Energy Rooms

Elle walks you through a fun creative movement lesson based off of energy and how you display energy in movement.

Warm Up:

What are different activities that we do during the day compared to what we do at night. How do you yawn with your entire body when it wakes up? How is that different when you yawn before you go to bed? How do you collapse into bed at the end of the day? How do you spring out of bed when you had a good night’s sleep? Play with these ideas for a few minutes. If you feel like you need more direction maybe try collapsing and then rising with your entire body, and then isolate the idea to different parts of the body.


What is energy? Energy is how movement happens. Think about the energy you just explored by examining the difference between day and night. When you first woke up were you heavy or light? Can you walk heavy and then try walking lightly? Try having a heavy arm and a light leg and move them around a bit. Now can you take that energy idea and move it in space with an action other than walking? Try hopping on a strong leg while moving your arms lightly.


Here are a list of a few words that describe energy:


Pick 4 or 5 words, then assign each word to a room in the house. It might look like this:

Living room: Tired
Kitchen: Powerful
Bedroom: Excited
Backyard: Calm

Use walking lightly to travel from one room to another. Once you enter a room you can only move with that energy. You could stay in the rooms for a long time, or try moving between them quickly. You could also assign a different level to each room. Imagine the ceiling is a different level in each room too! It might look like this now:

Living room: Tired on the low level
Kitchen: Powerful on the medium level
Bedroom: Excited on the low level
Backyard: Calm on the high level

You can create your own Energy house or follow the one above. This is fun to do with others as maybe you travel together or when one person enters a room the other has to leave.


What other energy words can you think of? What other rooms in your house would be fun to dance around in. Could you create your own energy stations outside? Is there a type of energy that is your favorite and one that isn’t?

Feel free to share these videos, embed them for your students, or link to this page. New online educational resources are being developed every day. If you have suggestions for what you’d like to see let us know:

Elle Johansen, originally from Salt Lake City Utah, began her dance training at the age of 9 with the Janet Gray School in Salt Lake City Utah. There she was disciplined in Ballet, Modern, Jazz, and various forms of African dance. Elle earned her BFA in Modern Dance from the University of Utah in 2015 where she received both the “Outstanding Senior Award” and the “Student Service Award.” Elle has a passion for dance education and is currently a teacher at the Janet Gray School, Tanner Dance at The University of Utah, South Valley Creative Dance, and a teacher with Repertory Dance Theaters AIE program. Throughout her training Elle has had the privilege to work with Hubbard Street, Alvin Ailey, and the Staaliche Balletschule School located in Berlin Germany. Elle has been a guest dancer with RDT since 2015 and officially joined the company in 2017.

RDT appreciates the generous funding provided by the Utah Legislature and the Utah Board of Education that help make our Arts-in-Education Programs possible in Utah’s Public Schools.

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