March 2021 Newsletter

Message from Miss Vanessa:

I LOVE MARCH!  I love this month for many reasons – some studio-related, and some personal.

March is my wedding anniversary! We got married during spring break and always make a point to do something special during spring break to celebrate.  At the studio, it’s full-on performance mode! company season is in full swing, costumes arrive for processing and distribution, and recital choreography is shaping up in classes!

Last March, Dan and I drove all the way to O’Hare airport in Chicago for a planned anniversary trip to Europe.  We turned around and came back home when it became clear that international travel was no longer a good idea due to the pandemic.  Instead of the vacation we’d planned, we celebrated our anniversary by getting donuts from Donutland and then working around the clock to figure out a way to transition the dance studio to a virtual operation.  We are still SO proud that our classes didn’t miss a beat – we got all of the technology in place to teach from a distance during our spring break week.

What a YEAR it has been. 

At the one-year anniversary of the shutdown, I am reflecting on the past year, and am so grateful.

I’m reflecting on the ways we had to change EVERYTHING about daily life – and the ways our families did, too. (Pivot turns are a Jazz 1 skill – we NEVER thought we’d hear this building block dance step term used on the news, from government officials & business leaders everywhere!) 

While I’d never choose this situation, I am grateful for the strength we’ve gained from navigating through the challenges.  Our small businesses survived – thanks to the amazing team we have on our studio’s staff (our teachers didn’t sign on to try classroom management with 12 kindergarteners in 12 different houses – but they did it! And they did it so, so well!) and the incredible support we continue to receive from our studio families.  

We celebrate that while we’re not out of this situation yet, we’re seeing positive indications – community numbers decreasing and vaccine availability increasing – and we are just so grateful to be doing what we do, with our people.

One year later, after all of the challenges and changes and pivot turns, we’re still here.  I am so thankful for just that.


Summer Camp Registration is open for the community NOW!

Get a spot in our popular summer camps, and save with early bird pricing when you register before May 1!

Take a look at our camps and get registered here.

We are SO excited about our new subscription box full of unique PSD gear!  Learn more and get yours ordered here:

Our instructors have been working HARD on class evaluations and recommendations for students in Graded Technique classes!  Here’s a little bit about what to expect in the coming weeks with these evaluations, recommendations for summer and next year’s classes!

  • Classes that will receive recommendations by email:
    • All levels (except adults): Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Acro, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Contemporary, Pointe, Teen Technique
  •  Classes that will not receive recommendations:
    • Adult classes
    • Skills & Conditioning (level determined by ballet or jazz level)
    • Dance & Discover 1, 2, 3
    • Hippity Hop
    • Mini Movers
      • These classes progress by age (ages 2-5) rather than completed skills
      • Stay tuned for registration details to get your dancer in these classes into the right classes for summer and fall!

Our instructors take SO MUCH time to complete these detailed recommendations and truly have the best interest of each student’s journey at heart when recommending classes.  A few things to note:

  1. Most students spend an average of two years in every graded technique level (if this is their first year in Level 1, expect to spend one more year there – that is on track!)
  2. In general, dancers who take more classes progress through the curriculum faster.  While dance techniques are very different, they serve each other: musicality learned in tap helps find accents in jazz and hip hop + fast footwork in ballet.  Posture and alignment practiced in ballet help skills in jazz.  Strength and more stretch time in jazz help lyrical and contemporary (we could write books about the ways dance genres work to complement each other!).  Dancers who only take one class per week are more likely to spend more time in each level (and that’s COMPLETELY ok!).  Students in a performing group often accelerate their progress through additional performances throughout the year (have a dancer who LOVES to perform and wants more?  We’ll have a meeting about our performing groups later this month – stay tuned for the details!).
  3. Teachers want students to be in the class with the right amount of challenge.  Not too easy, not too hard, just right.  Student success is the reason behind every recommendation – whether to stay in the same level for another season, or if it’s time to move to the next.
  4. Dance skills are difficult to MASTER – and the essence of dance training is that completing a skill isn’t enough to have it mastered.  In basketball, while there’s the correct form to shoot a basket, if the ball makes it in the hoop, points are given regardless of form.  Dance is completely different.  If a turn is completed without correct positioning from both legs, arms, posture in the back, spotting with the head, staying high on the toes for the full turn, and a clean landing position, it doesn’t get the credit for a completed skill.  
  5. Recommendations are our best evaluation of where the dancer is right now This can change – in fact, some of our most dedicated dancers have made incredible improvements on a few key skills QUICKLY after getting a disappointing recommendation.
    • We will have Goal Setting summer private lesson packages available when the summer schedule comes out – you can get some times with a teacher who specializes in the areas your dancer needs to focus most on to help them reach those goals!
  6. Sometimes, disappointment happens – and we strongly believe that working through disappointment in a safe environment helps our students develop life skills that will serve them well into adulthood.  We are so thankful for the partnership we have with parents and families at the studio to help our students learn and practice these critical life skills!

Recital Practice Music and Videos

Recital choreography is taking shape – and we are SO proud of their progress!  To help dancers keep practicing at home, we have folders with practice music and videos for our families on our “Current Students” page.

PSD Families, check your inbox for emails with the password to access this page (they’re in your Friday FYI emails).  The links to these folders are also available on your Parent Portal.

Instructors update practice videos about every two to three weeks as we add on choreography throughout the season!

Costumes are Coming In!

We have started to pass out costumes during classes for costumes that are in and processed.  They are looking amazing!  Choreography is taking shape, costumes are continuing to come in and get processed… it’s so exciting!

We have some costumes that ship quickly and also have arrival dates through early May.  If your dancer’s class doesn’t receive their costume soon, no worries! There’s always a big range of shipment dates.  This is why we order early – some costumes arrive quickly, others take 4-5 months to be made and shipped to us.

We will email your class before we pass out costumes, so you know what to expect 🙂

Adjusted Front Desk& Boutique Hours

For 2021, we have a change in our Front Desk & Boutique Hours.   We are no longer open on Saturday mornings.  If you need to come in and can’t make it during our hours Monday through Thursday, we can set up appointments for Friday or Saturday as needed.

Front Desk & Boutique Hours:
Monday – Thursday, 4:30-7:00 PM

Makeup Classes: How to Make up an Absence

We know that sometimes, things come up and a dancer may need to miss their class.  No biggie!  Our technology makes it easy for families to communicate an absence in advance so our teachers know.  This also helps us get makeup classes scheduled to take online at home at your convenience.

1 – Know you’ll be gone?  Log an absence through your parent portal.  Log in here: with the same email and password used to register.  It’s quick and easy! (in fact, here’s a 40-second video that shows the process step by step!

2 – Email the front desk to get options for makeup classes.  We’ll reply with Zoom links to access your classes from home on a day and time that is convenient for you!

Of course, making up classes is not required – but many of our families really appreciate the opportunity to get absences made up.

Get Connected!

We believe that we have the most amazing community of families in Cedar Rapids!  While our lobby is closed, introduce yourself and your family in our private Facebook group just for PSD families!

Follow The Pointe on Facebook:
Private group for PSD Families:
Follow The Pointe on Instagram: @thepointeschoolofdance

Where to Find What you Need

We’re at the front desk from 4:30 – 7:00 PM Monday through Thursday.  We’re also available via email: any time!

For the dress code for all classes:
For all policies and important dates:
To shop for awesome PSD gear:

Important Dates Coming Up


12: Graded Technique Evaluations Emailed Home & Summer Class Registration open for currently enrolled PSD Families ONLY
12: Tights & Undergarments Sale Order form emailed home
13 – 19: Spring Break! (no classes, front desk, or boutique hours)
19: Summer Class Registration opens to the community
20: Classes resume on our normal schedule
(stay tuned here for 2021-2022 schedules, registration dates, Performing Group pre-audition meetings, and more!)
25: April tuition and costume auto-pay processed
28: Tights & Undergarments Sale Order due


1: Recital Plans finalized & announced (including dates, shows, dress rehearsals, photos, etc)
2-4: Easter Weekend, Studio Closed (no classes, front desk, or boutique hours)


(details coming soon for recital photos and in-studio dress rehearsal)

June – August

8-10, 13: Dress Rehearsal / Recital (TBD)
14-20: Studio CLOSED – no classes – break between recital and summer!
21: 6-Week Summer Session & Summer Camps Start
2-6: Intensive & Performing Groups Choreography Camp
7: Back to Dance Sale & Open House
15: 2021-2022 school year season starts!