Kenwood Dance Program Grows and Teaches Students Life Long Social Emotional Coping Strategies


Kenwood’s Dance Performers ready to perform for an audience this school year.

Riley May

Kenwood’s new dance program can provide students with new ways to manage stressful situations, while exploring their creativity. One of the goals of the program is to teach students life long social emotional strategies.

The dance program went from a part time last school year to a full time program this year.  The class is taught by Ms. Ferrigno in room 10. Though the program was online mostly last year, Ms Ferrigno shares, “We worked hard to make the program visible even while at home.  This was able to attract more students.  The guidance office and administrators were also very vocal in the promotion of the program.”

Students working on some new moves.

There are just under 100 dancers this school year, mainly made up of freshmen and sophomores, but also a few juniors and seniors. This class allows students to adjust to working with others, as well as adjust to possible stressful situations they may come across. Kenwood’s principal, Mr. Powell, a supporter of adding the program to Kenwood adds, “Dance is an activity that allows students to focus on the craft and performance and not think about other items that may be on their mind. Our dance program is very inclusive and open for students who are interested in dance and performing. Just like sports, writing, or any other types of activities people engage in, dance can be an outlet for anyone and become a true passion for them.”

Dance students getting instruction from Ms. Ferringo.

This class is a very good, interactive way for students to manage themselves through tough situations. It also helps students explore their creativity and discussion making skills. “This helps prepare students to handle situations that may cause high levels of stress and frustration. It also helps students make informed decisions and respect others’ opinions and ideas,” Ms. Ferrigno says.

Dance is an activity that can help spark students creativity without them focusing on whatever else may be on their mind. The dance program, like other activities and opportunities the school provides, does not just conform to one specific group of students, anyone is welcome to join. It is an excellent way for students to have an outlet as well as discover a newfound passion.

Life itself is going to create stress on people, and some people will react differently than others.
This class is a great way for students to learn how to manage it in a better way. Sometimes you
just have to work through it, and that’s just what they do. Mason Hines, a junior in her 1A shares, “We focus on individual styles and combinations to combine with others in order to have a better understanding of each other’s views.”

This year’s dance students excited to be in the class.

The hope for next year is there will be a Dance 1, Dance 2 and Dance 3 for the students who are moving onto the next level of dance courses. The class was made due to student interest, both MRMS and SRMS have dance programs, and students were wanting to continue with dance when they came to Kenwood. Not only do Kenwood dance students have so many perfomances per year but they’ve also had the opportunity to travel to CCBC to participate in a master class and watch a college level show.

The course provides so many opportunities for the students. As Mr. Powell says, “The dance program also gives us another great opportunity to showcase our students and their talents.” So if you didn’t catch their performance of Micheal Jackson’s Thriller during the halftime show of the Bluebird’s Homecoming football game you can see them perform Friday, Dec 17 here at KHS at 6:30.