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 alumna Danielle Carter.

When did you first become interested in dance?

I started dancing at two and a half years old with my mum; I learnt Ballet, Modern, Tap. I took part in competitions from the age of three, covering all sorts of genres and achieving lots of medals and the highest marks at many festivals across the North West! At age nine I started with the Michelle Stephenson School of Dance in Ulverston where I was first introduced to bbodance Ballet, Tap, Modern, and Jazz.

Why did you choose our Level 6 Teaching Qualifications course?

I already have a teaching degree in Primary Education; I hold Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and have been a primary school teacher for the last six years, so this course was more beneficial [than the others you offer]. I felt that completing this course would push my knowledge skills and understanding further and I would learn new things. Level 6 offered a variety of lectures focusing on different topics that I was really interested in learning about.

How has the course helped you develop your teaching practice?

Since completing the course, my teaching has improved greatly, as have my confidence, attitude, and belief in myself! I feel I'm offering a much more well-rounded, knowledge-based curriculum to my dancers. I understand things in greater depth — for example, the body, various muscle groups, etc., and I feel I'm helping my students become well-rounded dancers by using this information appropriately and passing it on!

What did you enjoy the most about the Level 6 course?

The course was full of really interesting lectures and delivered by really knowledgable people in a very informative, supportive, and encouraging way! 

I really enjoyed the course as it challenged my knowledge and understanding of topics and gave me so many ideas and strategies that I've implemented. These have dramatically improved my lessons, and I feel very proud of how far my own skills and school have come since completing Level 6. I've also enjoyed visiting HQ!

What have you been doing since you graduated?

Since [receiving my diploma] I've been running my own dance school and opening the children up to the world of bbodance. I got married as well after graduating from Level 6, and my dance children performed a surprise dance for me and my hubby outside the church! It made me very emotional. We're currently working very hard towards our first set of exams, as well as entering many dance competitions across the North West! Some of my children were also chosen to dance in the pantomime Sleeping Beauty with the local amateur group where I'm also Resident Choreographer, and this summer the children were also asked to take part in the musical Annie. Some children got leading roles! It’s been a very exciting time! A while ago I also started adult dance classes, which have been hugely successful.

I've recently taken over as Dance Lead in the primary school where I'm class teacher. Dance in my primary school has been a huge success — we've learnt dances about the war, Ancient Egypt, Romans, and I'm currently working with the younger ones on dance based around topics they study in class, such as outer space and The Great Fire of London!

Finally, I've also attended many Continuing Professional Development (CPD) dance sessions through bbodance, which have further developed my knowledge, skills and daily practice. I've also met lots of new people through these sessions, which has been really nice.

What would you like to do in the future?

I love seeing the children enjoy dance as much as I do. Watching them have fun and achieve makes everything worthwhile. I love the fact that I'm giving children opportunities they would not receive elsewhere, especially living in a rural area. I truly feel I'm helping my community. 

Because of this, my long-term career goals are to continue striving to have the best dance school I can, as well as encourage more accessible dance lessons in the Primary School PE curriculum where I live, as I know it’s an area lacking in most schools' PE curricula. With this I would like to try and set up a dance platform where schools can access Dance provision, ideas and resources! 

I would also like to take dance into the many care homes in the area. Listening to one of my peers on the course talk about the many benefits dance has for the elderly and how much she enjoyed teaching these classes really sparked my interest. I would like to research this further and see whether there would be interest in my town.

We hope this brief interview helps you on your dance journey!



(photo: Danielle and students attending a competition, courtesy of Danielle Carter)