find More Opportunities To Be Creative

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Creativity is something we highly value at Positions Dance Studio. By encouraging creativity in the classroom, your children will be better equipped to solve problems, express emotions, become more self-aware, and so much more. We think that is pretty great, don’t you? It got us thinking, what other ways can your dancers build more creative time into their lives? We have put together a great list of ideas for all ages to try.

  • See A Show. There are a TON of great shows to see for all ages and budgets, especially at this time of year. Whether it is theater, dance, music, or art, seeing something new can open your dancer’s mind to new possibilities. Seeing other people's creativity come to life is a great way to get inspired!

  • Take a new class. Sign your dancer up for something they have never tried before. That could be a new style of dance (check out our current schedule here to find one) OR something completely different like painting or acting. By exposing your child to something new (in a safe environment like a class) you are building the foundation that new is fun and exciting and it is OK to not be the “best” (at any age).

  • Make up a dance at home. This is always a hit at sleepovers and family parties. Choreographing requires a dancer to try new things and put a story or emotions into movement. At the end of the night, your dancers can put on a show in the living room for you. We promise it will be so much fun for everyone! BONUS: Grab that camera and record it every once and awhile. You will be amazed at how your dancer’s choreography progresses year after year, all thanks to their creative mind being strengthened.

This list has us ready to go have some fun, how about you? Like we mentioned, your dancers already have a leg up in the creative department JUST by coming to dance class. These could be a few really great (and fun) ways to keep the creativity flowing outside of dance class. Does your family do any special projects or activities that foster this skill? We would love to know it the comments!

 

Meet The Owner Of Positions Dance Studio: Kelly Peckholdt

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We know you have seen her around the studio but how much do you actually know about our fearless leader here at Positions Dance Studio? Now that our year has gotten off to an AMAZING start, we thought it was about time to sit down and get to know Kelly Peckholdt a little bit better. You will not only learn more about her but also her hopes and dreams for Positions and why she loves every moment with your dancers!

 

How did you come to own Positions Dance Studio?

When I graduated college, I was looking for a job teaching either middle or high school social studies. The summer I graduated, I was looking for extra work before the school year and approached the former owner of Positions to see if she needed additional teachers. Luckily, she hired me to teach a couple of ballet classes that year. A couple of years down the road, she pulled me into her office in the middle of a teacher's' dance rehearsal (two weeks before that year's recital!) to tell me she was retiring. She had not yet found someone she was comfortable with selling the studio to, and she threw out the idea to me as a former student of Positions. I always knew that down the road I wanted to own a studio, but I never thought my dream would happen at age 24!

 

What are your hopes and dreams for Positions Dance Studio?

I want to continue to expand our focus on proper dance technique. I am a stickler, ESPECIALLY in ballet, for proper technique and alignment work. My big focus this year is injury prevention strategies to implement in our classes. Our student body has grown since I initially took over the studio over 5 years ago, and I'd love for it to continue to grow so we can share our passion with as many children as possible. I'd love to (down the road, not now) expand our building, especially as things like our fitness program and wedding services grow. I just love sharing the gift of dance AND fitness with as many people as I can!

 

What makes Positions different than studios in the area?

We truly strive to create unique opportunities and experiences for our students. We are constantly coming up with cool field trips and performance opportunities, ways to give back to the community, and workshops/learning experiences. Not many recreational studios travel with their students, especially out of state.

 

What is your favorite age group to teach and why?

I love teaching our younger students - especially age 4 and 5. They really start to "get it" at that age but can still be really silly. I'm always intrigued by how toddlers' minds work and the funny things they say! More recently, I was subbing for a Ballet/Tap class on a Saturday morning, and even though many of the students knew me I reintroduced myself. One little girl raised her hand and said, "I know you, Miss Kelly! You're the lady who cleans my teeth!" I've been cracking up ever since.

 

If you could describe Positions in JUST 3 words what would they be?

Caring, respectful, professional

 

Describe one moment that reminded you of why you do what you do?

Whenever a parent pulls me aside or sends me an email and tells me how much their child enjoyed a class or an event...or even just tells me how much dance has impacted their child's life. Dance has had such a tremendous impact on my life, and it makes me so happy to know that other children are experiencing that.

 

What is the BEST part of your job?

Interacting with students in the classroom. Sometimes when I'm teaching ballet, I'll be doing plies at the barre with my students, and the thought pops into my head, "Wow, I get to plie for a living!" It's the coolest thing ever.

 

We could not be more fortunate to have such a passion-driven person like Kelly leading the way for Positions! If you would like to learn more about classes at Positions, check out our current schedule. Is there something else that you would like to know about Kelly? Next time you see her in the lobby, go ahead and ask, she loves getting to know students and families better!

 

 

What Makes Positions Dance Studio Different

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We know there are so many great dance studios to choose from in the Long Island area. When deciding where your child is going to dance, there are so many different factors to consider and we totally understand that. What are the teachers like? How well maintained is the facility? What is the classroom dynamic? A dance studio often becomes like a second home for young dancers and their families. That is why it is SO important to find one that you and your dancer connect with.

We feel great about all the things that make Positions Dance Studio different from all the other studios in the area. We pride ourselves in cultivating an environment where our students come out of dance class learning not only dance steps but more importantly, life skills. We are very confident that you will feel just as great knowing that your dancer’s second home is at our studio. “For Your Island,” a local show concentrating on the arts, culture, and entertainment in Long Island,  featured our studio. In the episode, you will get to know the studio owner and director, Kelly Peckholdt, see the space, and get a glimpse into our classes. It is the perfect first step in getting to know our studio and its values.

 

As you can see, at Positions Dance Studio we truly care about each and every student. It is one of our top priorities to make long lasting, positive relationships with all of our students and their families. We have classes for students no matter what stage in their dance journey they are in. Our family-friendly environment helps our students gain self-confidence, self-esteem, and discipline all while maintaining age and developmentally appropriate classes. Using age appropriate music and costumes in class and for performances will always be our policy. We want your kids, to be kids!

Our experienced and qualified teachers keep our students busy learning proper terminology and technique while teaching them important life skills such as discipline, focus, and grace that they will carry well beyond their dance years. We are beyond passionate about dance along with creating an all-inclusive, positive environment for our students.

 

Like we said, we know there are a ton of great studios out there and we are SO honored that our students have chosen our studio as their home away from home.

If you would like to learn more about what sets Positions Dance Studio apart contact us today or stop in during one of our Open House Events (6/25 4:30-6:30, 6/26 4-6, and 6/27 6-8). We are now accepting enrollment for our Fall 2018/2019 session and would love to see you there!

 

 

 

Is Your Child Ready For Dance Class?

Knowing when your child is ready for dance class can be tough! Whether you have a toddler, preschooler, or a child in elementary school, making the decision to sign your child up for dance classes may be nerve wracking. Every kid is unique and of course, you know your child best! To make the choice just a tad easier, we thought we would share a few tell tale signs that your little dancer is ready to jump right in!

  • They LOVE music and movement! Does your dancer demand their favorite songs in the car? Do they start wiggling when a song comes on? Have they ever put on a “show” for you in the living room? If yes, then they will love dance class!

  • They are ready to take class independently. We DO offer classes for children 18-36 months accompanied with a parent ( called “Dance With Me”) but if your child is older than 3, they will have to be emotionally ready to take class without a parent in the room. Sometimes the adjustment takes a couple weeks and that is OK. We do have viewing windows in our studios so you can be sure to peek in.

  • They can follow simple instructions. We realize we are talking about little ones so we DO NOT expect perfection but your child should be able to follow simple instructions most of the time. Some examples of what we ask in class are: imitating the teacher’s movement, taking turns, and making a circle with their new dance friends.

Like we mentioned, each child is different and we love that! We hope this list gives you a little more confidence knowing your child is ready to have a blast with us in class. If you are still not sure, give us a call or contact us here to schedule a free trial class! Getting a tour of the space and meeting the director before the start of a new class can make the transition so much easier for both you and your child, so what are you waiting for??

 

How To AMAZE Your Dancer At This Year's Recital

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Recital week is almost here at Positions Dance Studio! We could not be more excited to see all the hard work come to life and I’m sure you and your dancers feel the same. They have put in countless hours at the studio and you have supported them every step of the way. It is time to celebrate right?! With all the fun and excitement comes something else not so pleasant, STRESS. Yes, recital week is stressful for everyone (for us too!). There are costumes and accessories to pack, special hair and makeup to master, a handful of different check-in times to keep track of, and much much more. It is a lot to handle for the seasoned dance parent not to mention for those first timers out there! We want to make sure we are doing all we can to make your week as easy as it can be for you and your dancer. Let’s face it, if you are stressed out, your dancer will be stressed out too. And that is not fun for anyone. So we thought we would give you a few ways you can feel less of that awful stress and more of the fun and excitement. Following these tips will ensure that you can AMAZE your dancer at this year’s recital!  

  • Read EVERYTHING. Twice. Make sure you are really going through all the emails and handouts you receive from the studio. They contain information like check-in times, order deadlines, day-of instructions, etc. Take the time to really process the information and write reminders in your calendar.

  • Take Inventory Now. Do you have all the right shoes? New tights in the correct color? All hair and makeup supplies? Have you double checked all costumes and their accessories? Figuring out you are missing something last minute could be the worst feeling ever! You will feel much better knowing you have a few days to run to the store rather than just a few hours.

  • Make a recital day PLAN with your dancer. Everyone will feel much better after you talk through logistics and expectations. Talk with your dancer about when you will start getting ready, who will be helping with quick changes, when will they eat, and when and where you will meet them after the performance. You will rest assured knowing they know what to do and they will feel more prepared in handling the day without you.

  • Be positive, have fun, and enjoy every second! Recital is only once a year and trust us, it goes FAST! Be proud of your dancer no matter what happens on stage. It takes a lot of guts to get on stage and your dancer wants no more than to do the best they can do. Don’t be shy in telling them how you feel after their performance. Performing after all the preparation should feel amazing and as their parents, you get to share that feeling with them. They deserve that shining moment and so do you. Make sure you take a moment or two to look around and feel the joy with your dancer.

We want nothing more than for you and your dancer to enjoy this moment because it is the BEST part of being a performer (and a proud parent too) and like we mentioned, it will go fast! Take the stress out of the week and you will be able to truly savor each precious moment.

Have any questions about recital week? Check out this FAQ page we have and call or email the studio with anything you don’t see mentioned.

 

Who Is Your Hero?

Written By Chelsea Anderson

With Memorial Day and our recital quickly approaching, and both having to do with heroes, several students and faculty were asked to name who they consider a hero. A few students recognized the ‘dance moms’ that make them who they are. Sofia Giorgio, a member on one of our Performance Teams, had this to say about her mother: “She’s nice and helpful and wants me to get good grades.”

            Nicole Jarvis and Maya Ryan, also on Positions Performance Teams, recognized their instructor, Miss Dominique, as a hero and a “good role model,” along with their mothers. Along with the many other men and women who fought and have suffered for this country, these young ladies took the time to remember their loved ones that fought in the Army. 

Annie Castellano, one of our very talented teachers got to marry her hero! Her husband Chris was a Sergeant in the United States Army and now currently works in the Reserves. He also is a member of the FDNY in Queens, New York. “Being a part of his life has allowed me to see all the courageous jobs he has taken part in.” said Annie, “My husband’s dedication to his country and others is to be admired, yet he is so humble.”

Jeanine Cullen, also a staff member here at Positions, said she would also like to remember the many heroes that serve our country well. “My three/four year olds are doing their recital dance dedicated to these heroes.”

            Now that spring has officially sprung, our dancers and staff have many things to look forward to (recital being one of them!) We asked our friends what their favorite part of the new season. Some of the responses included birthdays, barbecues, end of school, going fishing with the family, and, of course, the recital!