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Old 01-04-2009, 02:18 PM - Thread Starter
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One of my dd's friends (age 6) is taught by her older sister to dance like Britney Spears because she thinks that it is funny. Another one of her friends from camp last summer also likes to bump and grind when she dances. Is it normal to teach a little girl to dance like that? What is your opinion on this?
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:02 PM
 
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Yes, unfortunately, it's considered "normal" these days. My stepdaughter had a dance show for all the parents at her camp this summer and they danced like that. They were a group of 6, 7 and 8 year olds.

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Old 01-05-2009, 04:12 PM
 
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I don't know if it's normal or not, but I don't see the big deal. It's just dancing - it doesn't have any sexual meaning to a young child.

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Old 01-06-2009, 12:41 AM
 
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I know you don't mean this to be funny but have you ever seen Britney Spears dance? She's horrible!
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Old 01-06-2009, 12:43 AM
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It is certainly not normal in the crowd my dd hangs out with. Nor the parents.

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Old 01-06-2009, 12:46 AM
 
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I put DD in dance classes when she was around 4. While they were in their class, I would look in on some of the others, b/c it disrupted DD for me to be there. One class was EXACTLY what you were talking about (6-8 yos), and it disgusted me. I pulled DD out shortly after that, that is NOT what I wanted her graduating to. I think that kids today are way to oversexualized anyway, and acting like it's cute only adds to the problem.

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Old 01-06-2009, 03:27 AM
 
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Old 01-06-2009, 03:40 AM
 
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I think that type of dancing (Britney Spears, Pussy Cat Dolls, etc.) is rather vulgar. But I'm getting quite old fogey-ish.
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Old 01-06-2009, 03:44 AM
 
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I think that kids today are way to over sexualized anyway, and acting like it's cute only adds to the problem.
I agree

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Old 01-06-2009, 03:28 PM
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It's just dancing - it doesn't have any sexual meaning to a young child.
Then why do it?

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Old 01-06-2009, 03:35 PM
 
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Then why do it?
Because dancing is fun?
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Old 01-06-2009, 05:20 PM
 
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Dancing is an expression. And I find that the way a college kid dances should be different than the way a child dances and every form of age-appropriate expression in between.

But maybe I'm just old ;-)

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Old 01-06-2009, 06:21 PM
 
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I put DD in dance classes when she was around 4. While they were in their class, I would look in on some of the others, b/c it disrupted DD for me to be there. One class was EXACTLY what you were talking about (6-8 yos), and it disgusted me. I pulled DD out shortly after that, that is NOT what I wanted her graduating to. I think that kids today are way to oversexualized anyway, and acting like it's cute only adds to the problem.
ITA

I used to hang out with a group of people who were mostly single without kids, but one of the guys was divorced with a 4 year old daughter. Someone had taught her to dance like a stripper, right down to balancing on a kiddie chair with one foot on the front of the seat and one foot on the top of the backrest and riding it down as it tips over, then gyrating around the chair in a very suggestive manner. No way she learned that in just a few minutes, someone spent time teaching her.

Everyone thought it was so funny except for me and one other woman, and we were both appalled. Ew. And we were the weird ones.

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Old 01-06-2009, 07:37 PM
 
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Then why do it?
Any number of reasons . . . should we really be grilling our kids on their motives for inconsequential things? Dancing is fun, they're imitating teens/adults that they like (and sorry, but being a sexual being doesn't make someone a bad role model), and it's harmless. Moving, dancing, and being active are all good things!

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Old 01-08-2009, 04:52 PM
 
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My own daughter loves to dance, and does so frequently. She has a radio, a mirror, and occasionally friends in there having a great time. I want her to be comfortable with her body. I don't think she quite understands the sexual implications as a 9yo, but maybe I don't give her enough credit. Either way, she's having fun and moving. I've never seen her doing anything overtly sexual. Keeping in mind that women's bodies are curvy and suggestive no matter what we do, I think it could be easy to take something innocent out of context, as well as to ignore something serious. It's a fine line. As a parent you should go with your gut. I want my daughter to grow into a woman comfortable with herself, her curves, and how to move them. I just want her to do it in her own way in her own time. I have no doubt it'll become more suggestive as she enters the teen years, but isn't that the point of those years? No that it makes it ok, but I remember how I was at 15, 16, etc.I just hope I will be able to give her the honesty and guidance I was denied.
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Old 01-17-2009, 02:06 PM
 
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I'm sorry, but I don't see anything wrong with them dancing that way. Yes, it is perfectly normal and many young girls do dance that way and are taught to dance that way. I say let them dance however they want !
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Old 01-17-2009, 02:30 PM
 
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I see nothing wrong with it. I have 2 girls and they both dance like that. I am not sure where they picked it up from maybe many places and people maybe me. At first it really bothered me (my issues were the ones that needed to be addressed) but I think it's innocent behavior and I do not want to shame them for expressing their beautiful self so I have gotten use to it and just go with it. Dancing is free and thats just how it should be free from any judgements.
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Old 01-17-2009, 04:06 PM
 
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I have issues with it.....
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Old 01-17-2009, 04:14 PM
 
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Ugh, I hate it. I don't have girls but I just don't understand why people think it's cute and funny to see little ones dancing like strippers. Often to nasty, vulgar music, too.

I get that little kids don't understand that what they are doing appears sexual. That doesn't make it okay.

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Old 01-17-2009, 04:18 PM
 
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Then why do it?
Because dancing is fun?
I think it's not the dancing part, but HOW they're being taught to dance. We danced when we were kids, but never in all the suggestive, oversexualized ways 6 yr old girls dance nowadays.

Kids can dance all they want, but why do they have to look like a stripper w/clothes on?
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Old 01-17-2009, 04:23 PM
 
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Ugh. I'm shuddering at all the comments that this is normal and acceptable.
Maybe it is normal, but it's really frightening. It brings me back to elementary school when a boy touched himself in front of me (directed at me) and I was told he wanted to "do the Michael Jackson to me". Where did he learn that move? Michael Jackson's lovely tv moves.
I realize this is a bit different, but it's along the same lines. Dancing like Britney Spears is very sexual, and I don't think it's appropriate at all. I would bring it up in a way that would not make them feel badly about it, but I'd just explain that it's not appropriate to dance that way, even for Britney Spears.

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Old 01-17-2009, 04:41 PM
 
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Ugh, I hate it. I don't have girls but I just don't understand why people think it's cute and funny to see little ones dancing like strippers. Often to nasty, vulgar music, too.

I get that little kids don't understand that what they are doing appears sexual. That doesn't make it okay.
NAK

I'm quoting myself and thinking that I need to lighten up a little. Why do I always have such negative knee-jerk reactions to topics of sexuality? I sound like an old grandma sometimes.

That said, I still don't like the idea of little girls dancing in a provocative way if they are taught to do so, or learn it from tv. Things like bump and grind, or the stripper chair dance a PP described (shudder) are definitely outside the bounds of what I would call okay.

What other PP's have described, their girls dancing in natural sensual ways of their own invention, I don't have a problem with that, regardless of what it may look like to an adult observer. I agree that as girls grow, they are learning about their own future sexuality long before they will actually use it. There's nothing wrong with that.

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Old 01-18-2009, 02:01 PM
 
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I think it's not the dancing part, but HOW they're being taught to dance. We danced when we were kids, but never in all the suggestive, oversexualized ways 6 yr old girls dance nowadays.

Kids can dance all they want, but why do they have to look like a stripper w/clothes on?
Yeah. I find this disturbing on so many levels. Absolutely unneccesary.

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Old 01-18-2009, 02:24 PM
 
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Yeah. I find this disturbing on so many levels. Absolutely unneccesary.
Yeah, that's EXACTLY what I mean by taught behavior. An adult had to teach her every single one of those moves, and that is disturbing. I don't understand why people think that is cute.

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Old 01-18-2009, 09:33 PM
 
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http://www.amazon.com/So-Sexy-Soon-S.../dp/0345505069


"So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids" by Diane Levin and Jean Kilbourne

A great book for helping sort these important issues, and realizing it's never too soon to start addressing them.

(Jean Kilbourne also wrote "Can't Buy My Love-- How Advertising changes the way we think and feel" and "Deadly Persuasion-- Why Women and Girls Must Fight The Addictive Power of Advertising".)
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:40 PM
 
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I think it's disgraceful and sad. I have very strong feelings about premature sexualization of children and young teens... I consider it sexual abuse even when it percolates among peers.

You can call me a fuddy duddy but those are my very strong feelings. My girls do this a little bit here and there, they call it "acting like a teenager." I tell them, "You can't act like a teenager.... even when you ARE a teenager!!!" which always makes them laugh hysterically, and they cut it out.

As to "why they do it:" first and foremost peer pressure, and (related to peer pressure) admiring famous girls and young women (Hannah Montana, etc.) whom they see as being beautiful and they naturally want to copy it.
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:50 PM
 
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an adult had to teach her every single one of those moves
Exactly. This is why the dancing is not an expression of her sexuality, but rather an expression of adult sexuality that she is mimicking.

When I was in Ghana, everyone danced, and dancing was a part of the transmission of culture. We transmit culture through dance here, too. It's just an impoverished, gaudy, oversexed culture. And even if you don't agree with my assessment of the pop culture, you're naive if you think something meaningful and potentially consequential isn't being passed on through the preteen bump-and-grind.

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Old 01-19-2009, 12:32 PM
 
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Exactly. This is why the dancing is not an expression of her sexuality, but rather an expression of adult sexuality that she is mimicking.

When I was in Ghana, everyone danced, and dancing was a part of the transmission of culture. We transmit culture through dance here, too. It's just an impoverished, gaudy, oversexed culture. And even if you don't agree with my assessment of the pop culture, you're naive if you think something meaningful and potentially consequential isn't being passed on through the preteen bump-and-grind.
Nicely put-- thank you. Got me thinking about the different vibe of sexuality in various forms of international dance.
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Old 01-19-2009, 01:03 PM
 
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this thread makes me think of the Little Miss Sunshine movie-- which really touches on this issue IMO (and is a great film). I see nothing wrong with children expressing themselves through movement and /or dance in whatever way it emerges. However, I do think there is a huge difference between self-expression and being taught a routine that is overty sexual (and I include children imitaing dancers such as Britney in that.) I'd even go as far as to say that these routines might even interfere with true self- expression (just a theory.)

I think it's disturbing how sexualised children are in general in our "culture" and I am striving to find/create a community/ lifestyle that is different...

Zoe, mama to Thomas 1/06
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Old 01-19-2009, 05:48 PM
 
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I teach 4th grade and we had to tell the girls to stop spinning on the poles b/c they looked like they were spinning on stripper poles. Because MOST of the girls were just haveing fun but a couple of them were obviously modeling something they had seen/learned elsewhere, we had to tell them to all stop. A couple of the girls were doing very provocative things- I don't know where they learned it, but it's not appropriate to dance sexy at school- they might not know it, but the older kids do and it could cause problems.

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