Parents' Frequently Asked Questions
What Age can my child start to learn to dance at Pointe Works?
Our minimum age is 3. We start teaching children ballet at Pointe Works in the year before they start school. The 'Dance to your Own Tune' Royal Academy of Dance Syllabus is designed to be taught to children from 3 to 5 years. (Ages are approximate)
What benefits are there in sending my child to ballet classes?
Ballet classes will develop their musicality, control and co-ordination. Attending weekly classes will improve their cardio vascular fitness and enhance their creativity. You may find they are more expressive physically and definitely more self confident. Correct posture, core stability and balance are important focus areas which may result in less falls and bumps.
What should my child wear to attend classes at Pointe Works?
As soon as you know if your child is continuing with ballet, I would highly recommend buying some ballet shoes.(£12 from Pointe Works) It is important that students get used to working their feet correctly in ballet shoes. Uniform is available for children from Pre-School upwards and can be bought from Pointe Works, please see the Uniform page for details.
Long hair should be tied back, preferably in a bun.
How do I pay for classes?
When your child starts at Pointe works, weekly payment is probably the best idea for the first 2 weeks just so that you can check that your child is enjoying the classes prior to joining in with term fees. You can then join in with term fees and receive a 10% discount on the block payment that you make. Most parents pay by bank transfer.
Can I stay and watch the class?
It is possible for parents to watch the Pre-School Ballet classes when they are able to do so from the very start to the very finish of the lesson and only when they are able to arrange childcare for siblings. If you do decide to stay in the main teaching area, it is really important that you don't talk to other parents during the lesson. For me to teach them effectively I will need you to be quiet. Once your child has started school, parent observation is available on the last lesson of each half term.
When can they take their first Ballet Exam?
After they have completed First Steps & Next Steps ballet, each September the children move up to the next class. The classes are organised in academic school years to match the RAD’s minimum age requirements for exams. The Royal Academy recommend the children study each grade for a minimum of one school year before either taking an exam or moving up to the next grade. Exams are held each year in December and Summer term and are optional. They do not need to have taken or passed an exam to move up. You will be advised as we go along when the exams are held so that your child has an option to join in if they are eligible.
Adult Dancers' Frequently Asked Questions
I would like to improve my fitness but I don't like the gym, will a ballet class achieve this?
Yes! Ballet is brilliant for improving your general fitness and muscle tone, it works to lengthen and strengthen muscles whilst also correcting postural issues. It is also great for building core strength, balance, flexibility and self confidence.
What should I wear to adult ballet?
Comfortable clothes that you can freely move in - tracksuits, leggings, etc. For the initial class you don't need to have ballet shoes you can just work in socks or bare feet. Adult split sole soft ballet shoes in either canvas or leather are recommended when you decide you are ready. Please ask Nicolle for details of where to purchase.
I used to do ballet as a child and would love to start again, can I enrole?
You would definitely be suited to the adult ballet classes, you will soon be able to remember all the steps you learned as a child and more besides with a dance foundation - muscles have very long memories! The classes are great fun and the music is carefully selected to add to the enjoyment. You'll be amazed how much you can learn.
Rym Kechacha from Northern Ballet Theatre's views on taking ballet class:
'Class can be a spiritual exercise. Rhythmical, almost ritualistic movement has been used as a form of meditation for thousands of years, and indeed the concentration required to get the most out of class can become like meditation. Even if one is not particularly 'in the mood' to do class the atmosphere is all encompassing. You become wrapped up in the details of what is being asked of your body, and there is a delight in the work that is hard to find but extremely precious once found... There is a unique joy to be gained from the light touch of one's hand on the barre and the harmonious sounds of piano music.'