chapter  21
13 Pages

The role of movement, dynamics and expression in children’s drawings of dancing

WithSusan Wright, Jan Deans

This chapter focuses on 4-year-old’s embodied thinking and the central role of dance-play and drawing-telling as a means for young children’s transmediated meaning-making (visual-spatial-kinaesthetic sign systems). It briefly describes a planning cycle that supports children’s learning through dance (e.g. the physical space, the welcoming ritual, warm-up, practice of skills, improvisation, sharing/performing, relaxing, reflective drawing-telling). It then describes the dance encounter and the role of the teacher in establishing interaction and relationships, developing big ideas and making learning visible, extending upon children’s interests, using metaphoric and descriptive language modelling and props and music as semiotic tools. Examples of children’s learning through dance and provided along with theoretical unpacking of issues such as cross-modal semiosis, mind and body integration, imagination and bodily-spatial reasoning, thinking in symbols, holistic meaning-making, transmediation and implications for teaching.