At Key Stage 4, students have the opportunity to study GCSE Dance. Students will focus on three areas: performance (30%), choreography (30%) and critical appreciation of dance. (40%) Students are strongly encouraged to develop their creative ideas and to build themselves into dynamic and committed performers.

GCSE Dance is a demanding two year course which requires students to develop a large array of skills in various dance styles, with the main emphasis being on contemporary dance. During the course students will study several professional dance works from a range of leading choreographers.

Year 10

Students will study 6 professional works in the first year of their GCSE course. The works include a range of styles, including, contemporary, street and samba, which aims to give students a broad knowledge and understanding of various dance genres, choreographers, and companies in the industry. They will learn performance and choreography skills through lessons, workshops, homework tasks and performing, as well as learning key vocabulary in preparation for their exam in year two of the course.

Students will take part in technique classes that will build and develop their physical skills, such as stamina, posture alignment and coordination. They will also work on developing their expressive skills, such as focus, projection and musicality. These skills will be assessed over the course of the two years and will prepare students for moderation of their solo and group performance units.

During year one student’s will be involved in choreography lessons They will learn how to create motifs which they will develop using various choreographic devices. They will learn about structuring dance, choosing suitable accompaniment and communicating the choreographic intent through appropriate use of action, space, dynamic and relationship content. Choreography will be taught through the study of the 6 professional works.

Year 11

In Year 11, students will begin by learning two set phrases that are provided by AQA. After this they will begin choreographing their group dance, using the skills learnt in year one of the course. Students will be provided with a list of stimuli that they must choose from and create a group dance based on this stimulus.

Students will then move on to their group performance. Their teacher will work collaboratively with students to create a group performance of any style that will be performed in a duet or trio

Throughout year 11 students will revisit the 6 professional works in a more theory-based approach. They will focus on the production elements of the works, such as, set design, lighting, costume and accompaniment, and come to understand the part these aspects have to play in the communication of the choreographic intent.

Students will sit an exam at the end of the course, which is 1 hour and 30 mins long and worth 40% of their overall grade.