The first question to ask yourself, or if old enough the student attending, is what you want to get out of going to dance class.? Do you want a fun class to make some friends and keep a little healthy or is this going to be a career you want to pursue? There are schools for both categories and plenty in between.
If you are looking into dance as a career expect to be doing a number hours per week in a few different styles. For a general dancer this would properly be Ballet, Tap and Jazz although if you are looking at going professional in one style the majority of your classes would be centred around that with a few cross-training classes as well. For example a student wanting to work in ballet full time would benefit from ballet, yoga, contemporary and Pilates to name a few. A school with a vocational college attached maybe beneficial as education can continue right though until late teens and beyond.
On the flip side if you are just looking for a class to keep fit or as a social activity you may only want to do a couple of hours a week. In this case ask yourself or the student what sort of style or styles they wish to learn. It's a good idea to try out a few different classes too to see what suits you best and of course what you enjoy! Dance is a huge umbrella, with many styles underneath- if you don’t like one, try another.
Many schools also offer exams with a dance examination board or perhaps performances in theatres or at local events. Shows are a great way to go and see what the dance standard is like before signing up to classes. You may also fancy competing so look for a school with a strong competition background if this is your cup of tea. Take a look at the senior students in the school to see their standard. Often pupils will start at a young age and work their way up through the school so seeing how the older students dance is a great way to see the quality of teaching at the school.
In all instances make sure you check your teacher’s qualifications or experience. There are many different exam boards but you can check with them to see if a teacher is qualified with that board. Teachers in the UK should also hold a DBS check if working with young people or vulnerable adults. All teachers should have public liability insurance in case a participant hurts themselves in class.
Here at Pink Pointes we know about a lot of local schools in Essex and know many of the teachers and their students from when they come into store. We are happy to recommend some schools to do you should you want to try some classes out or take a look on our notice board.
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