A good dance teacher will not only be able to structure a great class, but they will be willing to learn as they are teaching. Teaching is hard work, and great teachers will work tirelessly to create a challenging and nurturing environment in the class. To be a good teacher you must be must be willing to give and be committed.

Great teaching comes from our attitude towards our students, our passion for our subject of dance and our knowledge.

The best teachers are people who will inspire the students, this is such an important quality. A great dance teacher will inspire students to believe that they are capable of doing more, to try harder, to go that extra mile, to give them the confidence that they can try something. Part of inspiring other people is to make people think in a way that they might not otherwise think on their own.

Being an inspiring teacher in dance, is being an artist and to help the students appreciate dance in terms of dance as an art form.

In the classroom there is a two way relationship, teacher to pupil and also pupil to teacher. A good lesson will engage the co-operation and the interest of the class.

A great teacher will create a sense of community and belonging in the classroom, this will provide a supportive and collaborative teaching environment. Each of the students should feel an important part of the class. Make sure that your students know that they can depend on not only you but the other members of the class. This is of course important in a group dance work when the class is working as team to create a performance piece.

A great teacher is warm, accessible, enthusiastic and caring. You want to know that your students to feel they can come to you with any problems they are having with learning new steps, technique, concert work etc. Often we will need to give up a little extra of our time and give additional coaching or training.

Be prepared for every class, know exactly what you plan to get through that lesson, even if that plan changes with the class. You need to be flexible when a lesson is not working or when you can see something else needs attention. You may need to find new ways to present your information if you don’t seem to be getting through to a particular class.

Traits of a great dance teacher;

  • Has a love for young people and enjoys working with them

  • Finds emotional satisfaction in teaching

  • Has great drive

  • Has enthusiasm

  • Is emotionally stable and mature

  • Is generous in approval

  • Gets on well with others

  • If fair and impartial

  • Has a good sense of humour

  • Is patient and fair

  • Is even tempered

  • Can accept all kinds of personalities

  • Identifies with the students

  • Treats people as individuals

  • Plans work in a methodical manner

  • States fact but does not judge

  • Is systematic

  • Helps individual students

  • Uses discipline when necessary

Teaching hints!

  • Always be prompt

  • Show confidence in what you are delivering

  • Be generous with praise

  • Never teach with sarcasm, insult or punishment

  • Motivate and stimulate your students

  • Respect the students

  • Use humour where appropriate

  • Give clear, careful instructions

  • Speak slowly and never with back to students

  • Call students by name, learn the name of all your students

  • Give students the opportunity to practice what they have learnt

  • Make sure the students have physical comfort, heating, air-conditioning, lighting, ventilation.

  • Question students individually

  • Establish a regular routine