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Cheer & Dance General Information

Updated Thursday October 12, 2017 by Julie Marcus.

Our cheer and dance program has been a proud part of the Colts organization since 1972. In addition to teaching our athletes the fundamental skills, we strive to teach good sportsmanship, respect for ourselves and our team members and provide positive coaching and encouragement in a fun, friendly and safe environment.

Our season begins in Mid July with "Technique Week" that will run Monday – Thursday of that week.  Athletes in grades K – 3 will practice from 6-7pm, while 4th – 8th graders will practice from 6-8pm.  This first week of practice allows the girls a chance to bond with their team, learn sideline cheers, safe stunting, and dance techniques.  More details will be given as the season nears.

Practices may be adjusted at the discretion of the squad’s coach and directors.  Additional practices could be added during the summer before schools starts and in the weeks leading up to competition for preparation.  Every effort will be made to keep indoor practice consistent with outdoor practice days and times.  Our younger athletes will be scheduled for the earlier time slots (5-8pm) while JV and Varsity levels will be scheduled for the later time slots (7-9pm) but can be subject to change to an earlier time slot. Typically athletes will practice as follows:

K – 3rd Grade                                      1 - 1.5 hours/2 days per week

4th - 6th Grade                                     1.5 – 2 hours/2 days per week

7th – 8th Grade                                    2 hours/3 days per week

The safety of our Cheerleaders and Dancers are our number one priority. We are not a gym and do not teach tumbling, but rather work with your athlete to encourage and enhance skill building whether they tumble or not.  We may sponsor or provide instructional tumbling opportunities with local accredited gyms, but it is not required, nor is tumbling a requirement for any cheer/dance team.   A cheerleader may only practice a tumbling technique that has been perfected at a gym or at home.  Stunting progressions will also be followed.  All stunts and tumbling need to be performed on the grass or on a mat with a junior coach or parent coach present.  Also, strict drop off and pickup guidelines for all ages will be enforced. 

Attendance plays a big role in cheerleading, dance, and team building.  Cheerleading and Dance utilize every athlete on their squad.  When an athlete is not at practice it affects their entire team, especially their stunt group.  Please be considerate of the effect your child’s absence has on the rest of their teammates.   During the month of July and August, we understand that many families take vacations but please understand that these are important practices for team building, conditioning and learning their competition routine.  Please communicate in advance with your coach when you will be planning such vacations. Excused absences are illness, pre-planned vacations, school and religious activities, and family crisis. 

Cheerleaders and dancers may have up to three (3) unexcused absences once school begins and still participate in competition.  Athletes that have more than three (3) unexcused absences will not be able to compete until the athlete has explained in writing why she missed practice/games and has gotten the approval of the Director of Cheer and Dance to participate in competition.

             Cheer Squads*                                          Dance Squads*

Mascot - Kindergarten and First Grade                   Mascot – First Grade     

Bantam - Second                                                    Bantam – Second Grade

Jr. Pee Wee – Third Grade                                     Jr. Pee Wee - Third Grade

Pee Wee - Fourth Grade                                         Pee Wee – Fourth Grade

Featherweight - Fifth Grade                                    Featherweight - Fifth Grade

Junior Varsity - Sixth Grade                                    Junior Varsity - Sixth Grade

Varsity - Seventh and Eighth Grade                        Varsity - Seventh/Eighth Grade

*Depending on the number of girls who register in any particular grade, squads may be combined or split to ensure a successful team.

Athletes are placed on a team based on their grade in school.  Some grades may be combined to form a full team.  Final team placements will not be available until after the Colts open registration period.

All practices will be held outdoors/indoors at one of the following locations – D46 schools, D127 High Schools, Gymnastic Factory or Aquatic field.  Typically athletes will practice as follows:

                                        K – 3rd Grade                                      1 - 1.5 hours/2 days per week

4th - 6th Grade                                     1.5 – 2 hours/2 days per week

7th – 8th Grade                                    2 hours/3 days per week

WE ARE A TRAVELING ORGANIZATION therefore our squads will cheer and dance for our Grayslake Colts Football teams at home and away games.  Games are played on either Saturdays or Sundays late August through November.  Football game schedules are established by the Chicago Youth Football League (TCYFL).  We ask for your patience, as scheduling all of the games is a very difficult process for the TCYFL; it requires a lot of coordination and takes time.

Cheerleading squads will cheer the entire home or away football game which may include overtime and perform a half time routine.  Mascots will typically cheer for an entire Flyweights game, or through halftime on a regular game.

Dance Teams will arrive prior to their scheduled game and perform a half time routine during their scheduled home or away football game.

We look forward to another award-winning season and are excited to work with your child!