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Why should you choose a Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Registered Teacher?

When you, or your child, learn to dance, you want to be certain that the teaching received is of the highest quality. One way to ensure this is to look at the qualifications of the teacher.

 

Here in the UK, the Royal Academy of Dance is one of the top dance teacher programs judged as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.

What are the Risks of being taught by an unqualified teacher?

Unqualified ballet teachers can cause students untold physical damage as they lack important training in anatomy and physiology. These teachers often employ unsafe teaching methods such as forcing turnout, extreme stretching and encouraging children to go up "en pointe" too early, which can damage young bodies and potentially ruin careers.

 

"Baby ballet" classes, for children 6 months to 5 years of age, are very popular, and readily available throughout the UK, however many of these teachers are unqualified with little or no ballet experience. Qualifications for teachers of this age group are perhaps even more important than at any other stage, because at this age their bones are completely unformed, they are unset and they are very, very flexible.

 

We also often see young children who have had years of "baby ballet" training who have poor posture, no technique and cannot execute basic ballet movements such as stretching and flexing their feet, and skipping.

 

Who are the Royal Academy of Dance?

 

The Royal Academy of Dance was founded in 1920 and is active in over 80 countries. Their Faculty of Education was founded in 1999, to recognise the increasing commitment to higher and professional dance education and the faculty has trained over 7,500 dance teachers in both higher and professional programs. It has the aim of inspiring, cultivating and supporting dance teachers here in the UK and around the world.  

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The RAD Graded Syllabus consists of Pre-primary, Primary and Grades 1-8, with each

grade incorporating classical ballet, free movement and character dance.

 

The Vocational Graded Syllabus consists of Intermediate Foundation, Intermediate,

Advanced Foundation, Advanced 1, Advanced 2 and Solo Seal and is designed primarily

for older children or young adults who considering a career in professional dance, as a performer, teacher or in another capacity. The vocational syllabus is technically

demanding and comprises only Classical Ballet and Pointe Work.

Grades 1-8 and the first five levels of the Vocational Grades are accredited by the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) in England.

Why was Ofsted impressed?

 

The job of Ofsted is to look at the quality of teacher education which then corresponds directly to the quality of teaching children and adults receive from these teachers.

 

Ofsted carries out their assessment over four areas and the RAD was found to be ‘outstanding’ in all of them. They even highlighted a few things that were particularly impressive:

  • The passion and vision of the education being provided.

  • The commitment to improvement and how the RAD program had developed over time as techniques and approaches have evolved.

  • The quality of training that ensures students are provided with knowledge and understanding to keep developing their own teaching skills.

  • That the RAD use external experts as well as staff to make certain students have the right skills to handle everyday teaching demands.

What does this mean for students and parents choosing a RAD Registered Teacher?

It means that any teacher displaying the RAD Registered Teacher logo on their website or paperwork has been trained to this high standard. RAD Registered Teachers are also required to continually grow and develop by improving their knowledge and skills through Continuing Professional Development (CPD). They must also adhere to strict policies and procedures, safeguarding legislation, codes of conduct, and codes of professional practice.

RAD teachers follow a carefully designed syllabus that is aimed at being fun and safe, allowing students to grow and progress through various stages. There are also exams and assessments that look at areas such as technique, performance, creativity and musicality. These are great to motivate and reward students, regardless of age or ability.

Finally, RAD teaching is about more than just learning to dance. It is about building confidence and self-esteem, boosting self-motivation, and learning crucial communication and social skills.

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