Subject Overview

Dance offers pupils the opportunity to develop their performance and choreographic skills by using a range of skills in a wide variety of contexts. Pupils are able to communicate and express their ideas and feelings through visual, audio and kinaesthetic forms. Through exploring and sharing these ideas, pupils develop confidence and independence in learning. This is essential to becoming a successful learner who enjoys learning, makes progress and achieves.

Through exploring and developing ideas and assessing work critically, pupils reflect on and analyse not only the world around them, but also their own work and the work of others. Students’ experience of new technologies helps them to develop the skills to investigate alternative ways of working. Pupils learn to value the learning process as a key part of the creative experience.


Key Stage 3

Course outline/content: Dance is taught once a fortnight at the Heath School and the units delivered intend to provide students with the opportunity to create and perform, explore and experiment with various dance ideas, express and communicate their ideas as well as regular evaluation to enable continuous progress and development. The units delivered also heighten students’ communication and social skills within group tasks to build confidence within performance.

Unit break down

Year 7: Looking at the body and how we can use it to create dances

Unit 1: What the body can do (Actions and Shapes), how the body can move (Dynamics), discovering space and introducing choreographic devices.

Unit 2: Different types of stimuli (Visual/Auditory and Kinaesthetic)

Unit 3: Where the body can move (Personal/General and Global spacing), application of choreographic devices and how they can be utilised to alter dance movement along with the use of pathways.

Year 8: Film, Martial Arts and Music.

Unit break down

Unit 1: Films (using action movies as a stimulus for creation and performance),

Unit 2 Dance and Technology (leaning interactively using online tutorials and researching ideas through use of IPAD’s, computers etc. to inform own movement ideas)

Unit 3 Swan Song (Creating dance from a professional work)

All of the above units include the incorporation of Choreographic Devices, use of Dynamics and Contact work with a strong focus on relationships and trust within Dance. Pupils research skills and ICT skills are also enhanced through use of technology.


Key Stage 4

Course: KS4 Dance BTEC Level 1/2 (Year 9/10/11)

Awarding Body: Edexcel

Course outline/content:

Year 9: Students have the opportunity to enhance their versatility as a dancer developing key dance skills (technical and interpretive) in many different genres of dance (preparation for unit 4). Students gain independence with regard to their own self-management and engage in ongoing reflections to ensure progress is continuous. Students evidence their skills within rehearsal and performance and have the opportunity to perform live to an audience during the course. Students also develop their skills as a choreographer, creating and developing movement in response to tasks set (preparation for unit 1). Throughout year 9, students also develop their knowledge of professional works and use this knowledge to influence their own practical work (preparation for unit 2).

Year 10:  Students develop key dance skills (technical and interpretive) in two different genres of dance (unit 4) both pieces are showcased during a live performance. Students also learn how to develop a performance piece as a member of a fictional company using a professional work as a starting point (unit 2).

Year 11: Students complete an individual showcase which includes writing a letter of application (unit 1, controlled assessment). Students develop their understanding of how to demonstrate the relevant skills and knowledge when applying for different roles/vacancies. Pupils then devise two audition pieces (both of different genres) to accompany their letter of application. Pupils again, regularly reflect upon the creation of their work and assess their strengths and areas for development (both practically and theoretically) to ensure progress is consistent. In preparation to this, pupils take part in numerous choreography workshops using a variety of stimuli to develop the skills essential for creating.

Course: KS5 BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (Sixth Form: Year 12/13)

Awarding Body: Edexcel

Course outline/content: Throughout the course, students will study multiple units to enhance their knowledge of both theoretical and practical aspects within the dance art form. Students will gain a well-rounded perspective of performance (developing their overall technique as a dancer), choreographic principals as well as appreciation from a variety of angles (their own work, the work of their peers and famous choreographers) within different dance genres.

Unit 7 Performing to an Audience: The aim of this unit is to give learners experience of performing a role as part of an ensemble presenting rehearsed work to a live audience in an appropriate vocational setting.

Unit 38 Dance Performance: In this unit learners will explore and perform dances, getting a taste of the real world of the working dancer, one where talent, technical ability, aesthetic sense, fitness and stamina combine.

Unit 39 Choreographic Principles: The aim of this unit is to develop learners’ knowledge of the process of choreography. This is achieved through a series of practical tasks giving learners the opportunity to explore movement design and to create dance for performance for themselves and their peers.

Unit 43 Developing Classical Ballet Technique: This unit introduces the essentials of ballet technique. Learners will develop strength, suppleness, fitness and Co-ordination, experiment with movement combinations and learn sequences of choreography.

Unit 46 Applying Contemporary Dance Technique: This unit is about applying dance technique skills in two or more contemporary dance styles in performance. Learners will take part in regular technique classes in order to develop the skills required to dance in a contemporary dance style.

Unit 54 Dance Appreciation: This unit enables learners to gain a deeper knowledge of professional dance works by way of learning practical performance of repertoire, choreographic investigation and underpinning theory.


Dance clubs are available for all KS3/KS4 pupils to attend and take place after the school day has ended (three evenings per week). Pupils can develop their Commercial Jazz, Classical Jazz and Contemporary Dance Technique as well as develop skills in many other genres which are available to learn (Ballet, Latin American). The Heath also has a Gifted and Talented dance company which performs and tours at many points during the school year and appears within many of the school productions.