How to DJ a Kids School Dance
Recently, I was booked as the DJ at a daddy/daughter school dance for ages k-8th grade. Admittedly, I had never done a daddy/daughter dance so naturally, I googled, "How to DJ a kids school dance"-hence the title of this post. I wasn't surprised that the info out there was either 1. outdated or 2. super lame and if I followed their track list or suggestions, I'd never get booked again. As a DJ, we take pride in crafting our library and song selection and no party ever really is the same or the same songs should be played so taking that into consideration, I will share below my experience and the set list of songs I played during the night.
The dance from 6:30-8:30 and there was not a set agenda or plan by the coordinator so we had 2 hours to fill with music and games. Yes, games. Not only will the games provide some fun and entertainment but also will take up some time. We only had time for 2 games but here is a short list of what I came up with:
1. Hula hoop contest. Break it down by age groups and choose a winner from each group and call all the winners out at the end and have a final competition.
2. Limbo dance.
3. Dad dance-off: have the kids make a circle in the middle of the dance floor and call the dads out to come in the middle and show off their best moves.
4. Musical chairs. Depends on the size of the group, this could get a little wild.
5. Train song: choose a song and call out to start a train and try to get as many people to join.
6. Freeze dance: Pause the music and have people freeze where they are.
7. Play Mr Roboto and have everyone do their best robot dance.
8. Air guitar contest: have the dads dance at once doing their best air guitar and then choose the top 3 and make a circle around them to have a final dance-off.
There you have it, that's enough games to fill as much time as needed. Call them cheesy but for kids, this is a hit and as a DJ, you'll spend less time looking for that next track and more time playing out a track while the kids have fun.
In conclusion, I"ll include my entire set list that I played that night. I prepared a list beforehand of about 90 tracks that I "would play" based on the vibe and I ended up playing around 45 tracks total.
PRO TIP: this demographic, (young girls) will be request-crazy so be prepared for that. Have a pen and notebook there and show them that you heard their request because I promise you it will get overwhelming with this age range. Most stuff they requested is what I had planned on playing anyways but I was surprised to hear what some of them were requesting--both old and new tracks.
Check out the list below. This isn't the order I played them in, just what was highlighted in Rekordbox at the end of the night.
1. Rolex AYO & TEO
2. Shake it off Taylor Swift
3. High Hopes Panic! At the disco
4. Teach me how to dougie Cali Swag District
5. Sit Still look pretty Daya
6. Boom Clap Charli XCX
7. Wobble Baby V.I.C.
8. Natural Imagine Dragons
9. Feels Calvin Harris
10. Stayin Alive Bee Gees
11. This is how we do it Montell Jordan
12. Let’s get it started The Black Eyed Peas
13. Yeah Usher
14. 24K Magic Bruno Mars
15. Jump around (goodfellas twerk bootleg) House of Pain
16. Gonna Make you Sweat: C&C Music Factory
17. Uptown Funk Mark Ronson ft Bruno Mars
18. Baby Shark
19. New Rules Dua Lipa
20. Blurred Lines Robin Thicke
21. Just Dance Lady Gaga
22. Cha Cha Slide Mr. C
23. Wann be startin something Michael Jackson
24. Promises Calvin Harris Sam Smith
25. Firework Katy Perry
26. Twist and Shout (party bangaz remix)
27. Suavemente Elvis Crespo
28. Starships Nicki Minaj
29. Cupid Shuffle
30. September Earth Wind & Fire
31. Don’t stop the Party Pitbull
32. Hello Martin Solveig
33. Look what you made me do Taylor Swift
34. You spin me around Dead or Alive
35. Gangnam Style PSY
36. PPAP Pen Pineapple Apple Pen
37. Humble Kendrick Lamar
38. C’mon n ride it
39. Whoop there it is
40. Hollywood swinging Kool & the gang
41. Lets groove tonight Earth Wind and Fire
42. Hollywood Michael Buble
43. Thinking out loud Ed Sheeran
44. All of me John Legend
45. Ordinary People John Legend (opened with this)
Got to give it up Marvin Gaye
If you are looking for a DJ in the Northern California region, contact me and let's have some fun.
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