After school on Monday and Wednesday as well as Saturday mornings, Junior Keeley Seymour teaches dance at the Wayne C. Papy Center also known as Tampa Gymnastics and Dance.
Seymour has been dancing since she was two years old when her mom put her in dance classes at the gymnastics and dance studio her mom worked at but she didn’t start teaching till recently. She teaches a variety of dance styles such as Hip Hop, Ballet, and Tap dance to a range of age levels with her youngest students being preschoolers and her oldest students being high schoolers.
Through teaching, she has learned several lessons from her classes of about 10 students, the most important being how to keep her students engaged and maintain their attention. She does this by playing upbeat music, keeping things short, having fun breaks, and having candy or stamps as incentives, and offering a fun game such as musical four square at the end of class if the students were on task.
“My favorite part of teaching dance is when I get to see the kids perform on stage it’s so rewarding to see all the work they have put in and see how much they have achieved,” Seymour said.
The Wayne C. Papy Center has a show in October and a show in December meaning her students have about a month and a half to learn their dance and work on their skills during class. Following those two performances is recital season which Seymour describes as a big commitment in which the students will further their skills and learn one to two dances depending on the class they take from January to June.
Aside from the recitals Seymour enjoys the daily lessons partly because of the outlandish questions she sometimes gets from her students. For example she has been asked if she has been to jail or if she was planning on going bald.
While Seymour plans on continuing to teach dance throughout high school and plans on working her way up in the dance industry she is unsure if being a dance teacher will be her final career choice but hopes to keep dance in her life regardless.