116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Home / News / Education / K-12 Education
Dancer’s Edge to open a preschool in Hiawatha this fall
3- and 4-year-olds will get academics — and dance — in the half-day program
HIAWATHA — The Dancer’s Edge in Hiawatha is opening a half-day preschool program this fall that incorporates dance with more traditional learning.
The program — called The Early Edge — will operate out of the dance studio’s 30,000-square-foot location at 1550 Hawkeye Dr. in Hiawatha, and will have capacity for 24 kids in its first year.
The director of the program is Tammie Tomash, whose daughter fell in love with dancing at The Dancer’s Edge. Tomash has over 30 years’ experience as an educator in the Linn-Mar Community School District.
“My vision is always to meet every child where they’re at and making sure I do everything I can to help that child succeed,” Tomash said. “I want to make sure every child feels valued and their needs are met.”
Dance will be incorporated in to The Early Edge in addition to traditional preschool academics required by Iowa Early Learning Standards. This includes social and emotional development, math, science, early reading and writing, developing motor skills and learning through play.
The Dancer’s Edge already has a “Tinies” dance program for 3- and 4-year-olds that focuses on the basic fundamentals of dance in a way that keeps students engaged and entertained through games and memory exercises. These same dance lessons will be a part of The Early Edge. In spring 2024, preschool students can participate in either a ballet or tap dance recital.
“The Dancer’s Edge has always been so special for our family,” said Tomash, adding she still goes to dance recitals even though her daughter has graduated from the program.
Tomash said she has filled several boxes being stored in her basement with decorations and activities for The Early Edge classroom.
The program will offer a four-day morning preschool Tuesdays through Fridays from 8:30 to 11:15 a.m. for $495 a month. The afternoon preschool program is three days a week, Tuesday through Thursday from 12:15 to 3 p.m. for $445 a month. The maximum class size is 12 students with two instructors.
The Dancer’s Edge was founded by Charlie and Stephanie Vogl in June 2008. Today, there are about 350 students kids age 6 or younger enrolled in the Tinies dance classes.
Stephanie Vogl said they are designing a new space in The Dancer’s Edge studio for the preschool program, including a bright, new classroom with furniture designed for “little bodies” and dedicated play areas to learn and explore safely.
Students must be at least 3 years old on or before Sept. 1 to enroll.
“Research shows that kids at this age learn best through joyful experiences. Our goal with the program is to have it feel fun and have them leave being ready for kindergarten,” Vogl said.
“As a mom now, I can see how you want to give your child every experience that will help them reach their potential,” she said. “When a student shows an interest in the arts and you watch their face light up with the joy and freedom of moving and dancing, the energy is so contagious.”
For more information about The Early Edge visit theearlyedge.com or call 319-892-4340.
Comments: (319) 398-8411; firstname.lastname@example.org