When you think of Summertime, what three words come to mind?
Fun, Sun, and oh yeah, Broke!
Well, at least that’s the case for thousands of dance teachers worldwide.
Since most dance studios don’t maintain the same rigorous class schedule during the Summer months that they do during the school year, many dance teachers are left without a steady income for three months, or with a temporary, yet significant decrease in their monthly income.
Dance Teachers, How Can You Avoid Being Broke During The Summer?
Here are 7 tips for securing Summer employment:
1) Plan Ahead. Don’t wait until June, when your recitals are over, and classes have ended to begin looking for Summer work. Start early. Begin contacting your current dance studio employers, as well as other dance studios, arts organizations, and Summer camps, no later than April, regarding teaching Summer dance classes.
2) Maintain Contact with Several Dance Studio Owners Throughout The School Year. It’s always great to stay in touch with previous dance studio, school, or arts organization employers throughout the year, because you never know when an opportunity may arise. Plus, by keeping in touch, you stay in the front of their minds, and when they need a sub, or need to hire teachers for their Summer camp or program, they’ll immediately think of you. Shoot them an e-mail, every couple of months (a video e-mail is even better, and has more of an impact). Let them know what you’re currently doing (where you’re teaching, what classes you’re teaching, if you’re performing, etc.), and let them know what your availability is. Give them a heads up that you’re interested in teaching for them over the Summer if they need you.
3) Apply For Dance Teaching Jobs On A Regular Basis. This is not a question of loyalty or disloyalty to your current dance studio jobs. This is about survival. Dance Teaching jobs are posted online all the time. There’s always a studio that is in need of dance teachers. So you should always be on the look out, and be applying for these jobs. This may sound counter-intuitive, let’s say, if you already have a full teaching schedule during the year. But again, we’re planning ahead, and we’re keeping in contact with potential Summer employers throughout the school year, so that when the Summer rolls around, you have a lot of options, and opportunities to choose from. When applying for these jobs, be upfront about why you’re sending them your headshot and resume. Let them know that, you currently have a full schedule during the school year, but you’re open to subbing at their studio when you’re available, and also interested in teaching during the Summer.
4) Get Help. Ask Your Friends For Contacts. Dance Teachers typically are friends with other dance teachers, so tap into your immediate circle of friends. Ask around to see if any of them know of dance studios or dance camps that are hiring for the Summer. Ask your friends what their plans are, and if they can help you get some work for the Summer. You can also join an online organization for dance teachers, that may be able to help you secure jobs for the Summer.
5) Plan Your Own Intensive. Who says that you can only teach dance classes through another dance studio or dance organization? Rent out some space, and create your own week-long or month-long dance intensive. If you have a strong following, and keep in touch with your students via Facebook or e-mail, and you know the studios where you teach aren’t offering any Summer dance classes, teach your own classes.
6) Be Proactive. Make suggestions for Summer dance workshops to your current dance studio employers, and ask your dance students/parents if they would be interested in taking classes over the Summer. You can even make a list of people that are interested and give it to the studio owner. Sometimes the dance studio owners assume that, because no one wanted to take Summer classes last year, or the year before that, they’re still not interested, so they don’t bother trying to make it happen. But hey, things change. So be proactive, and be helpful to your dance studio owner, and help them make their Summer dance program a success!
7) Network Through Social Media. There are some great groups for dance teachers on Linkedin. You should definitely become a member of them. Keep your Linkedin profile, and other social media profiles updated at all times. Connect with dance studio owners, and arts organizations through Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, and be sure to share your work, and your personal brand as a dance teacher regularly. Build relationships through social media, and you’ll be surprised at how may opportunities you can get to travel, to judge dance competitions, and to teach dance workshops, and master classes.
I just want to reiterate the point about keeping your social media profiles up-to-date. This is so important. People should be able to easily track what you’re doing, what your background and experience are, and see why you would be a great fit for their dance students, through your online profiles. Get some valuable tips for building your personal brand as a dance teacher here.
Do you have any other suggestions for teachers to secure Summer employment? What has worked for you? Were any of these tips helpful?
Please leave your comment below, and share this post on Facebook and Twitter.
Has fear ever held you back in your dance career? If so, read this article.
Learn more about Kiner Enterprises and how we help dance teachers and dance studio owners here.
Join our mailing list today for access to more articles like, “The Top 5 Secrets Every Dance Teacher Should Know To Get Hired”, and “5 Reasons Your Dance Classes Are Not Growing, And How To Overcome Them”.
Post your comment here!