If you have not seen the show yourself, you may have heard about the show “Dance Moms.”It is a TV program that highlights a dance studio owner, the talented dancers she coaches (coaching may be a bit of a stretch, yells at and belittles is more like it) and the Mother’s of the girls. Watching it is like watching a train wreck. You want to look away and at the same time you are telling yourself, “This can’t possibly be real”. Let’s face it. It is reality TV and what people do for the camera to get the spotlight is probably not the way they would behave others wise. But like anything, there is some truth to what we see. There must be. It wasn’t too long ago when the cheerleader Mom’s had the spotlight for a while. What lengths they went to getting their daughters a position on their dance teams in Texas.

dance-moms-season-4There is no film crew at your daughter’s dance studio and if you want to make her dance years, positive there are a 2 things you can do to avoid even the implication of being a “dance mom.”

Choose a studio that treats your daughter with respect

When deciding what dance studio your daughter should attend, you need to know what kind of influence her dance instructor will have. A good teacher can instill a love for a subject or an art form. How many stories have you heard about a child who has quite a sport or given up on something due in large part to the coach? Too many. Your daughter’s dance instructor should have positive communication with the students, patience with the dancers as well as a skill, knowledge and experience. If your daughter is complaining that the teacher is not very nice, don’t brush it off as a complaint. A child strengthens and can develop a positive self esteem from the encouragement she receives in dance class!

Be supportive

Play the Game is an organization that works with area elementary school sports programs  and it has a very productive philosophy for coaches, players and parents. It is simply this: Coaches- coach, players-play and parents- support. Problems arise when players try to coach one another, coaches try to parent players and parents try to coach. Same is true for Dance. At the end of a class, your daughter longs to hear you to tell her that you thought she did a great job! As a parent, leaving the critique to the instructor will go a very long way to preserving your relationship with your child. Your child’s focus should be on her instructor. If she sees you trying to tell her what to do from the viewing area, she will miss out on more valuable, professional instruction. No coach or teacher wants to try to compete with parents for the student’s attention. If it’s hard for you to do this, then go to a coffee shop nearby and don’t stay to watch. This is her class. Your daughter and her dance teacher will be grateful!

Being there for our kids is what Mom’s do. We are there for the hurts and the joys. We watch them grow and we help them become who they are meant to be. The hard part is knowing the boundary between being there for them and being too involved. Being a Dance Mom is no picnic. Being a mom has much better perks for both you, your daughter and her dance teacher.