Students at KS5 level will have embedded and developed key Dance skills across KS3 and KS4 in conjunction with each other, across units that are both practical and theoretical. They are expected to analyse, choreograph and perform to a high level, embedding practitioners’ techniques and styles in to their own performances. Pupils are able to push their knowledge further by ensuring links between the skills are used successfully. Thus developing a level of complexity and sophistication to their work and successfully impacting an audience.
Dance; a creative art form and physical activity. A language without words.
Dance is present across many different cultures and societies around the world. Dance at Blenheim provides students with the opportunity to explore many different styles and choreographers and understand the basic functions of movement expression. You will focus on a wide range of Dance skills and techniques, which will lead to improving performance, choreography and analysing Dance. The curriculum is designed to be engaging, exciting and inspiring for all students, with performance and evaluation at the heart of Dance at Blenheim. Choosing to study Dance will increase your confidence and help develop lifelong transferable skills such as communication and literacy, team work and creativity.
BTEC Level 3 in Performing Arts (Dance)
In KS5 students have the option to choose the BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Performing Arts (Dance), which is equivalent to 1 full A Level. The course is designed to be delivered across 2 years and includes 4 units of work. 3 of these units are mandatory and 1 is optional, 2 units are externally marked and the other 2 are internally marked.
Students who have chosen the BTEC Dance course follow the Pearson/Edexcel 2016 specification. This course offers a broad variety of practical and theoretical work for our students. Students have 10 lessons every fortnight with the split of practical to theory being dependent on the unit. Live performances and milestone target setting are two of the ways students are assessed. Students are graded using the pass/merit/distinction grading descriptors and will be aware of which grade they are working on for each unit.
Students studying Dance in Years 12 and 13 will have 2 hours or more of homework per week. Revision will also be required for Unit 1, which is the written unit and is externally assessed. Rehearsals for group choreographies and performance pieces will be required outside of lesson time. All homework tasks are planned to build on the knowledge learned in lesson, and frequently these tasks make use of student iPads or are computer based tasks.
As the course is heavily weighted in terms of practical ability, it is vital that parents actively encourage students to be participating in dance classes both in and outside of school. To achieve the best grades, students must use the knowledge gained in theory lessons and be able to apply it.
The 4 units are as follows;
Unit 1 – Investigating Practitioners’ Work
Learners investigate the work of performing arts practitioners and develop critical analysis skills and contextual understanding of how practitioners communicate themes in their work.
Unit 2 – Developing Skills and Techniques for Live Performance
Learners explore technical performance skills with a focus on developing skills and techniques in at least two performance styles
Unit 3 – Group Performance Workshop
Learners explore and integrate creative, physical and vocal skills and techniques, working collaboratively to create a performance in response to a given stimulus.
Unit 12 – Contemporary Dance Technique
Learners develop their knowledge, skills and techniques with an emphasis on practical development, application and performance skills.
Throughout the 2 years, there will be many opportunities for school trips to watch live performances in theatres. In addition to theatre trips, students have the opportunity to be part of an Academy and a Company, who perform in competitions and mass movement dance performances at various venues across England.
Dance is studied at University and the BTEC Level 3 course is excellent preparation for those wishing to continue their studies in Dance at degree level, or at Dance colleges. This course provides students with the practical and written skills relevant to degree writing and skills relevant for life. These skills are transferable to so many different professional areas. Careers that studying Dance can lead to are performer, choreographer, teacher, arts administration, fitness instructor, dance photographer/videographer, costume/clothing designer, physical therapist or dance medicine specialist, to name a few.