Wilde Lake Wins Second in the Bright Minds Dance Competition

Bryan Castillo, Photographer

At the end of the school day, many teachers walk towards the dance room. As they make their way towards it, the music gets louder and louder. Past the band room and guitar room, to their right is the dance room. Opening the door, Ms. Estabrook is at the front of the dance room dancing to The Newsies soundtrack.

Once in the room they change into different shoes and start dancing. One and two and… The music starts, and Estabrook begins to dance. The teachers follow her every step. After being the teachers all day, now they’re the students.

All the teachers were there for one reason: to raise money for students who lack necessary school supplies. Teachers from all over the county rehearsed to compete in the Bright Minds’ Dance competition on March 22.

It was the organization’s third annual competition. Bright Minds’ dance competition is an opportunity for teachers to raise money and also have fun.

Bright Minds is a non-profit organization that provides scholarships, school supplies, computers and more to students in need. For the past three years, Howard County school staff have held an annual dance competition which raises money through donations and voting for teams. The audience is able to vote off their phones. Each vote is one dollar.

Social Studies teacher Ms. Startt, one of the teachers who participates in the Bright Minds Dance program, feels that the program is a great opportunity, and this year she helped convince Ms. Neubauer to come dance.

Neubauer says she’s happy that she joined. “I like to get out of my comfort zone,” she said. “It’s fun to be the student sometimes since I’m teaching all the time.”

Practices took place on Wednesdays and Thursdays after school. The teachers rehearsed the dance parts with or without partners.

Startt and others have tried to get more teachers to join the program. Last school year they only had nine teachers who participated. This year there were 24.

Neubauer went through the steps of the dances independently with her partner, Aime Sheinhorn, who has been dancing since she was younger.

Last year, Sheinhorn didn’t have enough time to participate since she was helping with the school yearbook. This year, she was happy to participate in the program.

Last night, Wilde Lake placed in the dance competition, second only to Homewood. “This was the best year yet. We had a lot of staff involvement. I was happy to be able to take home a trophy on our home turf,” said English teacher Mr. Townsend.