Becoming a dance teacher is an important decision. If you're considering it, it might be helpful to find out what our students think. Could one of our Teaching Qualifications help you reach your goals?
Here's a brief Q&A with our alumna, Jordan Hazrati, travel enthusiast and author of the blog, Passport and Pants.
Tell us a bit about you!
My name is Jordan, and I was born and raised in Staffordshire but have recently found myself living down South, in Windsor, close to Heathrow Airport. I have danced for virtually my entire life, having started dance training at my local dance school at the age of 2. The BBO (now bbodance) was always a key part of my training experience, and I worked towards taking exams in Ballet, Tap, and Jazz until the age of 16 when I started training professionally in Musical Theatre. Alongside my training, I started to assist in teaching classes and realised that it was something I really enjoyed doing, so when I graduated into the industry, I decided to undertake my bbodance Level 4 and 5 Dance Teaching Qualifications, eventually progressing on to graduate from the Level 6 Diploma in Dance Teaching and, on recommendation from Sam, completed the Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) course, which gives me the ability to teach in schools around the country.
What led you to become a dance teacher? Is that connected to your passion for flying and travel in some way?
Throughout my training, I had some excellent teachers who influenced not only my dancing ability but also my outlook on the career path I had chosen and my mental wellbeing. I decided fairly early on in my teens that I wanted a broad career, with international capabilities, and something that had a focus on improving mental wellbeing. Students face so many different pressures in their lives, both in and out of the dance studio, and I liked the idea of being able to positively influence the mindset of my students going out into the world. Alongside the knowledge and belief that dance itself has such a strong power to be able to influence mood and wellbeing, and of course my intense love and passion for dance and movement, it made perfect sense to train to become a dance teacher. Eventually, auditioning to be a performer took a sideline, and I moved into fitness and dance teaching full-time.
My passion for flying and travel has always been there, and one summer a few years back when I was at a bit of a crossroads with my career and personal life, a fellow dance teaching friend turned cabin crew member gave me the final push I needed to go for it! On a side note, so many of us within the airline industry come from the arts, the personality traits needed to be successful are surprisingly similar; for example, having the confidence to be your true self, having an appreciation of hard work and discipline, and also strong memory skills to learn policy and procedures on board. I was successful and flew short-haul for an airline for a year before taking the even bigger leap and committing to long-haul flying.
The great thing about dance teaching and flying is that I don't necessarily have to choose between the two as careers. For example, when I worked short-haul, I was still able to teach; much more in the winter, admittedly, whilst schedules were fairly quiet. Even now, when I operate long-haul, as long as I communicate with my airline and ensure I'm well-rested for duty, I can still teach! From teaching, I have learnt to adapt to various situations and be confident in working as a team to achieve a desired outcome. I'm unafraid of early starts and late finishes, and I thrive on new challenges and situations. Also, this training in teaching and the arts has given me an appreciation of aesthetics, teaching me to look after my body via hydration, nutrition, and fitness, which allows me to be the most productive and confident in myself that I can be whilst flying! In short, the two careers suit each other remarkably well and I'm so lucky that I've experienced teaching across the world, from every corner of the UK to Europe and as far as Hong Kong!
How did you find out about the bbodance Teaching Qualifications courses?
I first became aware of them when students in years above me at the dance school I attended started coming into classes to learn more about teaching practise and pass their own teaching qualifications. For me, it seemed like the perfect way to study, as I could study from home, continue working to earn money alongside studying, and yet have great lecture weekends at headquarters to keep me motivated and inspired. More than that though, bbodance Teaching Qualifications are recognised around the world, which means that, no matter where I end up, I will always be qualified to teach!
What's next for you — in dance, flying, or both?
I have just graduated from my BA (Hons) in Education from Keele University. My dissertation was related to the effects of dance on the mental health and wellbeing of people within the community, and, of course, I found very positive results within this. My study is therefore completed for now (at the age of 25 I'm ready to take a pause from formally researching and referencing!) and I aim to enjoy everything the world has to offer through my job as cabin crew. I will always keep my hand in with teaching, taking classes as and when friends of mine need a cover teacher or just a fresh set of eyes to look over some choreography, but I am immensely lucky to be able to explore every corner of the world, and that includes experiencing the entire world from a dance perspective; think Broadway shows, dance classes in LA, experiencing authentic Chinese dance... there is so much to see out there, which, in turn, will only make me a better and more cultured teacher. I think, at some point, a Masters may be on the cards, related to my dissertation research; distance-learning, of course, as I could never give up exploring the world, but equally I'd love to take my teaching skills and train aspiring cabin crew at an airline. That's the amazing thing about the bbodance teaching course — the skills learnt are so diverse that you can take them and apply them to many other areas of teaching and education! Dance is an international language, and no matter where I land, I'm blessed that I can always find somewhere to go or something to do that relates to dance.
Thank you for your feedback!
(Photos: Jordan taking off around the world, and at bbodance HQ!)