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Juggling act!


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DD is entering her GCSE year when she will need to really juggle study time and dance time. In terms of dance she will be doing 2 hours ballet, 90 minutes each of tap and modern, 45 minutes each of jazz and musical theatre, and a 75 minute group dance class. In addition she attends Tring CBA for 6 sessions per term. I am not convinced that this is enough for when she comes to audition for dance college against students from vocational schools, weekly associate classes and larger local dance schools. I am worried about taking the wrong decision now means less options later, but DD is nervous about committing to more than this and doing well in GCSEs. I am also concerned that she does no Contemporary as this seems to be such a flourishing area of dance. I would really value any comments or suggestions, especially where families have faced this dilemma. Thanks.


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Please tell her not to stress. All my students just gained some fantastic GCSE and A level results with nothing below a C grade. They, on average, do 6 hours ballet, 4 modern, 3 tap and then a musical theatre class drama and contemporary classes plus other extras, festivals etc. we find it does pigeon hole them into being focused and organised. They do get tired bit i know for a fact still find time to party so they can't be that exhausted! It is quality not quantity so do not underestimate that! And sometimes a ball will drop and they'll have a stressy week but it all passes fairly swiftly. I am sure if she is conscientious already about wanting to do well then she will. That is all probably unhelpful but hopefully will at least give her a biit of confidence. :)

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DD has just brought her score up to 9 GCSEs & 2 BTECs - she did 4-9:30 on Monday, 6-9:15 to Tuesday, 6-9 on Wednesday, 5-7 on Thursday & 4-6:45 on Friday plus 4.5 hrs on Sat & Sun (both in London)


Her academic achievement rose when she increased her dancing - from firm Ds, with some E/F to solid C, with a couple of Bs (oh & that distinction* in BTEC Dance :P )


I am SO, so proud of her


Dance seems to create organised, hard working, capable students - at least it has in this household :)

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Our youngest was very organised for her GCSES too. She knew it was important for her future plus she is a hard worker anyway. It was stressful, though, especially when she was in a play and was allowed to read her part rather than learn it off by heart until the actual performance as a couple of younger kids complained and said it wasn't fair. I know that upset her.

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it can be hard doing gcses and dance but it is managable.

i think its important not to get stressed, if you get stressed it just makes everything harder. so only do as much as she can manage academically and dance wise.


i've just got 10 gcses ( none below a B, yay;) ), while doing english youth ballet at the same time as exams ( last exam then straight to dress rehearsal and show!). i also had an audition the day before an exam. explain to the school if she has to have time off, so they understand and can provide her with any missed resources.


i haven't done contemporary but managed to get a place at vocational school. i think having a strong ballet background makes contemporary easier to pick up, as do modern lessons so i wouldn't worry too much.


remind her to pay as much attention in lessons as possible to avoid having to do extra afterschool. it's useful to make small revision or summary cards (after each lesson or after a whole topic) they can then be used while driving around to dance and auditions etc.


also some kind of unrelated advice but make sure she knows how she learns best ie. kinesthetic (probably shes a dancer!!), audio or visual. so she can get the most out of her revision time.


sorry its quite long, just wanted to share some advice of what i did as i went through this last year,
i hope it can be of use in some way



Edited by aballetlife
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