DanceAZ School Residencies

We bring the dance program to YOU!

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Students from partner schools participating in DanceAZ.
About the Program

DanceAZ Residencies let kids explore the world of dance, choreography, and performance all while learning how to be themselves and make friends! Ballet Arizona teaching artists work with partner schools and centers to develop kids’ social and emotional learning skills and 21st Century skills through this program.

Ballet Arizona teaching artists visit partner schools and centers twice a week for 9 weeks and help students develop their Social and Emotional Learning and 21st Century skills through the practice of dance.  Participating students learn the basics of ballet and choreography as they work toward a community performance to showcase what they have accomplished.  During each residency, students learn by active participation, self-discovery, and reflection, which helps them develop new skills, attitudes, and ideas to carry them forward in life.

How Dance Helps

According to a report from the Arizona Arts Education Census Project, in 2010, only 9% of Arizona elementary schools offered dance education to their students.  Of the 263 elementary schools surveyed, that’s only 23 schools! Children stand to gain so much from participation in dance activities.  Countless studies have linked participation in dance and arts engagement to many beneficial outcomes including increased physical ability, coordination, collaborative skills, creativity, imagination, problem-solving skills, critical thinking skills, and much more.  This is due, in part, to dance’s extraordinary ability to facilitate and guide self-awareness.  These skills not only translate to academic success but also continue to serve people throughout their personal and professional careers, and that’s why we believe every student should be able to experience dance in their lives.

Participant Experiences

Alexandra Papazian  Former Education & Community Engagement Manager

“This was my first experience with DanceAZ since I joined Ballet Arizona as an Education and Community Outreach Manager and it was eye-opening to see just how important this program is for Arizona’s children.  The students that participated came from three different grade levels and from different friend groups, ethnicities, and backgrounds; it was truly amazing to witness the power dance has to create community among seemingly unconnected individuals.  They all came together out of a desire to dance, learned to collaborate, think critically, and work together, and created something that reflected and celebrated their individuality.  When we talk about dance and how to measure its value, it’s very hard to quantify with numbers.  For me, the value of dance was made clear in watching this group of students rise to the program’s challenges and flourish together in spite of the differences that can threaten to divide us.”

Teacher, School Partner

“I saw many students who started the program with little confidence and experience with dancing or performing.  Throughout the program, many students gained confidence in their abilities and recognized strengths they didn’t realize they had.”

Teacher, School Partner

“I did see students working together and grow in their ability to work as a team and build relationships with one another.”

Principal, School Partner

“This program has also had a positive result in improving attendance.  The team of students wanted to make sure they remained eligible for participation so they met the school day expectations.”

Teacher, School Partner

“I believe this program can be an important tool in preparing our students to be successful academically, socially, and professionally because of the discipline of ballet.”

Teacher, School Partner

“This program [absolutely] contributes to our goal of educating the whole child.”

Teacher, School Partner

“Our partnership with Ballet Arizona] has been a positive relationship and is appreciated by our school community.”

Teacher, School Partner

“The amount of time, effort, and tender loving care that this program provided the students was above and beyond our expectations.”

Current School Partners

Ballet Arizona partners with Title I Elementary Schools all over the valley. Current school partners are:


Make an Impact

Donors are the heart of our organization. Each instance of support, from donations to volunteering, supports a company of dedicated dancers, dance education and community initiatives all year long. Ready to make a donation?

Join Ballet Arizona for Nutcracker in July!