Project Description

Program Description
In this program, students will learn South African history, language, culture, songs, and dances.

The Gumboots dance originated in Johannesburg when many migrated from their rural homes to work in urban industries such as mining, which required long hours and paid low wages. Mine workers used their rubber work-boots to communicate on the job when speaking was forbidden, and this system of stomping and slapping evolved into a dance.

The Pantsula dance originated in the streets of Johannesburg in the 1950s and 60s, an expression of black identity and politics in apartheid South Africa. Over time, the dance continued to evolve as an expression of young South Africans’ status, style, and swagger.

Final Product
Students will prepare a small presentation and performance demonstrating what they have learned.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will learn about South African culture, dance, and traditions.
  • Students will work together in dance movement and space awareness.
  • Students will learn to create sound and explore South African music.
  • Students will gain confidence in dance movement and songs.
  • Students will explore South African stories and culture.

Suggested Grades

  • Best suited for 3rd-12th grades.
  • Can be modified for grades K-2.