4 Dances


Dances are fantastic to get children moving, warmed up and engaged. They help children learn to listen to and follow directions, they help internalize the beat, and used to identify phrase lengths. Dancing is fun and it feels good to move the body with music!

Four songs are included in this package.

    Clap, Clap Bow (Danish Greeting Song)

    Irish Polka

    Sasha (Russian folk dance)

    Seven Jumps (Danish folk dance, adapted)

Download Includes:

  • Music and Instructions (for each song)
  • Dance instructions
  • 4 accompaniment tracks

Classroom / Studio License allows you, as a teacher, to share this copy with any number of your own students. Copies may not be shared with other teachers or non-students.
The intent of this license is to accommodate a vocal studio where one teacher has multiple students, and/or elementary school music programs where one teacher teaches multiple classes of students.

4 Dances

Audio & Description

Clap, Clap Bow (Danish Greeting Song)

     Greeting song, done without a partner

     Students remain in their own spot as they follow the instructions.

Irish Polka

     Greeting song, done without a partner

    Students remain in their own spot as they follow the instructions.

Sasha (Russian folk dance)

     Dance with or without a partner.

     Free movement for the B section before returning to a new partner.

Seven Jumps (Danish folk dance, adapted)

     Circle dance (whole class moves together)

     B section cumulatively adds seven different freeze poses.  

     Older students love the physical challenge of this “dance”.

Teaching tips

Use simple dances while students are entering and exiting the music room. Students simply do the actions as they walk, stopping now and then to do a fancy step or two. It gets them listening from the moment they enter the room.

Students who do not want to clap hands with a partner can do the clapping motions in the air. They are still participating but they are not being forced into an activity they find uncomfortable.

Use simple movement songs and adapted dances to fill the time when students are waiting (e.g. at a school assembly while waiting for all the students to arrive). Teachers and administrators will love the fact that the children are engaged and not getting into mischief. You will look like a magician in addition to being a musician!

Use dances and movement to create variety in a music class, providing a break from focused mental activities and from sitting for long periods of time. Use dances and movement to prepare or practice beat, phrase lengths, listening to instructions and responding to music. These are all music curriculum outcomes (just in case an administrator asks you to justify having so.much.fun.)

For “littles” use marches, fiddle tunes and other songs with simple musical forms and create your own dances with your students.

Older students appreciate moving to music that is more complex. Use movements that keep the beat without making any sound (tapping shoulders, winking, bending knees, etc.). Let the students be the leader, changing the actions for each new phrase – a great listening exercise!

Composer's Notes

Although I didn’t compose any of these four dances I had fun arranging them to use with my students. And I do have some dancing stories to share!

When I was a student, we didn’t have a music room in my small elementary school. The music teacher would travel to each classroom to teach music (sound familiar?) so we didn’t have much space for things like dance and movement activities. However, dance was part of our gym classes. Our teacher would bring out the record player that looked like a square box. The top was the speaker that would detach and be set up to amplify the scratchy 45 rpm record so we could dance. Those of you who are 50 years or younger may have to go online to read up on what a 45 record looks like! That scratchy little record allowed us to have great fun dancing to A-hunting We Will Go and Seven Jumps (among others). When I was teaching in my first school, among the resources I found in my room was an old 45 rpm dance record that included Seven Jumps!  Although I use a version of the music I created on my keyboard, the essence of that early recording has been preserved as closely as I could remember it. My students enjoy this dance as much as I did, and I STILL enjoy doing it with them, although I am not as limber as I was when I was eight years old!

Irish Polka and Clap, Clap Bow were songs that I discovered during my early years of teaching and they became a staple movement activity with my students. They work well as a greeting song as students enter the music room and any time we need a movement break. I also discovered that they could be pressed into service to keep students engaged (and out of trouble) when they were waiting for a school assembly to begin. I taught at a K-8 school with over 600 students. For an all-school assembly, the “littles” sat in the front which meant they arrived in the gym first. They would sit and wait for the rest of the students to arrive and be seated which sometimes took up to 15 minutes. This was long enough for them to become restless and get into mischief. I started doing simple music activities to keep them amused. We did follow the leader/keep the beat activities to lots of lively music. We also had some songs that I taught every class in the lower elementary grades so we could sing a few things while waiting. Then I discovered that Irish Polka and Clap, Clap Bow could be done while remaining seated. The students loved having something to do, the teachers were thrilled to be relieved of managing restless pupils and the principal was delighted with the wonderful behaviour of the students. Music for the win!

Sasha is a dance I discovered late in my career. I wish I had known about it earlier as this quickly became one of my students’ favourite dances (and mine also). The minor tonality and the lively music are a great way to perk up sluggish students, getting them moving and greeting others in the class. Although it is meant to be a partner dance, it also works to do the actions “in the air” if a partner has not been located in time, or if a student is needing personal space and doesn’t want to touch anyone else. I traced my hands and cut out the shapes using spongy craft material. Students without a partner could use my spare pair of hands on the nearby wall. (This is also a great adaptation for those who are averse to touching or being touched by others). Sasha was also a song that was used in the “waiting-for-the-assembly-to-start” rotation of songs.

Dance is such a great way to teach children to listen to instructions, move to the music, feel the beat and phrases, learn about respectful touching of others, and learn dances from other cultures. I didn’t know I was learning all those things when I was in elementary school. Dancing was just fun, and it still is!

Related Products - age 8 -10 and under


Classroom / Studio License


, , , , , , , ,


, , , ,




There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “4 Dances”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *