Stress should be on Indian dances to promote our culture
Dance should definitely be a part of the school curriculum but it need not be a compulsory activity imposed upon the students. Especially in case of Indian classical dances, you cannot learn them unless you have interest in them. If a student is not at all interested in classical Indian dance, forcing on them to learn it can become a burden. Rather than making it a compulsory subject it should be an elective, a course that the student can select from among alternatives. A good dance teacher is also very important to encourage students to learn and appreciate Indian dance. Unless students are not encouraged, they feel shy to perform on stage. The school can serve as a very good platform for children to give a stage show, as they don't get opportunity outside. The choices of both Indian classical and western dances should be given to students, however stress should be on Indian dances to promote our national culture. If some students show no interest in Indian classical dances, they should be at least taught to appreciate them.
--Chandana Phadkule, liberal art student & Bharatnatyam dancer
It teaches learners the values of teamwork and fitness in life
I totally agree that Indian dance should be included as subject into school curriculum. From the school that I have come in Kolkata, Indian classical dance was part of school activity till standard VIII. My guru has been Uday Shankar, an Indian dancer and choreographer, best known for his style of creative dance adapting western and Indian classical dance. As per him, dance is an essential part of everyone's life. It teaches the learners the values of teamwork and fitness as a fact of life. Dance imbibes in us basic body postures like chin-out, chin-up, stomach-in, which prevent back problem and help in your gait (how you carry yourself while walking). Dance gives one a sense of aesthetics and a background in classical methodology and mythology of our country. The Indian classical dancers learn the Natya Shaili, as to how it was practiced in ancient India, in a way carrying forward our culture and tradition of dance and art. The understanding and appreciation of our Indian classical dances of our culture is very important part of what we learn, especially in these days when we are just aping the west.
--Sulakshana Sen, assistant professor, Symbiosis School of Liberal Arts
Dance will help students express themselves through movement
Yes, introduction of dance is necessary in schools and as a subject in the curriculum. It will not only enable students to a better orientation of 'dance' as such but will also help them express themselves through movement, which is inborn among us. With the continuos bombarding of reality shows and the fact that most people consider the shown dances as 'classical' ones, there surely is a need to orient students to the real and the rich heritage of Indian classical as well as folk dances. Schools definitely offer the best platform for such an endeavor, as I think both boys and girls should get an equal opportunity to better understand the importance of expression through movement.
--Rashmi Pandkar, Kathak dancer
It is the best workout to help kids do better in their studies
Dance and music therapy involve all three elements i.e. meditation which helps you concentrate and focus on life, yoga which enables your flexibility and exercise which helps you burn calories. Therefore, dance is the best workout that will help children do better in their studies and to adults in relieving stress from their life.
--Sahil Shah, co-founder, SIPA Dance School
Aggression among children can be tackled successfully
Classical dance is one of the oldest media to show your stories and expressions and it is our country's heritage. We should have special plans for enriching our culture. I want all schools to have special classical dance classes everyday so that children can relax from learning pressure, and are able to learn and enjoy their dance culture. Growing incidents of aggression among children can be successfully tackled with the help of dance. Children have ample of energy and if there is no constructive outlet for the same, it results in negative use of this energy.
--Suchitra Date, director, Nritya Prerana School of Dance
Dance made me understand the beats and rhythm of any music
When I was a kid, I practiced Kathak dance for eight years and because of it I could understand the beats and rhythm of any music. Practice in that tender age makes it easy to grasp the beats in any other dance type also. Therefore, it should be added in the school curriculum.
--Abhilasha Chowdhary, founder, Naach Cafe dance classes
It will allow a growing child to be independent and creative
Dance should be included in the school curriculum because it allows a child to think more. It can be an important part of the education system which will allow a growing child to be independent and creative. Dance pushes the child's confidence level. I started out as a classical Kathak dancer and holds a very high opinion for classical style of dancing. Classical dance is all about logic and mathematics but it has been taken for granted of late. If it is included in schools, it will expose young children to our art history, keeping our Indianness alive. It is important to note that without classical dance there would never have been a Pandit Ravi Shankar.
--Hrishikesh Pawar, artist director, Centre of Contemporary Dance
Dance should be included in curriculum as it is part of life
It is wonderful if classical or for that matter any kind of movement with music is included in the school curriculum, as dance should be a part of life. Most classical forms like religion, come from temples and it is a form of worship. Being a Bollywood dancer, there are actually a lot of classical dance forms that can be incorporated into Bollywood. This idea is also gradually picking up in Pune.
--Justine Bhatt, director, Justine's Dance Academy
It can be good idea towards progress of dance in Pune
It will be a good initiative to include dance learning in school curriculum. Classical dance can form a strong base for children to explore their creative dancing side. The only drawback would be that most people who get into classical dance would not get a broader view or opinion about other dance forms like Bollywood and hip-hop. They are usually under the impression that a person who does Bollywood, should stick to Bollywood itself but if these views change, then it will be a very good idea towards progress of dance in Pune.
--Aziza Degwekar, founder & choreographer, Stepz Studio