With every sunrise comes the opportunity to create a new and exciting dance performance using inspiration from the outside world. Danika loves to dance, and she wakes each day with the joy that dancing inspires within her. But she does not let her passion distract her from the other chores she must do around the house; instead, she combines the two to create a performance she will not soon forget. Whether waltzing with the vacuum or celebrating nature with the trees and sun outside, Danika embodies the love of dance in everything she does.
Fans of the Once Upon a Dance series are sure to connect with Danika and how the spirit of ballet flows through her. Presented like the other books in the series, every page is subdivided into three sections, including a full-page illustration, the narrative itself, and movement suggestions for readers to follow if they desire. A note from Ballerina Konora at the beginning of the book reinforces the message that all readers can participate in the story and they can do so in whatever way feels best to them. Readers can become comfortable with the story first, engage with everything at once, or focus on the dancing and movement as they improve their own technique. Inclusive in design, the Once Upon a Dance stories connect readers around a shared love of dance and movement.
Realistically rendered, digital illustrations depict Danika in a world of rich color, surrounded by the imaginary circumstances she creates for herself. Blending her true environment with the performance taking place inside her mind, the narrative allows readers to visually experience just how tangible one's imagination can become. French ballet terms appear in blue, italicized font within the narrative to draw attention to these potentially unfamiliar words, adding a layer of connection to the story for older readers. Budding dancers will find a kindred spirit in Danika and will enhance their own understanding of ballet while observing Danika's behavior and practicing their dance technique alongside her.
Overflowing with enthusiasm for ballet, this book is a celebration of all those who live with dance in their souls. Effervescent images of both Danika and Ballerina Konora will inspire children to mirror their movements both while reading the story and after it ends. Though Danika is mostly creating a world inside her mind, her mother makes an appearance at the end and demonstrates a visual representation of love that words alone would not sufficiently express. A glossary of both French language and ballet terms used within the book is found at the end, giving readers the opportunity to better understand Danika's world. This is a delightful and inspiring addition to library collections for young children with a love of ballet.
—Mary Lanni, Librarian Reviewer
Danika’s Dancing Day by Once Upon a Dance is book 12 of the very educational Dance-It-Out! Collection of Creative Movement Stories. I have previously read an earlier story in the series and this one is just as wonderful and fun! Even readers who are not into ballet can find it entertaining, engaging and worth the read.
I just love the beautiful illustrations in the story. They can really help the young readers visualize themselves dancing, learning and having a marvelous time like Danika. Somehow, they also have this calming effect and a sense of magic in them that entices the readers more.
Such illustrations express the story perfectly where the readers are made to see Danika make the most of each day’s task as she practices her dance. Even ordinary household chores become fantastic opportunities to perform her dance movements. Interactions with nature become avenues to broaden her imagination and her sense of appreciation for her chosen craft.
It’s playful and immersive from beginning to end. There is no dull reading moment with Danika who is also joined by Ballerina Konora, the professional ballerina who helps the reader make the most of the story by teaching simple yet practical dancing concepts and methods as one reads along.
This is a highly recommended book for parents and children who want to spend a fabulous time reading, learning and dancing along!
—Reedsy (Jocelyn Soriano)
Best one yet
I have read several of the books from this author and I believe this one to be the best one yet. I loved how the story flowed. Easy to follow story wise and movement wise. The character was very relatable to a child that likes to dance. I loved how she was able to incorporate movement into her daily chores. Great book...
This educational children’s book serves to instruct children on dancing while also delivering a very sweet story. I think it’s cute that Korona creates and demonstrates dance steps for every illustration and story plot whether or not it’s part of a dance. For example, when Danika has had all the fun she can have, she decides to lay down and take a nap. Korona shows readers how to do a sitting spin on the floor before demonstrating how to curl up for a nap.
The illustrations are beautiful and very realistic. Danika’s dress, while dancing with the vacuum, is gorgeous with an almost opalescent glow. All the illustrations are as bright and colorful throughout the book. I especially love the little woodland animals in the backyard. The illustrator has put a great amount of detail into the nature scenes, and every time I look, I spot something new: a bird, chipmunk, a dragonfly, cute little things I love picking out from the landscape.
There are extra dance instructions at the bottom of the page that provide extra content, and value, to the book but I found it hard to understand sometimes. I think that a good audience for this book is children between the ages of five and seven; kids who are likely highly energetic. This is why I think this book is best read with an adult who can read the instructional material that is provided. But older children will easily be able to take the time to learn the steps.
The dance instructions use dance terminology and are accompanied by visuals as well. The story is adorable, and young readers will enjoy the story as parents help them work on their dancing.
The illustration of Danika’s mother is beautiful and wholesome. This book is absolutely charming, and I love how the book serves the double purpose of instructing little kids on how to dance. It makes me wonder if I would have loved dancing more if I read a book like this when I was a kid. I was not lucky enough to have an encouraging dance teacher; however, this book is full of positive, fun-loving vibes and delivers such a beautiful message.