Practicing and stretching at home is so important for a budding young dancer! Once a week in class does the basics; your child learns the basics and correct techniques, but to maintain and gain these abilities they must practice at home. Since the classes for a lot of young dancers only happen once or twice a week, it’s a good idea to encourage your child to go through the steps for memory’s sake as well as stretching to help keep their flexibility from week to week as this builds muscle memory. Take it from someone who has been able to achieve the splits one week, only to be disappointed the next week when I’ve not been able to do it again. Consistent and continual striving for flexibility will gain the best results. Dance is a sport, and just like any other, they get to be the best by training constantly. There are many ways to help your child, firstly by just reminding your child to practice. At this stage, even just going over the exercises without music will help their mind and muscle memory. Secondly, YouTube! YouTube tutorials are a great way to find new stretches and exercises. The third tip is to physically help you child stretch. Maybe you could even stretch WITH your child to help encourage them; get them to teach you!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5Ic4dOwrWA is a great starting point!