Dauntsey’s School in Wiltshire has altered its dance offering in the face of Covid-19 restrictions to keep the popular activity going.
Classes are now non-contact and mixed age group clubs have been suspended, with single year group sessions replacing these specialised groups. Many sessions are now being held outside, making the most of the school’s large campus.
The school’s head of dance explained how they are making up for no longer being able to hold a dance show.
“Instead of the usual lower school dance show, we are planning a film showcasing pupils’ work this year,” said Emily Wilkins.
“The theme is movies and pupils are busy choosing film locations, costumes and learning editing skills, as well as the usual choreography. Planning the film has created a real buzz of excitement. It’s definitely something we will do again, even when we are no longer in Covid restrictions.”
Planning the film has created a real buzz of excitement. It’s definitely something we will do again, even when we are no longer in Covid restrictions – Emily Wilkins, Dauntsey’s School
Wilkins said restrictions have encouraged the school to “broaden” their offering and add different skills which weren’t available to pupils before.
“Dance is fantastic for getting young people moving and having fun. It’s beneficial for mental health and encourages pupils to connect with their creative side. It builds confidence and trust and allows pupils to take on leadership roles in teaching and choreography,” she added.
Dance has grown dramatically in popularity at the school, with three pupils recently going on to join dance schools. It is on the curriculum for all first and second formers, and pupils can take it as a GCSE and A-level option.
There are other opportunities to enjoy dance and classes are open to experienced dancers and those who are new to this discipline. Street, modern dance, contemporary and ballet are all popular sessions at the school.