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Students Share Their Creativity Through Dance

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Every school, just like every student, is unique and moves to its own beat. KQED wants to showcase student dance videos and highlight the creativity, purpose and artistry of diverse young dancers, so we launched the Youth Media Challenge If Schools Could Dance.

Based on the KQED/PBS Digital Studios series If Cities Could Dance, which features dancers from around the country, the If Schools Could Dance challenge invites students to submit short narrated dance videos of any genre. All videos will be published on KQED Learn’s online showcase, and select pieces will be shared on KQED digital channels throughout the year.

Arriving on the heels of KQED’s first Youth Media Challenge Let’s Talk About Election 2020–which received over 1200 student video and audio commentaries on election issues important to them–the If Schools Could Dance challenge poses a different kind of question to students: What does dance mean to you and why?

This youth media challenge is aligned with National Dance and California Technical Education standards.

Even in today’s distance learning context, dance students can practice media creation skills to collaborate, create and perform for an authentic audience. This youth media challenge is aligned with National Dance and California Technical Education standards and provides opportunities for students to practice literacy skills across the curriculum. And this challenge isn’t only for school dance classes!  P.E. classes, dance/cheer clubs, and extracurricular programs are welcome to participate too!

The challenge comes complete with a self-paced guide for students and curricular supports for teachers to set classes up for success.

Want inspiration? Students at Notre Dame High School in San Jose created this dance video collaboration that showcases their artistry and provides a context for the importance of dance to young people’s lives. 


Their dance teacher, Emily King, shared how the challenge connected her students.

This opportunity was a wonderful way to showcase the passion that my students have for their sport, as well as a great way for them to come together to create a unique, communal work of art.”

Jessy Kronenberg, Greater Board Member, of the California Dance Education Association says: 

“The If Schools Could Dance Youth Media Challenge is a unique invitation for young movers of all kinds to show us who they are! The arts have a unique way of making us all feel connected. This dance challenge can help young people connect to themselves and their greater communities through meaningful movement.”

We’ll begin accepting submissions in February, but you can preview the curricular supports and start planning today. 

Want hands-on support for this project? We are hosting a workshop in partnership with the California Dance Education Association on February 11. Register here.


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