Activities offered are tumbling, juggling, tight wire (2’ high), poi, unicycle, hand balancing and beginning fabric aerials. These activities help integrate the proprioceptive and vestibular systems, spatial awareness and balance to promote healthy physical development. In today’s screen-filled world, circus skills training offers an engaging alternative in providing opportunities for movement and coordination. And of course, circus arts are fun!
Our Circus Club crew is excited to teach skills that challenge and meet each individual student’s readiness for the next level. As such, as the children “level up” they will be given more opportunities to learn new skills.
Here is the basic outline of what is available to each grade level:
1st, 2nd & first half of 3rd: tumbling, tossing, balance activities, hula hooping, beginning juggling, poi, spinning plates, clowning, balance beam and beginning acro-balance.
Second half of 3rd & 4th: In addition to the above, next level juggling and hula-hooping, unicycle, diablo, rolling globe, rola bola, flower sticks, beginning aerial and stilts.
5th – 8th: In addition to the above, giraffe stilts, aerial arts, free-style unicycle, juggling with clubs and rings, fire poi, advanced acro-balance and hula-hooping, advanced rolling globe, slack line and tight wire.
Dawn Archer is excited to add Circus Club to the DWS Enrichment program and will manage the program.
Nathan Ballenger (Mr. B) is the DWS Middle School STEAM teacher and brings more than 20 years of circus experience to the program, having honed his skills as a juggler, stilt-walker and acro-balance performer while traveling through India and Ecuador.
Angela Martinelli is the DWS Games teacher and brings a wide set of circus skills to the program, including two years of experience helping manage and teach Circus Club. Additionally, Ms. Martinelli produced a fine Circus Club performance last spring with lots of movement skills, costumes and live music.
“We want to help children build capacities, have the courage to try new things and develop a love for movement for a lifetime.”
Charlie Orphanides is the DWS 3rd Grade teacher and taught circus skills at the Brooklyn Waldorf School. Trained in Spatial Dynamics and Bothmer Gymnastics, Mr. Orphanides will will teach unicycle, tumbling, tight-wire, balancing and other ground skills.
”The circus arts are a form of artistic expression which enhance the capacities of children in engaging their capacities in thinking, feeling and willing.”
Mad About Hoops has been part of the DWS Aftercare program during the past two years and will be bring hoop skills to Circus Club this winter.
Up Down Circus will bring an aerial artist teaching aerial fabric, lyra-hoop and trapeze.
The Archery Club was founded in 1999 as an after-school, self-funded, extracurricular activity. Students in Grades 6 through 12 are invited to join at a cost of $25 per semester. Funds are used to add, maintain, and replace equipment. The goal of the archery club is to safely introduce the students to the sport and to provide the physical and mental training needed to become a skilled archer. Another goal of the archery club is to provide another means of enjoying outdoor recreation. The club uses “traditional” archery equipment to emphasize the archer’s skills, no sights, mechanical releases, pulley or cams. The mood of the club is non-competitive, safe and fun.
Each year, high school students are invited to enter a math contest sponsored by the Mathematical Association of America. Typically, a number of students participate in this annual event. Interested students may also meet weekly as a math club to work on contest problems or other math questions.
Community service activities are organized by faculty and parents and could include Kindergartners distributing Valentine posies to neighbors or eighth grade students working at homeless shelters. Seniors and students in Grade 8 have community service built into their curriculum. Other activities might include singing and playing recorders in nursing homes, food drives to local shelters, knitting blankets for elderly, reading to children in hospital, gardening at community shelters, and performing puppet shows in the community. High School students are required to complete twenty hours of community service each year.