Journal of
Fine and Studio Art

  • Abbreviation: J. Studio Fine Art
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6524
  • DOI: 10.5897/JFSA
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 16

Full Length Research Paper

Bharatanatyam and Mathematics: Teaching Geometry Through Dance

Iyengar Mukunda Kalpana
  • Iyengar Mukunda Kalpana
  • San Antonio Writing Project (Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching) University of Texas at San Antonio, United States.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 18 August 2015
  •  Accepted: 18 September 2015
  •  Published: 31 October 2015


Bharatanatyam is a highly codified and schematized Asian Indian style of classical dance that accommodates the different kinds of learners. This dance is culturally relevant to Asian Indian American students, but the findings are applicable to students from other demographics that are interested in learning math through dance. Many Asian Indian students learn Bharatanatyam for cultural maintenance and preservation. Dance is also a beneficial medium to teach basic geometric shapes to young children because dance is an engaging art curriculum that can be used in schools.  This mixed methods study informed by categorical content analysis is designed to recommend a framework for exploring how Asian Indian students can learn basic geometric shapes through Bharatanatyam. The study investigates dance movements called adavus, cultural relevance, and integration of elements from dance and geometry and the implementation of alternate strategies such as dance instruction to teach and learn basic geometric shapes. The data analysis revealed the benefits of dance and math integration.


Key words: Asian Indian students, Bharatanatyam, geometry, learning styles, teaching and learning.