Des Plaines Park District

Des Plaines Dance Academy Class Descriptions

DiscoverDance – The DiscoverDance Early Childhood Program is a series of movement classes designed to introduce children to the creative and expressive world of dance. Each program offers children the opportunity to develop their natural movement ability in a multi-sensory environment.  
Pre-Dance – These introductory classes begin with the fundamentals of dance such as rhythm, coordination, and creative movement. Dancers will learn the basics of each discipline including terminology, positions, and barre work, as well as simple center combinations.
Ballet – Students will be taught the classical techniques of ballet, including terminology and positions. Classes will start with a proper barre warm-up, and then move into center and progressions. Ballet is the foundation for all forms of dance. It provides strength, balance, flexibility, posture, technique and knowledge of terminology critical to success in other dance forms, including jazz, modern, lyrical, tap, and hip-hop. *Please note: It is strongly recommended by the Dance Staff that all dancers take ballet in conjunction with any other dance genre. This class is highly recommended for dancers interested in joining Artistry in Motion Dance Company.
Jazz – Combines techniques of classical ballet and modern dance with current forms of popular dance.  Students will be taught movement vocabulary ranging from the isolation of certain body parts to the movement of the entire body with accents of musical rhythms. Classes begin with a warm-up, including isolations, stretching, strength building, and center barre work. Dancers will learn progressions down the floor as well as center combinations, working on performance and style. *Please note: In order to properly advance, it is strongly recommended to take ballet in conjunction with jazz technique.
Modern – Dancers will focus on contractions, spirals, basic floor work, and elemental concepts of space, time, and force. They will also build core strength and flexibility in a fun and encouraging environment.Contemporary – Students focus on spacial and body awareness, use of body weight, floor work, leaps, turns, efficiency of muscle usage, and safe body alignment. Contemporary dance encourages dancers to be versatile in their expressions, being able to portray a wide array of movement styles and emotion.  *Please note: In order to properly advance, it is strongly recommended to take ballet in conjunction with contemporary.
Tap – Students learn to make music with their feet. Early levels learn basic terminology in an interactive classroom, working in center and down the floor. Basic combinations will be taught, allowing students to practice connecting different steps. Advanced levels focus on how to elaborate on these basic ideas, incorporating intricate rhythms, and will be exposed to the exciting “loose ankle” technique of rhythm tap.
Hip Hop/Teeny Bop – Students will learn to groove to the newest and best of upbeat street funk. Classes will begin with a basic warm-up, including isolations, stretch and strength, and learn combinations in center and down the floor, incorporating style and attitude. Exercises focus on increasing flexibility and strength, total body connectivity, and creative problem solving. Hip Hop is the pinnacle of self-expression.
Pre-Pointe – This class is designed for the serious student who would like to advance their ballet technique, while gaining tremendous strength and stability in their feet, ankles and legs. A student will advance to Pointe when the instructor feels the student’s body is strong enough to support her in pointe shoes without any risk of injury. Thera-bands are highly recommended for this class as they aid in the strengthening of the feet and ankles (available for purchase through the Des Plaines School of Dance for $5).
Pointe – Students will learn the basics of dancing en pointe.
Acro – Students will enhance their flexibility, strength, balance, and tumbling skills in this new program. Taking the beginner preschool level student from log rolls and summersaults to the advanced student tumbling effortlessly across the floor! The program is designed to teach acro through safe, proper progressions and stresses the importance of alignment and training everything on both sides of the body.
Aerial Silks – Aerial Silks combines strength, grace, and flexibility to create a unique type of movement. You will learn to manipulate the silks and move your body in new ways. How to pose, climb, and invert on the silks are just a few of the skills you will learn in addition to conditioning and how to combine poses into unique sequences.

Administrative & Leisure Center2222 Birch Street • 847-391-5700

Golf Center Des Plaines353 N. River Road • 847-803-GOLF

Lake Park Golf Course & Marina1015 Howard Avenue • 847-391-5730

Mountain View Adventure Center510 E. Algonquin Road • 847-391-5733

Mystic Waters2025 Miner Street • 847-391-5740

Prairie Lakes Aquatic Center515 E. Thacker Street • 847-390-4949

Prairie Lakes Community Center515 E. Thacker Street • 847-391-5711