Chelsea Branch » Ms. Branch's Biography

Ms. Branch's Biography

Chelsea Branch is from Fort Wayne, Indiana. She attended Hope College in Holland, MI and graduated with a BA in Dance Education K-12 and a minor in English Education. Chelsea worked at Hamilton Elementary School as the dance and yoga teacher. During her years at Hamilton, she designed and implemented a PK-8 dance curriculum centered around National Arts Standards that created opportunities for student creativity and voices. Chelsea worked closely with classroom teachers to build arts integrated units in literacy, math, and science. Additionally, she assisted in leading SEL initiatives that greatly improved the climate and culture for students. Mindfulness is a core value in Chelsea‘s work with students and she was trained by Mindful Schools. Chelsea is passionate about sharing yoga and is certified in Yoga Calm, Rainbow Kids Yoga, and became a RYT 200 yoga teacher through Marianne Wells Yoga School in Costa Rica. 

In her free time, Chelsea loves to read fiction and memoirs, cook (although she’s not very skilled yet), and is a professional dancer and choreographer. Chelsea co-owns The Rooted Space, a dance studio in North Center and serves as the Kids' Business Coach for Guppy Tank, a grant and mentorship program for young entrepreneurs.  



Third graders started a choreographic project based on Dr. Suess' "My Many Colored Days." Students chose the color they wanted to use and will use text evidence and illustrations to build a dance. 
The fourth grade class is starting on our newest project, "The Yellow Umbrella." We are using the wordless picture book by Dong II Sheen and the classical music that accompanies it to choreograph dances. We can't wait to share with an audience soon! Pictured here is the group who will choreograph the dance using the painting photographed with them. 
Second graders met with their groups for their first time to start dances for the arts integrated unit with science and dance centered on seedlings. We built community in our groups by playing the game, "Human Knot." Then we came up with items we learned about teamwork with our group members. This is the list that we created and will build on throughout our unit. Good work, 2nd graders! 
Fifth graders started a Modern dance unit last week. One of the first skills we started working on is flocking, an improvisational technique where students try to move as a group and pass leadership without communicating verbally. It was a huge challenge but we did a great job and will keep working on those listening skills next week. 
Decatur's new art logo is found all around the building these days! I spotted this one on the back of a Crew shirts this week! Thanks to our Decatur parent, Jodie Resendiz! 
Our first graders started a brand new Ballet unit! We learned about the five positions of the feet and had a chance to practice those positions with some visual aids. We all felt very comfortable with first and second positions and loved the challenge of third, fourth, and fifth! 
Sixth grade started learning about mindfulness in our unit using the Mindful Schools curriculum. Students reported feeling "happy," "relaxed," and "rejuvenated" after our first class! 
Our first graders are working hard to perfect their tap dance moves! We can't wait to show you all of our shuffles, digs, and hard work! See you at the winter show. Click here for tickets to the show on January 30th and 31st. 
6th Grade Peforming
This week in dance class, the 6th grade classes wrapped up their Contemporary dance unit by presenting their class-choreographed dances to Roland Fuente's "Hand Over Hand." During the last four lessons of the unit, each class has been making choreographic choices that best communicate how communities come together to support each other. After they performed for each other, they compared and contrasted the dances by using sentence starters, discussion questions, or a Venn diagram. Good work on your dances, 6th graders! 
Kalapriya dance
Kalapriya Dance visited Decatur's 1st-4th graders on Friday, November 16th to educate the students about Classical and Folk Indian dance. The students had the opportunity to see a performance by professional dancers in amazing costumes and learn Indian dance.

Dance Ensemble Auditions

I was incredibly inspired by over forty students who auditioned for this year's winter show Dance Ensemble. Every student did an amazing job at the audition and their hard work was evident. Great work, Decatur dance students!