West Berkshire Family Life

Yabba Dance Toddler Dance Classes

Yabba Dance classes have recently launched in Newbury for children up to the age of seven. We went along to a class with our two girls and we caught up with Yabba Dance founder Katy Atkins to find out more about the classes and how it all began.

 “I am a mother of 2 and I have lived in Newbury since the summer of 2019, when I moved from South London. I started Yabba Dance in West Norwood after going to lots of different kids’ classes with my eldest and enjoying them but also feeling slightly bored. I wanted to run a class that incorporated both toddler favourites, and an acknowledgment that the adults who were coming also have their own music styles – a class that parents & carers and children could genuinely enjoy together. I also can’t sing, so I’d much rather jump around to Little Mix than sing Baa Baa Black Sheep! 

I have loved dance from a very early age and have been told that I would often dance to the music in adverts before I could walk! I enjoy street, commercial, latin and disco dancing – and trained as a Dance Teacher through the IDTA (International Dance Teachers Assoc.) in 2008. 

I have taught dance classes for adults and children, across Tokyo, London and now Newbury (what a trio!). My regular classes are aimed at the under 5’s, with holiday workshops up to the age of 7 and aren’t geared towards any gender – I deliberately don’t use blue/pink in my logo as dancing is for everyone.

I start the sessions with a kid-friendly warm up, something that they know and are familiar with, or is silly (such as Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes or the Hokey Cokey) to get them moving and hopefully build a bit of confidence. It can be hard coming to a class when you’re 2 and you don’t know anyone! We then move onto learning or copying basic moves to a chorus or song – learning to follow instruction but nothing too hard. After that I give the children a chance to do their own thing, usually handing out ribbons to allow them to express themselves completely. I’m on hand should they feel comfortable copying someone. A lot of the class is the children taking the instructions I have given them and putting their own mark on it. I think it’s great when no one copies me at all but everyone is up and dancing – fabulous!! I hope that the adults enjoy coming too, and feel happy dancing to music that they enjoy with their children. 

I have a mix of songs, such as Pop, Bollywood, Rock, Disney and film favourites (for example in my last class we had The Wiggles, MC Hammer, Raya and The Last Dragon, Hairspray Musical, Pitbull, and the YMCA!)”

We went to a summer session of Yabba Dance with our WBFL three year old and seven year old. Our seven year old loved it, she was dancing and following Katy’s instructions and has asked to go back a few times! Our three year old is slightly more reserved and took a little bit longer to get going, but when the ribbons appeared she came out of her shell and starting joining in with all the moves! The class was great fun and Katy put a lot of energy into it. If you’re looking a fun toddler dance class then we highly recommend it.

Yabba Dance classes take place on Fridays at 10:30-11:30 in The Parish Room at St John’s Church, Newbury. Get an early bird discount if you book a half term pass before 1 December 2021! (Pay £38 instead of £42).

More classes will be launching in the New Year!

You can also book holidays workshops throughout the year:

Christmas to be confirmed soon!

W: www.Yabbadance.com

E: yabbadance@gmail.com

Yabba Dance has joined West Berkshire Family Life as a membership card partner! As a WBFL member, you can enjoy your first class for only £4! (Excludes holiday workshops). For more details of this offer and to apply for your FREE card, visit our membership page.

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