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Afterschool Lesson Plan Database

Lesson Plan

Dance: Emotions in Motion
Subject: Art
Grade span: K to 3
Duration: 45-60 minutes
This lesson was excerpted from the Afterschool Training Toolkit under the promising practice: Expressing Yourself Through the Arts


This lesson is one example of how you can implement the practice of Expressing Yourself Through the Arts. Using basic concepts of dance, students will create dance phrases that depict various emotions.

Learning Goals:



  1. Review some basic elements of dance so that you feel familiar enough to demonstrate them to your students:
    • Level: high, medium, and low
    • Direction: forward, backward, left, right, diagonally, turning
    • Speed: fast, slow
    • Locomotor: walk, run, hop, jump, leap, gallop, slide, skip
    • Axial: bend, twist, stretch, swing
  2. You may want to do some additional research on traditional folk dances and their meanings to share with your students.

What to Do:

Evaluate (Outcomes to look for):

Click this link to see additional learning goals, grade-level benchmarks, and standards covered in this lesson.

Online Training for Afterschool Staff
The Afterschool Training Toolkit is available online free of charge.

The following resources can be used with the online Afterschool Training Toolkit to give you the resources you need to build fun, innovative, and academically enriching afterschool activities.