At Misty’s Dance Unlimited, LLC (MDU) the health and safety of our members’ staff, students, guests, and communities have always been our highest priority;
a commitment that has only been heightened at this time in history. That’s why we have used local and national guidelines to inform our best practices for service continuity and re-opening.

Because dance meets imperative student needs for physical, social, and emotional well being, we are committed to helping our staff and students navigate reopening. We follow the Safer Studio™ standards put forth by our national association, More Than Just Great Dancing!® along with the utmost care and consultation of our local health departments and locally available information.

Governmental Regulations
MDU follows the Governor’s Executive Order #82, which mandates the use of masks inside buildings and advocates the same for clients until Sept. 28. We also adhere to the Governor’s Emergency Order #1, which allows for exceptions.

Education
MDU staff, parents, and dancers are informed about the symptoms of COVID-19 including, fever, cough, shortness of breath, diarrhea (watery), sore throat/congestion, headache, chills, muscle and joint pain (multiple), nausea or vomiting and, loss of sense of smell.

Dancers and staff should STAY HOME if they have any symptoms of COVID-19. They should also notify the studio owners/administrators and contact healthcare providers if they develop symptoms. If in doubt, sit them out.

Return to Training
  1. MDU follows a phased approach to reopening physical services.
  2. MDU’s reopening plan:
    1. Reinforces an attendance policy that does not allow employees to work when sick or students to attend classes when sick.
    2. Reinforces of proper hygiene and health standards with all staff members and students, including frequent handwashing and/or sanitizing, not touching the face, and sneezing and/or coughing into elbows.
    3. Increases frequency of sanitation in high traffic areas and high touch surfaces of the studio such as barres, floors, counters, stereos, and bathrooms/locker areas.
    4. Adjusts studio operations based on public health guidelines and recommendations regarding PPE, assembly/gathering/occupancy size, and social distancing where possible and practical.
    5. Adjusts curriculum and teacher training to reduce or eliminate hand-holding, equipment-sharing, and mingling where possible and practical.
    6. Communicates a clear policy for each phase of opening regarding student drop-off and pick-up, lobby availability, and amenity use.
  3. MDU has a variety of service options available including private instruction, small group instruction, traditional classes, and online instruction where possible and practical, to meet the needs of students and staff as well as for the ability to maintain service continuity in any situation.
  4. MDU has a clear system of communicating the status of classes, such as a “green, yellow, red” protocol. Green indicates it is safe to attend face-to-face classes. Yellow indicates a cautionary change to service delivery. Red indicates clients should stay home and attend class online.
  5. MDU understands that unlike older children and adults, young children cannot be expected to maintain social distancing at all times. Therefore, we focus on a hierarchy of measures beginning with avoiding contact with anyone with symptoms, frequent hand cleaning and good hygiene practices, amplified cleaning, and minimizing contact and mingling.
  6. If MDU receives a report of exposure risk, any affected classes will be notified, and exposure-risk level cleaning will be enacted. There is absolutely no penalty for absence and classes may be made up in-person (space permitting) or online (anytime).

Additional Considerations
As MDU we are proud of the work our team has done since 1999 to create the highest quality experiences and environments for our staff, students, and guests. Because of this groundwork, and the strength of our network, we believe our studio is in a strong position for a gradual and responsibly phased reopening. We are honored to continue to serve our community in this time.

Sincerely,
Misty Lown


Safer Studio Policy 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.