Head of Department
Miss K Barbour
Dance is an integral part of Testwood life and is featured in some capacity from year 7 to year 11.
In year 7, every pupil learns the opening sequence from Austin Powers. In this, the pupils develop a motif, exploring pathways, formations and expressive skills. The emphasis is to have fun, become an international man of mystery and develop an appreciation for dance.
In year 8, every pupil follows a scheme of work suitable for their class. A Bollywood performance is developed using Bride and Prejudice as the initial stimulus. Diving into a new culture and choreographing from action words to create an energetic and dynamic routine. Superheroes is also a stimulus to develop dance. Introducing the hero, fighting a villain and then succeeding in defeating said villain. Onomatopoeia links beautifully with this theme supporting cross curricular links.
In year 9, pupils are introduced to choreographic devices using the stimulus of history. Alvin Ailey’s Revelations, is the starting point of slavery within history. Pupils draw upon previous knowledge from history lessons, to support expressive skills and action content, whilst exploring how to develop a motif using challenging choreographic strategies. Pupils also learn how to create a dance piece using the stimulus of a poem from world war two. This unit allows the pupils to explore their creativity and imagination, free from strict rules. The work they do in English allows them to transfer their understanding of structuring a poem, the development of key word and knowledge of a current topic within history lessons.
During Key Stage 4 Dance, the pupils guide the way. Strictly Come Dancing is introduced, with pupils exploring the tango, the cha cha cha and the Charleston or creating a dance video is the order of the day. The pupils develop stimulus’ and the teacher facilitate their enthusiasm through the chosen starting point. Dance can be a part of everyday life and has tremendous social, physical and mental benefits, therefore Testwood’s aim is to develop technical and expressive skills but most importantly to have fun.
BTEC Dance Technical Award is currently offered at GCSE level. The course allows the pupils to explore and fully appreciate professional dance performances alongside building upon technique and performance skills. Pupils will learn a minimum of three dance styles and use their understanding of a professional work to support their performance. The styles covered will be contemporary, ballet, samba, musical theatre/jazz and urban. The course culminates in a prescribed stimulus and choreographic task resulting in a performance piece.