The Contribution of Dance to Optimizing Motor Skills and Improving the Educational Process in Institutionalized Children

Gabriela Tomescu, Monica-Iulia Stănescu, Kamer-Ainur Aivaz


Institutionalized children represent a risk-factor category from the perspective of social integration. Educational interventions implemented in programs designed for children raised in foster homes verify the effectiveness of complex means of training that could influence their multidimensional development. Among these means, dance has been identified as a way of developing coordination, rhythmicity, motor skills, and spatiotemporal orientation through body movements. Starting from the hypothesis that the systematic participation of institutionalized children in a dance program contributes to the development of their motor skills, an intervention model based on dance content was designed for this study. The purpose of this research is to optimize the motor skills of institutionalized children and to stimulate their bodily-kinesthetic and visual-spatial intelligences. The objectives of the study are to highlight the influence of dance on the development of institutionalized children and to develop the methodological concept regarding the use of dance for institutionalized children at the age of preadolescence. The research was conducted over a nine-month period, with a frequency of two training sessions per week of 60 minutes each, and was based on the consolidation of steps from different dance styles for a group of 29 institutionalized children aged 11-12 years. Testing was carried out using the Optojump device, and the tests applied were aimed at assessing their lower limb power, reaction speed, repetition speed, and spatiotemporal orientation. The motor effects produced indicate positive changes in test values, with all results showing significant differences after nine months of participation in the dance program. The greatest impact is for the displacement point of the March in Place Eyes Closed 30 Seconds test, which reveals an improvement in spatial orientation ability. In conclusion, the participation of institutionalized children in a dance program contributes to the optimization of their motor skills and the stimulation of their bodily-kinesthetic and visual-spatial intelligences, therefore we consider it appropriate to deepen the study of dance as a means of developing multiple intelligences through educational programs implemented in schools.


dance, motor skills, institutionalized children, bodily-kinesthetic intelligence, visual-spatial intelligence

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