A graduate of Santa Cruz University, Dance Major,  Chessa Piker-Ward has been studying dance for the past twelve years in the styles of ballet, Hip Hop, modern, Samba and African dance.  For the past seven years Chessa’s main focus has been teaching dance to preschool age children with organizations such as; Mariposa’s Art, Dance Mission Theater and Project Avery. 

With an educational background in Early Childhood Education, Chessa understands the positive effect dance has on both cognitive and physical development in small children. 
"The benefits of dance and movement in the early years

Physical Development
• Increased body control, co-ordination, flexibility and balance
• Development of spatial awareness
• Gross motor and fine motor development

Creative Development
• Non-verbal communication – an outlet to express ideas, thoughts and feelings
• Imagination and creativity to develop ideas, characters and narratives

Personal, Social and Emotional Development
• Having an enjoyable, exciting and motivating time
• Learning to working individually and cooperatively with a partner and as part of a group
• Trust and co-operation
• Exploring feelings and views of self and others
• Increased confidence and self-esteem that will be needed for the day.

Chessa’s goal in working with the Golden Gate Guppies Preschool is to provide the children with a positive, structured outlet for physical release while gaining awareness and appreciation of oneself and others through movement and dance.