Dear MDU Family,

Today is a great day! Today, our studio will have a modified opening, an event that our staff and students have been looking forward to for 12 days during our recent voluntary closure to support community health.

We are pleased to share that our Safer Studio™ plans have earned the support of the La Crosse County Health Department which allows us to offer service continuity going forward. What does that mean? It means that means the plans and precautions we have put into place support our ability to hold in-person classes with modifications - even during “red”.

The response to our planning and communication has been overwhelmingly positive and we are pleased to be able to offer you two ways to dance this week:

  1. You can join us for in-person classes, which will be limited to 9 students per class; or
  2. If you are uncomfortable attending in-person classes, you are welcome to learn-at-home with our new live-streamed classes via Zoom. Please check your email for at-home participation zoom links to your classes.
The County has expressed their appreciation for our continued efforts to support community health by offering a variety of ways for students to continue to dance safely. After all, health is not just about avoiding sickness. It’s also about building strong bodies, minds, and hearts - something that happens in each and every class at MDU!

That said, you are probably aware that the number of positive COVID-19 cases in the County has increased significantly in the past few weeks. It probably also goes without saying that we are a school, and schools are going to experience reports of COVID-19 exposure as they welcome back their staff and students. The County has assured me that single reports of exposure risk will not require a studio closure. If the studio receives a report of exposure risk, the reporter will be asked to share with the County, any affected classes will be notified, and exposure-risk level cleaning will be enacted. The County encourages those with exposure risk to self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of potential exposure. MDU has the ability to monitor staff self-quarantine but does not have the capacity to monitor student self-quarantine. As such, parents will be asked to use their own discretion as to their comfortability returning to class or if they would rather participate from home. There is absolutely no penalty for absence and classes may be made up in-person (space permitting) or online (anytime). If the studio receives a cluster report of exposure risk, we will work directly with the County on the next steps.

Thank you MDU Family, for working together to minimize risk, keep our staff and students safe, and keep our studio operational. We continue to follow the highest standards of care and ask you to do the same. For a full list of our re-opening procedures please see attached document.

Thank you again for your support! We appreciate our MDU family every day and we can’t wait to see you this week!

Sincerely,

Misty Lown


COVID-19 Message Archive
  • 923 12th Ave S, STE 103, Onalaska, WI 54650
  • 608.779.4642
  • info@mistysdance.com
  • 923 12th Ave S, STE 103, Onalaska, WI 54650
  • 608.779.4642
  • info@mistysdance.com

Children dance their way to enhanced learning

When we watch our children dance, we see them coordinating limbs, facial expressions, spatial relationships and emotions. We see them bringing a series of movements together, one after another, remembering multiple steps along the way. What we don’t see, however, is the complex processing firing in the brain to make it all possible, and it’s a view that scientists want to examine more closely.

 

The link between dance and higher math and SAT scores is well established, and we’ve written about it here, but more research into the neuroscience behind it is showing dance is as much an exercise for the brain as it is for the body.

 

Scientists have found that dance, particularly, sparks neurogenesis, the growth and development of neurons responsible for carrying information throughout the body. Ongoing dance classes increase neuroplasticity, strengthening existing neurons, creating new information pathways and increasing the brain’s agility. In short, it means that dance classes increase learning ability and capacity along with memory.

 

Some researchers have likened dance to learning another language; it’s just a nonverbal one. The vocabulary exists in gesture and locomotion and the grammar in ways movements are strung together. And just like children who grow up multilingual, dancers gain greater brain plasticity and can multi-task more easily.

 

Bottom line: when we watch our children dance, we are watching them express themselves through another language, one that fuels capacity for learning other subjects and gives them a leg up in dance and in life.

 

As research continues, so too does the evidence for dance’s singular benefits for the whole child: mind, body and spirit.