The Birth of Jazz

Coming from ragtime, jazz was a musical sensation that took over the mind of America through its infectious rhythm and, at the time, shocking, dance moves. People like John Philip Sousa and Chuck Berry have become Icons in America that have lasted all the way until today.

At home, look at different jazz dances and songs and create your own jazz-style dance to teach your friends and family!

Learn New Vocabulary: Ragtime, Rhythm, Swing, Icon

Tool Kit: A device that can use the internet (phone, computer, etc.), Pencils, and paper.


Step 1 Look online for different jazz dances like the Twist and Lindy Hop.

Step 2 Think about the elements of those dances. How do they move their feet? Their arms? Traditional jazz dances were very active, so don’t be afraid to get moving!

Step 3 Write down your moves on some paper so you can teach your friends and family so they can join in the fun too.

Group Activity: Show off your swingin’ moves to your family and friends. The more dancers the merrier!

Extend Your Journey: Dancing is everywhere around us. Feel free to look on YouTube for other dances and songs to keep moving to.