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How many lessons per week?Local vs Vocational


tomuchtallent
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Jellybeans,i think you are totally right.There has been alot of talk about children who are not going to vocational schools untill 16 and they are finding it difficult with normal school then classes most evenings.And also comments about it being much more difficult to enter 6th form without attending a vocational school first.Thats why i ask.And why are most dd/ds taking lessons nearly every evening.

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I agree totally that it is about quality not quantity, but just to give an idea, when my dd was in year 11 (GCSE year) she was doing, approximately (if I remember correctly!)

  • 1 hour ballet on Mondays
  • 1 hour ballet on Tuesdays
  • Singing lesson on Wednesdays
  • 1.5 hour ballet and 45 mins jazz on Thursdays
  • 2 hour ballet and 1 hour contemporary on Saturdays (associate class)
  • 2 hour ballet alternate Sundays (associate class)
  • GCSE dance at school

I was very worried that it wasn't enough, but she did get a funded place at vocational school at 16.

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DS at vocational school at 14 yrs (UK school year 10) does 2 and a half hours ballet class 6 days a week plus 3 nights a week a 1 hour partnering class. Whilst I agree quality is crucial surely there is a point at which quantity is also important? E.g. even with the most amazing potential and the best teacher in the world no-one would make professional standard if they only did one hour class a week?

I know DS's friend who is 16 and not at vocational school does a 1-1.5 hour ballet class 6 days a week. She got through to the finals of Elmhurst, RBS and others (didn't hear if she got places in the end as I only see her occasionally when DS is home) so evidently this was sufficient to get to a pretty impressive standard (to my ignorant eye she is a beautiful dancer but I realise I know v little!)....

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At Young Dancers Academy, a vocational day school in London, my daughter who is in year 9 does as follows:

 

Monday 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

Tuesday 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

Wednesday 2 x1.5 hours ballet

Thursday 3 hours Musical Theatre

Friday 1.25 hours ballet

Saturday 2 hours ballet, then tap and singing.

 

It seems to be a very well balanced schedule as even though Monday Tuesday and Wednesday she comes home about 7.00pm she has a few prep periods during the week when she can do her homework. All academics are done around those hours. Seems to work as this year the vocational results have been outstanding ( too early to comment on the academic). DD much less stressed than she was when she was at normal school and going to ballet every evening.

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From age 15 onwards until she went to vocational school at 17, my daughter was attending 4 schools and had 5 teachers as none could individually offer the amount and variety of lessons that she wanted to do. Ballet classes consisted of RAD/ISTD Adv1 vocational grades along with freework classes. Tap/Modern were ISTD Adv 1 vocational grades. She'd finished the ordinary grades for ballet (G8) and jazz (Gold) around the age of 14. The jazz that she did from 15 was commercial style.

 

Mon - 2.5 hrs ballet (2 lessons)

Tue - 1 hr ballet

Wed - 2.5 hrs ballet (2 lessons) and 45 mins conditioning

Thu - 1.5 hrs ballet & 1 hr drama

Fri - 1 hr ballet

Sat - 1.5 hrs ballet and 1 hr tap. Transfer to another school to do 1 hr conditioning/pilates and 1.5 hrs ballet. Then off to yet another school to do 2 hrs jazz

Sun - 1 hr modern.

 

There was also the occasional singing lesson on a Thursday.

 

It was a constant juggling act to fit all of this in while studying for GCSEs (10) and it was a relief when it was over!!

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It's a given that the quality of the teaching is absolutely necessary.

 

That being said the schedule posted by Elly - seems to be ideal. At that level - two ballet classes a day - hopefully one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Academics, lunch, a rest for the body in the hours between. It's a tough but good schedule for someone hoping to make it up to a professional level.

 

Quantity matters, too, because we are asking the entire conformation of the body to change - muscles, tendons, spine - and this won't happen without constant application. The ballet has to come from the inside - and that takes approximately 8-10 years of dedicated work. Along with that change of physical structure, the dancer has to learn how to use that body intelligently, how to respond to music, directions, the other dancers who share the space, as well as the historical "book of ballet" in which the student dancer hopes to take her/his place.

 

Nothing easy in any of it.

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Our 2 DDs were offered vocational school places both in the UK and in France and before that they were doing:

DD1 (14)

Mon - 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

Tues - 1 hour ballet followed by 1.5 hours contemporary

Wed - 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

Thur - 1.5 hours ballet

Fri - 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

 

DD2 (12)

Mon - 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

Tues - 1hour ballet

Wed - 1 hour contemporary followed by 1.5 hours ballet

Thur - 1.25 hours ballet

Fri - 2 x 1.5 hours ballet

 

Hope it helps, tomuchtalent!

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Still wishing we could afford YDA.....:-(

 

However! Until we win the lottery, this is dd's schedule (she's year 8):

 

Monday: 45 mins ISTD Modern, followed by 45 mins ISTD tap

Tuesday: 1 hr 15 RAD Grade 6 ballet, followed by 1 hr 30 RAD Intermediate ballet

Most Wednesdays: Private ballet lesson (non-syllabus)

Thursday: Twilight GCSE Dance 4 - 6pm

Saturday: Associate Class (3.5 hours - ballet, pointework, Contemporary)

 

At school she has piano and singing lessons and is in 2 choirs and a lunchtime dance club. She usually gets an average of 1-1.5 hours homework every night.

 

I feel tired just reading this, but I would add that everything is entirely her choice!

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Checked with DS last night and in fact its a 3 hr class- with academics either side and partnering 3 evenings (6pm, one hour) and sat (one hour), then 1 hour 'study hall' (though actually he gets more like 3-4 hrs homework at his speed of work). Saturday afternoon and Sunday all day are free. They don't do any dance other than ballet at his age....

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Wow!!! Your children really do a lot.

 

My dd is wanting to go to vocational school in 2013 (September) and we are currently looking at increasing her classes. She is 10 years old & is currently doing all ISTD 45 min ballet, 30 min tap & 30 min modern every Saturday. Her teacher only teaches part time.

 

The subject of high school came up a month ago & although she has mentioned vocational schools in the past it wasn't discussed seriously until about 3 weeks ago - after reading all your childrens lessons I sort of think she might have missed the boat.

 

I did enquire at another dance school & have signed her up for an additional weekly 2 hour ballet class which includes body conditioning and flexibility work. She was also offering a ( I think) intermediate foundation class but this clashes with her core classes and also a pre pointe class but this clashes with my work as I work nights!

 

She is also auditioning for 2 associate programmes - 1 of which is a weekly 1 1/4 hour ballet class, the other offers a monthly ballet and jazz class. If she could get into one of those I think that would be a huge benefit.

 

I'm wondering if this would be enough? Everyone that sees her says she is a lovely dancer & when her school did a show recently, people said she really stood out from everyone else.

 

I did discuss with a vocational school the number of classes but she said she was looking for potential.

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Don't panic smallbythesea, your dd is a lot younger than those of other people who have posted on this thread, so you wouldn't expect her to be doing so much. At your dd's age, mine was only doing 2 45 minute or 1 hour ballet classes per week (mind you we weren't on the vocational school roller coaster back then).

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Definitely don't panic! Back when dd was 10 she was not doing tap, GCSE, or "real" Associate Classes (by which I mean she was dancing on Saturdays at Tring's "Junior Conservatoire" which was the previous version of Tring's RAD/ISTD classes, not an equivalent to RBS/Elmhurst/Central etc.)

 

She would have been doing ISTD Grade 3 Modern and RAD Grade 4 ballet, and had literally only just started to learn RAD Inter Foundation. She wouldn't have been dancing anywhere near as she is now. :-)

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My DD is 11 nealy 12 and wants to go to vocational school at 16 she currently does

 

Monday - 45 mins IDTA and 45 mins Stretch and Strengthening class

Tuesday - 45 Mins IDTA Tap & 45 mins IDTA Ballet

 

Wednesday - nothing

 

Thursday - RAD Grade 5 & 6 (2 hours)

 

Friday - Nothing

 

Saturday - Intermediate Foundation Class 1 hour then she helps with the pre primary class for an hour (her brother started this class) but after a few weeks went to the back of the class put his shoes on and said he'd had enough lol :rolleyes: (he's quite happy to dance around the house though !!!!)

 

Sunday - Currently nothing but will start as an associate with Northern Ballet in september and this class will be for 2.5 hours

 

we top this up with EYB and summer schools but i do worry as she gets older if we will be able to keep up with the level of training that she will need to enable her to have a chance of gaining a place at 16

 

Hope this helps x

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taxi4ballet, yes I agree with you. Her teacher only teaches on Saturdays which is why her ballet,tap & modern class are on the same day. The new class I have signed her up for is with a different dance school on a Wednesday. The associate classes, if she is successful, would be a Saturday or Sunday. I'd love to sign her up for more but we have no local schools that are of a decent standard unless we travel 15-20 miles. The associate classes depending if she is successful would be a 1 hour or 2 hour drive each way.

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I had to take my Ex DD's for a 45 minute journey to one school(if the traffic was OK) and a half hour drive to another. There was nothing here after one dance teacher retired for another 10 years.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorted extra classes out now after speaking to her teacher today.

 

So from next week she will be doing:

 

Mon - 45 min ballet class for the grade above

Weds - 2 hour barre work,flexibility,strengthening,body conditioning

Sat - 45 min ballet class, 30 min tap class & 30 min modern class

 

She is also aauditioning for Yorkshire ballet scholarship centre - which if successful - would be a 1 1/4 hour ballet class on a Saturday morning.

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I do worry about not doing enough, but heres our timetable.

Age 14 (Year 10)

 

Monday- Ballet 1 hour, Contemporary 1 hour, Body Conditioning/Pointe 30 mins

Wednesday- Modern Jazz/Tap 2 hours

Friday- RAD Ballet 1 hour, Modern 1 hour

 

That works out to about 6 and a half hours a week.

 

Hopefully we'll be doing 2 hours at York Scholars on a Saturday as well to top that up or a Northern Ballet open class on a Thursday for 1 hours and a half.

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It is very difficult to judge whether you are doing enough, this is often a sore point between my daughter and husband in this house he feels she is doing too much and she believe s not enough - im caught in the middle

Hers schedule is as follows

 

Monday - nothing

Tuesday 1 hour non syl ballet followed by 1 hour grade 3 RAD

Wednesday 45 MIns Tap

Thursday 45 mins Tap

Friday nothing

Saturday 45 mins Jazz , 1 hour RAD Ballet , 1 hour modern.

Also festival rehearsals are put inbetween these classes ... she has just turned 8 .

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My youngest used to do three hour's ballet, one hour of tap and hour of jazz, and hour's acting and an hour's singing and homework!. It didn't leave time for much else! She is now finishing her drama degree and hopes to be a professional actress.

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