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chloeballet96

Can my dance school be my permanent job?

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Hi there I'm 18 yrs old and currently training to become a dance teacher with the IDTA.

I'm currently learning IDTA intermediate ballet and once I've done my exam will be doing the pre-associate and associate for it.

I've heard you can become an RAD teacher once I'm IDTA qualified, I don't know if this is true? I hope so!

 

Anyway I just have a few questions to see what people think - 

I've done RAD ballet my whole life ever since I was 5, but I've never done tap and modern exams I've done performances in tap, modern, street etc but not exams. I know its a silly question but one day I'm going to have to make the decision, what sounds better:

An RAD dance school with just ballet exams and tap and modern non-syllabus OR shall I do all the IDTA theatre associates so theres exams in IDTA ballet, tap and modern?

I don't feel very confident teaching tap and modern syllabus work because I've obviously never done the exams.

 

Which one would you rather take your child to or sounds better? Thank you :)

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Hello Chloe and welcome to the Forum.  We've got a number of teachers who are members so I am sure they will be able to offer some advice.

 

Meantime, on a slightly different slant, here's a topic recently started about teaching qualifications:

 

http://www.balletcoforum.com/index.php?/topic/7668-dance-teaching-qualifications/

 

I do hope you will continue to post and let us know how you get on.

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Dear Chloeballet96

 

I am an RAD and IDTA teacher but qualified as an RAD teacher first. I found when looking for a teaching job that in my area there were more schools teaching the  IDTA syllabus than RAD although you will find that a lot of schools will teach the IDTA syllabus and also teach the RAD major exams which I think works very well.

As an RAD teacher I contacted  IDTA head office and as I had an RAD teaching qualification that enabled me to teach IDTA as well as the two associations have merged.This may be the same the other way round.

I hope that this helps.

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As a parent I want my dd to have a good teacher with qualifications. DD does RAD and IDTA, and does a variety of types of dance. In some classes there has been a second teacher who is learning the syllabus with a view to taking further teaching exams & expanding the range of styles they can teach. This may be an option for you with regards tap etc.

 

It may be best to concentrate on getting qualified in ballet, look for work & then see what (if any) extra exams you need.

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I would always look for an RAD teacher for ballet (my mum an RAD teacher) and ISTD or IDTA for tap and modern. A nice mix would be to do IDTA and/or RAD children's exams and RAD majors. However, good and bad teachers can be found in any syllabus. Personality, care and an ability to inspire and teach strong technique will win the day in any syllabus.

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Personally I think the RAD ballet grades are much better than the IDTA in terms of fostering musicality, dance quality and a love of dance. IMHO They are much more carefully designed to suit the motor development of children so that complex movements are built up using parallel or natural turnout and are broken down into simple steps early on then built up later. I don't know what the IDTA modern, tap, jazz, theatrecraft, freestyle etc etc syllabi are like though.

 

I know it's ultimately the teacher not the syllabus but in my experience RAD schools tend to produce the highest standards in ballet and schools who do ISTD Tap and Modern produce higher standards than IDTA schools.

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I sort of agree but it could be that as RAD has become so much more widespread and well known that there are just a lot

more pupils following this syllabus than say the BBO syllabus......which is also very good ......though I trained with RAD as a child myself. This could also contribute to its success ......just more doing it!

 

Though I do like the progression rate with RAD. I find in the Russian Syllabus for example there are some rather big jumps which may suit the super talented but I think a syllabus like RAD is good for all children to follow as not all will become professional dancers.

 

I would get a qualification for ballet with RAD or BBO to teach if I was setting out now.

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As a parent I think the quality of the individual teacher is most important. I would also expect them to have one of the major syllabus teaching qualifications.

I am not a dancer so can't really comment on the quality of the different syllabi. My dc do BBO. When at Associates and on this forum most seem to do RAD. I guess this could mean that RAD produces the best dancers or maybe the best dancers or knowledgeable parents seek out RAD?

I wouldn't change away from our fab teachers for another syllabus (although I would consider moving to get away from some of the awful BBO leotards!!!!)

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LinMM - when you say the Russian Syllabus has rather big jumps, do you mean gaps in the syllabus or grand allegro steps?  If the latter, I don't see that as a problem, most children love to jump and I think a lot of the emphasis in the new RAD syllabus tries to emulate the Russian way of teaching.

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I meant gaps in syllabus. The RAD for example progresses to each new grade rather more gradually whereas it seems in the Russian syllabus there are slightly bigger jumps in what you are expected to do eg: earlier introduction of demi pointe work at the barre etc. So in this respect RAD or BBO style syllabus may suit more children. Of course any child who is going to go on to be any good at Ballet will cope fine with the Russian syllabus.

 

I agree jumping is something most children do quite naturally :)

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I trained (as a teenager) in Vaganova technique and have also completed a teachers course in the method. In my opinion it is not a realistic method in which to teach recreational students (of course it is possible to introduce certain aspects), as it requires a certain physical and mental strength on the student's behalf. However I would not agree that there are big jumps (gaps) Taught correctly It is a very slow, thorough, painstaking process and each level builds open the previous one. The RAD syllabus (at least until the vocational exams) also has this progression, but imo is much more accessible to all students. x

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Just wanted to add that I think the new RAD syllabi have changed the concept of RAD as a gradual slow process.  I'd be very interested in hearing how teachers are coping with it, who only see their students once a week!

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I agree pretty much with Ellie.  The Russian training is very slow and methodical but there are not any gaps.  However most schools that teach this would expect serious students to build up to multiple ballet classes per week to gain strength.  The RAD has always said that the Grade exams are aimed at once-a-week students who have a few extra classes in the run up to the exam, does this still hold true with the new Grades?  

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Ive never really trained from the beginning in the Vaganova style so have only really done as an adult so following all the way through as a student may be more gradual. Perhaps it's that although it progresses from level to level with each building on the one before etc each individual level has more content than say a single grade of RAD.

I'm sure the barre is that much longer than an RAD or BBO barre as I think they seem to do a lot more tendus type exercises and am sure introduce fondu and demi pointe work earlier than the RAD would but students who have studied Russian from the beginning can correct me on this!!

 

It's interesting that you say Ellie that you don't think its that suitable for recreational students. ....because I agree I do think its that more demanding but It's probably okay for people who have studied ballet before as myself. However I do know people in a class I attend that have only come to ballet as an adult and only done Vaganova style and only do one class a week!!

It's very hard to make any real progress like this though.

 

Sorry chloeballet gone a bit off course.

I believe if you are keen on ballet ........training under one of the Russian organisations to teach could also be an option. I know that under the Russian system teachers do have a bit more freedom on exactly how they teach the syllabus. They have to cover certain things at certain levels but are free to teach and put lessons together how they want to. Slightly less prescriptive than RAD grades for example.

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Hi Chloe,

 

I hope your studies are going well.

 

I have recently had long conversations with the RAD about my own students wishing to qualify as teachers, so I hope the information I give here is current.

 

The IDTA and RAD previously advertised a relationship 'By Association'. This allowed any registered teacher of either syllabus to enter students for examinations across both examination boards.

 

Many RAD teachers were very unhappy about this as it meant, in practice, that - for example an IDTA Tap teacher could theoretically teach RAD ballet and enter students for examinations without the rigorous training previously required to register as a teacher (RAD), or any working knowledge of the RAD syllabus.

 

If you go to the RAD Web Site you will see that this form of registration - which you mention in your post - has now ceased to be accepted.

 

If it is your intention to teach within the RAD you should speak to the education department about the routes to registration available to you and the options for qualifying. Currently their 'Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies' is the entry level course.

 

I hope this helps clarify.

Kind regards,

Carmen

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Hello everyone just thought I'd ask you for some advice and opinions on this thanks!

 

I'm training to become a dance teacher with the IDTA and when qualified will open up my own dance school but I've never really been fond of doing dance exams myself when I was younger I've always found them quite stressful and get myself all worked up about them haha! But I've always loved choreographing dances and doing performances and I can't wait to do my own big shows I would love a competition group as well to go and perform at competitions with my choreography!

Thing is most dance schools in the UK do dance exams and I don't know how my dance school would be successful if we just dos performances or something? I don't know any tips and advice? Thank you

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You have some good ideas and I wish you every success in your training and proposed venture.

 

It may be that most children and young people wish to prepare for RAD and other examinations but there is a vast and growing number of recreation dancers such as I who do not propose to take any examinations but might be interested in dancing in the occasional show or even having a go at choreography. Many of those recreational dancers have taken up ballet and other forms of dance late in life.

 

To give you some idea of the potential market, Northern Ballet Academy in Leeds Leeds runs beginners and improvers classes for persons aged 55 or over as well all age and all ability classes at other times and all those classes are full.   Similarly, Ailsa Baker had over 50 students in her absolute beginners class at KNT Danceworks in Manchester last night. Most of the students in Ailsa's class were young men and women but there were a fair number of older ones including me.  Fiona Noonan also gets a good crowd for her adult ballet classes at Hype Academy in Sheffield and the University of Huddersfield.  I have taken one adult ballet class from Adam Pudney at Pineapple and he had a lot of students too.

 

As you may or may not know, I keep a little blog on dance when I have time. Some of my most popular posts are my reviews of those adult ballet classes. I have posted some of those reviews here occasionally.  When you qualify as a teacher and offer classes to the public I shall be very glad to list your class if you so wish.  If you run an adult ballet class on a drop in basis I shall try to attend and review it.   Should any of that  be of  interest to you, do get in touch at the appropriate time.

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It may depend on the type of dancer you are hoping to attract. When did first started dance age 4, we knew very little about what to expect and nothing about exams. At that point a good teacher was all we were looking for. Dd is older now and has changed dance schools a couple of times. As she wants to dance professionally the exams are more important to us now, and has been a factor in choice of school.

There are successful dance schools locally that don't do exams though. The extra performance experience can be beneficial.

You don't have to make a decision about offering exams to start with. See how things go and discuss with parents / students to get their opinions, allow your dance school to develop gradually.

And good luck with your school

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Does the IDTA have exams as well?  You could do both.  I went to a school that did RAD Vocational exams and some Russian syllabus exams, but we also did lots of performances and a couple of competitions. I adored dancing on stage and agree that it's an important part of a dancer's development.  It's important, however, to have serious training classes alongside separate classes for the competition or show dances, otherwise their technique is not going to be good enough.  And you don't want to do a competition every week like on DanceMoms!  Choose your comps carefully!  Best of luck - have fun being creative!

Edited by Dance*is*life
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there is a dance school in a small town not far from us that started off with classes in school halls and village halls but now have their own premises that started off a performance dance school. Initially it ran performance classes rather than grades so they grouped the classes more according to the key stages used by schools. These were then split further as numbers grew. The teacher choreographed routines that incorporated various steps from the grades - adding a bit more to the routine each week. Younger children perhaps learned 2-3 routines a term which could then be used for competitions and at least once a year there was a show to showcase all the work of all the children. They soon found that students and parents alike wanted some form of recognition of learning - to mark achievement and introduced the optional grade classes alongside the performance classes. Not all students chose to study the grades as some just preferred the performance side of it. The teachers were RAD and it was RAD exams rather than IDTA but this school has been successful so it can be done. I have to say that the performance side is not all classical ballet, however but ballet and ballet blended with lyrical/modern/hiphop depending on the music and choice of music was not classical but more modern popular music.

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Hello everyone I'm currently doing my IDTA Ballet Intermediate and IDTA Associate training.

I've been thinking about what I want to do after i finish my qualification like examples, opening up a dance school? teaching in schools? etc. 

 

But I do have an idea but I just don't know how it would work haha, how could I open up my own performing arts college/school?

Like one of the small ones like Pattinson College in Coventry where they do a 3 year musical theatre course or similar to Dyamond Stage Academy where they do a 3 year diploma in dance and theatre arts.

 

Could I open up my own course? I've only ever done dance and of course I would find people to employ to teach certain subjects.

How could I do this? Thanks

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Hello Chloe,

 

You have a fine ambition.  I have never been to a dance lesson in my life so can't offer you any practical advice in that respect.

 

However it occurs to me that a school/accredited college course should be a longer term aim.  I suggest you need to build up your teaching credentials before you should branch out on your own.

 

Starting any business is a minefield and, as well as building up your teaching credentials with practical experience I suggest you need to get some form of training in running your own business.  For example for any form of teaching these days I believe you need a CRB certificate.  You would also need a comprehensive business plan to help you get the finance you will need to start up and you will need to consider where you will be located and what sort of premises you will need.  And this is just off the top of my head...

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It certainly can be done - as I posted in your very similar thread - I know of a school that started small but has been going for nearly ten years now I think.  It took at least a year though before the co-owners gave up their day jobs.  DD also has a friend who started up from scratch about 18 months ago what she calls a 'Performing Academy'.  Both started off in school and village halls.  As Janet says you do need CRB and some form of training in running your own business would be very wise.  I think a 3 year training course is ambitious - I think aiming at children and at adults is easier as a start up than the 3 year diploma group.  Getting any form of accreditation as a dance school does take time but I wish you luck.

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Maybe at first it would be worthwhile to find a job within a school of the type you would like to eventually run, and you could then gain the relevant experience, not only with the teaching and admin, but the finance side and dealing with the general public as well.

 

You'll then have plenty of industry knowledge and experience which will stand you in good stead when you branch out on your own.

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& as a mum who would be responsible for paying the things I'd like to see are: qualified teachers, teacher who have performed extensively, a proven track record of sucess at the exam level you are aiming at, accreditation, previous students working in the industry

 

A new college is unlikely to be able to provide these on day one, so think about how it will build to that

 

As a self-employed person myself, I wish you luck - but with hindsight I would suggest starting smaller unless you have a limitless pot of money.....

 

oops I forgot to add a CRB is now a DBS & I have spent half of today arguing with them ;)

Edited by Katymac

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I think that you would be wise to gain a few years experience teaching at another school before starting your own school. There is a lot to running a business and you would do well to find out about your legal and professional responsibilities before starting out. There are many things to think about including: funding the business (and yourself) whilst you are building up your business, indemnity insurance, book-keeping, child protection and employee rights (I'm not sure whether dance teachers are treated as employed or self-employed for taxation and employment legislation purposes). You are planning to offer training in an area which is not your area of expertise. That's quite risky and you would need to be able to evaluate the quality of the training offered by your musical theatre (or whatever) staff.

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I too had/have that dream! I got my first Associate exam when I was 18 and worked for other teachers when I was at universities. It takes a long time to become established, to build up a name and reputation for vocational training or at least high quality training. I did a PGCE so that I could earn a decent living and have recently started a dance school 'on the side' as well as running MIDAS. It's my goal that one day I'll either win the lottery and buy a big building, turn it into a college and instantly get going without any financial worries, or more realistically, build my dance school up gradually until I can make my dream a reality.

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What a wonderful dream you both have

 

Good luck to all teachers and aspiring teachers & I hope you achieve those dreams

 

DH (another teacher) wanted to open a dual purpose nursery (ground floor) & dance studio (first floor) - but we only got as far as the nursery & it's too small!! Never mind, one day......

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This thread takes me back.! I remember me and a friend when we were both at Urdang talking about the idea of one day running an agency for dancers,models and actors. Or else a school with it`s own agency,like Italia Conti. Big dreams for two 16 year olds.!!

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