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Scholars Day 2008, Wednesday, April 9

Go Ahead and Tap It!

This paper examines the history of tap dance as an American cultural artifact. It addresses the rich cultural heritage tap dance represents, as well as the history of the United States that it embodies. As a dance form, the dance educational system often overlooks it. Tap, however, can be integrated into several major academic subjects to enhance a studentís comprehension. This paper discusses some of the attributes tap has as an educational tool for other dance forms and academic subjects, in that tap incorporates Howard Gardnerís Multiple Intelligences model by its very nature. The physicality of tap dance clearly speaks to the bodily/kinesthetic learner; the understanding required in terms of musical phrasing and the various tones created by the metal taps is well suited for logical/mathematical and musical/rhythmic learners. Further explorations into Gardnerís model and examples of cross-curricular lessons are detailed throughout the text.

Presenter: Gaelyn Walker (Graduate Student)
Topic: Dance
Location: Hartwell Dance Theater
Time: 11:25 am (Session II)