Author Topic: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it  (Read 14267 times)

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Emmy

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2009, 02:01:50 PM »
I think that's a terrible attitude.  Does she feel that a child who isn't a genius in pre-school should not move onto kindergarten? 

What is important is that the child enjoys the activity.  Somebody else mentioned the other benefits of a ballet class such as exercise, balance, learning discipline, socialization, ect.  Even if a child isn't a natural talent, they will still learn and improve by taking the classes.  Unfortunately, as kids get older, many dance classes and sports become all about how well the activity is performed instead of enjoying playing or performing it.  Kids who aren't stars tend to drop out (or be cut) from teams and dance classes, thus losing all the other benefits of the sports or dance classes.  When I was a kid, my parents found this great gymnastics studio.  They were focused on fitness instead of just practicing for some performance (and charging the parents a fortune to see it).  I remember seeing improvements in my fitness.  For example, when I first started, I could not do a hip pull-up or even come close.  A few months later, I was doing them with ease.  It wasn't a competition with anyone else in the class (new students came in all the time, thus there were different levels), thus no 'stars' and everybody who stuck with it saw improvements and thus made the class more enjoyable.

whiterose

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2009, 09:46:48 PM »
I was not particularly good at ballet. Which you would never suspect today, given my posture and the way I pose for pictures.

I was also one of the heavier girls in my class. I had not hit puberty yet and the weight had not redistributed.

I cried often in ballet class. I am one of those ultra-competitive people who want to be the best in everything. So you bet I did not take the instructor's criticism well.

I switched from ballet to joining a gym closer to the house in order to get better exercise. But I still benefited from ballet.
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Sabbyfrog2

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #17 on: September 28, 2009, 01:19:22 PM »
A family friend coaches ice hockey. He says that the players who are really good in their early teens rarely make it big, as they get too comfortable in their skills and stop practicing. The ones that aren't the stars of the team at 13 are much more likely to be big stars at 20, and the players who were stars at 13 will more likely have quit. Don't know if this applies to ballet, however...



Well of course it does. Practice practice practice makes perfect. I have seen the complacant attitude many times. The ones that start out already "good" seem to have a mindset that they don't need to work as hard, because they are already good, so they don't. The ones that aren't as skilled or naturally talented, have to work harder just to match the good ones. And then, work evern harder to keep it, and they usually go on to be the professionals because they have a much higher work ethic and never let their bodies get soft because they are always working to get better. I am not saying this is the way they all are, but in I have witnessed this numerous times.

Nurvingiel

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2009, 04:04:08 PM »
A family friend coaches ice hockey. He says that the players who are really good in their early teens rarely make it big, as they get too comfortable in their skills and stop practicing. The ones that aren't the stars of the team at 13 are much more likely to be big stars at 20, and the players who were stars at 13 will more likely have quit. Don't know if this applies to ballet, however...

Well of course it does. Practice practice practice makes perfect. I have seen the complacant attitude many times. The ones that start out already "good" seem to have a mindset that they don't need to work as hard, because they are already good, so they don't. The ones that aren't as skilled or naturally talented, have to work harder just to match the good ones. And then, work evern harder to keep it, and they usually go on to be the professionals because they have a much higher work ethic and never let their bodies get soft because they are always working to get better. I am not saying this is the way they all are, but in I have witnessed this numerous times.
When Kyle Wellwood was put on waivers by the Toronto Maple Leafs, he had gone soft. His conditioning was poor, and people said he was as talented as he was lazy.

The Vancouver Canucks picked him up and he got his butt in gear. Now he's a top conditioned, hard-working, and very skilled centre.

I love Kyle Wellwood. I respect that he pulled himself together like this, and he shaped up. Plus, he is very, very good.
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flo

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #19 on: September 28, 2009, 04:16:47 PM »
Well my 3 year old can fall down 3 times walking thirty feet.  How good would she really be at ballet?  But I am pretty sure taking classes would help her with muscle tone, paying attention, and be loads of fun. 

RegionMom

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #20 on: September 29, 2009, 09:48:27 AM »
I was at a gymastics meet with mostly 9-12 year olds and there was one much taller and older girl who stood out, not so much because of her size, but because of her SMILE.  The other girls were competing, she was enjoying herself. 
And that made others smile. 
(her scores were not great, but even her family was happy and I liked sitting near them.)

I met a woman in her 60's who just started piano lessons a few months ago.  Her family could not afford it for her as a child, then she was busy as a mom herself, and finally decided to just do it now that she is old enought to realize it does not matte what others think.  And she is happy!!

Do it for the fun of it. 
I sometimes run 5ks and 10ks, and I will NEVER even make the 1st half, but enjoy it.  Shoudl I quit because I will never be at the top?


I REALLY like that story about asking kindergarteners vs. college age kids.  It makes me glad to consider myself a big kid. 

Virtual crayons and sports eqiupment for ALL!!

:)
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flo

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #21 on: September 29, 2009, 02:57:10 PM »
And any musical instrument you'd like, too!

KitFox

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #22 on: September 29, 2009, 03:13:31 PM »
I've heard SS-type parents say things like that about whatever activity their little precious is in and doing well at. It seems to me that many of those kinds of parents feel that the slower, less talented, less attractive and therefore less worthwhile children are simply taking up space and holding Little Precious back from achieving his/her full potential, which is as we all know to make mommy and daddy look good. /sarcasm

My favorite approach has been to say "I feel the same way about golf*!" and just wait.

*Golf = anything the person speaking is terrible at but enjoys.

RegionMom

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #23 on: September 29, 2009, 11:02:35 PM »
re-moe--ack!  How did I miss the virtual instruments?  I play piano myself, and DS the trumpet! 
ACK!!  And children's choir! 
Let me toss in virtual craft items also, like yarn and paint, and whatever else anyone else enjoys doing.

let the inner child be unleashed!

:) :)  ;D
Fear is temporary...Regret is forever.

PaddedPaws

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #24 on: September 30, 2009, 03:05:53 PM »
I'm glad I didn't have this mind set when I started taking singing lessons for the first time at age 23! I hardly ever sang at all before that. I will never be a performance level singer, but I that's not my goal. I have learned SO MUCH from singing lessons that applies to other parts of my life, from my health to how I relate to people.

It's a pity that some parents are so focussed on having their kids be "best" at something that their kids miss out on so many interesting life experiences.

magiccat26

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #25 on: September 30, 2009, 03:12:24 PM »
I'm a 34 year old woman who's taking Ice Skating lessons  :o.  Am I good at it?  Oh heck no, but I'm having a blast.  I fall down less and less every time and it is really great exercise.  It's also really motivating my 6yo DD (who takes lessons at the same time...but in the kid class) to do well...because she sees that Mommy is willing to try new things and has a sense of humor about my own inadequacies.  (We compare notes at the end of class to see who fell down the least number of times  ;D....usually she wins!)

If we only ever do things that we're good at, how will we ever get good at anything?  I'll never be Michelle Kwan (sp?), but at least I'm having fun and getting exercise.  Now Kitten, on the other hand, look out Winter Olympics, here she comes!!!  ;)
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M-theory

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #26 on: September 30, 2009, 07:12:45 PM »
I'm a 34 year old woman who's taking Ice Skating lessons  :o.  Am I good at it?  Oh heck no, but I'm having a blast.  I fall down less and less every time and it is really great exercise.  It's also really motivating my 6yo DD (who takes lessons at the same time...but in the kid class) to do well...because she sees that Mommy is willing to try new things and has a sense of humor about my own inadequacies.  (We compare notes at the end of class to see who fell down the least number of times  ;D....usually she wins!)

If we only ever do things that we're good at, how will we ever get good at anything?  I'll never be Michelle Kwan (sp?), but at least I'm having fun and getting exercise.  Now Kitten, on the other hand, look out Winter Olympics, here she comes!!!  ;)

Can I just say that I think you're doing a wonderful thing? I can't imagine either of my parents taking piano lessons or Tae Kwon Do just so I'd feel encouraged. That's truly active parenting!

blue2000

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #27 on: October 01, 2009, 01:32:04 AM »
I'm a 34 year old woman who's taking Ice Skating lessons  :o.  Am I good at it?  Oh heck no, but I'm having a blast.  I fall down less and less every time and it is really great exercise.  It's also really motivating my 6yo DD (who takes lessons at the same time...but in the kid class) to do well...because she sees that Mommy is willing to try new things and has a sense of humor about my own inadequacies.  (We compare notes at the end of class to see who fell down the least number of times  ;D....usually she wins!)

If we only ever do things that we're good at, how will we ever get good at anything?  I'll never be Michelle Kwan (sp?), but at least I'm having fun and getting exercise.  Now Kitten, on the other hand, look out Winter Olympics, here she comes!!!  ;)

Can I just say that I think you're doing a wonderful thing? I can't imagine either of my parents taking piano lessons or Tae Kwon Do just so I'd feel encouraged. That's truly active parenting!


And an awesome life lesson - Mommy falls down when she is learning, just like little kids. She isn't perfect. But she can still have fun at it!

My niece (6 yrs old) takes dance lessons as well as some other things. Some people in the family, especially my mother, will go on and on about how good she is at everything. Because that is the important part, isn't it. ::) Not whether she is having fun, or even if she is learning new things. It's that she is GOOD.

I'm not keen on this to start with, as Niece has always been a little too worried about her performance. She doesn't need the adults around her reinforcing this. But now Niece's mom has mentioned that she has had anxiety attacks (at SIX) about not being perfect at something. They don't think it is a big deal (they do try to reassure her). The whole thing just makes me sad. :(
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Germane Jackson

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #28 on: October 01, 2009, 01:53:12 AM »
Goodness me, I tried a lot of things out when I was a kid. My mom might be a nasty piece of work these days but when  I was a little kid she was very supportive of me. I tried tap, jazz, ballet for 2 years when I was 5 and 6 but after the second year I decided I didn't like it, I tried soccer (stunk at that) piano (was good at that) horseback riding (was good at that), clarinet( was decent enough) irish dancing (was so-soo at that when I was a kid, but I got good as an adult) singing lessons (was ok) guitar (was lousy at that) bass guitar (was decent enough)

The thing is, my mother never pushed me into doing any one thing. If I liked it I stuck with it and I had fun, if I didn't, I would finish out my course/season and move on. I never cared if I was the best or brightest I just like doing different things . I'm still a dibbler and a dabbler and I know I will never be the ultimate anything but I couldn't care less, as long as I get enjoyment out of it, that's what matters. It's not like I ever had dreams of making a career out of hobbies.

magiccat26

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Re: Children should only do ballet if they're good at it
« Reply #29 on: October 01, 2009, 01:40:45 PM »
I'm a 34 year old woman who's taking Ice Skating lessons  :o.  Am I good at it?  Oh heck no, but I'm having a blast.  I fall down less and less every time and it is really great exercise.  It's also really motivating my 6yo DD (who takes lessons at the same time...but in the kid class) to do well...because she sees that Mommy is willing to try new things and has a sense of humor about my own inadequacies.  (We compare notes at the end of class to see who fell down the least number of times  ;D....usually she wins!)

If we only ever do things that we're good at, how will we ever get good at anything?  I'll never be Michelle Kwan (sp?), but at least I'm having fun and getting exercise.  Now Kitten, on the other hand, look out Winter Olympics, here she comes!!!  ;)

Can I just say that I think you're doing a wonderful thing? I can't imagine either of my parents taking piano lessons or Tae Kwon Do just so I'd feel encouraged. That's truly active parenting!


And an awesome life lesson - Mommy falls down when she is learning, just like little kids. She isn't perfect. But she can still have fun at it!

My niece (6 yrs old) takes dance lessons as well as some other things. Some people in the family, especially my mother, will go on and on about how good she is at everything. Because that is the important part, isn't it. ::) Not whether she is having fun, or even if she is learning new things. It's that she is GOOD.

I'm not keen on this to start with, as Niece has always been a little too worried about her performance. She doesn't need the adults around her reinforcing this. But now Niece's mom has mentioned that she has had anxiety attacks (at SIX) about not being perfect at something. They don't think it is a big deal (they do try to reassure her). The whole thing just makes me sad. :(

One of the reasons I decided to take lessons at the same time was because Kitten was starting to get down on herself when she couldn't do something perfectly the first time.  I think it's tough for kids because they see the adults and older kids around them doing things well (bike riding, writing, reading) all the time and it looks "effortless" and they have to keep trying again and again to get it right.

It also really doesn't help if we as parents focus so strongly on "being good at it" and focusing on the skill (dance, soccer, whatever) rather than focusing on the fun and exercise aspect.  Children are impressionable in ways we cannot imagine.  The smallest comment resonates with them.  When we think we're being encouraging, "Oh honey, don't worry about missing the goal, it just takes practice to get really good!"...we could be sending a message of "You need more practice, you're not good, you missed the goal."
“If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning.” — Catherine Aird