Education/Schools

Bring Fun and Cultural Education into the Classroom through Ajna

Educational Programming for Schools: Assemblies, Workshops, and Residencies

Ajna works extensively with schools (preschool through college) to offer educational programs that are catered to the age of the students and the educational goals of the school. Part of our company mission is to share the experience of dance and culture with students of all ages and backgrounds. Our assemblies, workshops, and residencies introduce students to Indian dance, history, and culture in a way that is fun, detailed, interactive, and relatable.

Assemblies

Ajna’s assemblies are a great way to introduce a large section of students to Indian dance and culture. These 45-60 minute programs include:

  • A professional 7-10 minute performance by 3-4 dancers in full Indian costume
  • An interactive explanation and demonstration of some of the prominent styles of Indian classical (Bharathanatyam & Kathak), folk (Garba, Dandiya, & Bhangra), and film (“Bollywood”) dance, highlighting the significance of storytelling in these art forms. This involves active audience participation in learning facial expressions, hand gestures, basic movements, rhythmic counting, and more.
  • A dance lesson where the students learn a short piece of Bollywood choreography
  • A chance for students to ask questions (depending on the length of the program)

Workshops

Ajna also offers workshops for smaller groups such as individual classes, summer camps, field trips, or after-school programs. These programs allow for a more detailed interaction between an instructor and the students and can vary in focus, depending on the goals of the teacher and school. Past workshops we have done include ones on Bollywood dance, Indian mythology, Diwali, Children’s Day, Indian folk dances, basic movement and musical exploration, and more.

Residencies

Ajna’s long-term residencies are the best way for students to get a truly in-depth experience of Indian dance and culture. Besides learning a piece of Bollywood choreography, students learn in detail about the historical and cultural context of what they are learning. Our residency program includes:

  • An introductory planning meeting between the Ajna instructors, school administrators, and classroom teachers to tailor the sessions to the needs and goals of the students
  • Weekly lessons in the classroom/gym/auditorium. The format for every class include a warm-up and stretch, an introduction to a regional Indian classical or folk dance (including cultural explanation, demonstration, and trial by the students), and on-going instruction on a piece of choreography
  • A performance for the school and/or parents in costume

For more information, booking, or to request a quote please contact us.

A short sample of our partners in education:

  • PS 208
  • PS 253Q
  • PS 87
  • IS 392
  • PS 125
  • PS 266
  • PS 4
  • Bank Street School for Children
  • Success Academy Fort Greene
  • The Brooklyn Friends School
  • The Fieldston School
  • HoLa! Hoboken Dual Language Charter School
  • Lakewood Elementary School
  • Metropolitan Montessori School
  • Thomas Hughes High Elementary School
  • Horace Mann School
  • Wilton High School
  • Allen-Stevenson School
  • World Class Learning Academy
  • Mott Hall Charter School
  • Hommocks Middle School
  • Deerfield School
  • Iona College
  • Hunter College (CUNY)
  • Suffolk Community College
  • Keene State College
  • Ramapo College