DAN 135, 136, 137 Course Syllabus

Advanced Beginning Ballet I, II, and III

Course Description

Advanced Beginning Ballet I, II and III is a continuation of Beginning Ballet for Majors. It places greater emphasis on building technique at a low intermediate level to prepare dance majors for Advanced Beginning Ballet II and intermediate ballet as well as to transfer into fouryear degree programs. In this course, ballet technique and vocabulary will be presented through breath and flow with an emphasis on improving anatomical awareness and alignment, developing musical sensitivity, and using dance as a form of expression.

Curricula For Which This Course Is Required:

This is an advanced beginning level course with a prerequisite of beginning ballet or permission of the instructor. It fulfills a requirement for the dance major degree program.

Educational Objective

Educational Objectives
Educational Objective Brief description of course activities which help students to meet each of the educational objectives
A. Communicate effectively through viewing dance, writing, listening, and speaking Students will write a one to two page personal goals essay and a one to two page personal evaluation paper.
B. Work collaboratively in diverse groups directed at accomplishing learning objectives Students will be paired with their peers in the classroom and instructed to give each other feedback on corrections discussed in class.
C. Apply aesthetic and intellectual criteria in the evaluation or creation of works in the humanities or the arts Students will be given various techniques in ballet that they will perform in the class.
D. Integrate knowledge and skills in their program of study Each section (adagio, petite allegro, grand allegro) of the class culminates in a phrase that allows students to integrate the techniques learned in class as well as achieve an in depth knowledge of the course material while also working on performance quality.

Course Objectives: Desired Student Learning

  1. Students will have an increased body awareness and improved alignment
  2. Students will understand and execute ballet vocabulary on a basic/low intermediate level.
  3. Students will be able to accurately apply advanced beginning ballet terminology in written and oral communication
  4. Students will increase their musical sensitivity, working in 3/4 and 4/4 meters.
  5. Students will gain an appreciation and understanding of ballet performance.
  6. Students will learn how to look at, discuss, and write about ballet performance
  7. Students will demonstrate self-awareness and awareness of others when performing and engaging in group activities.
  8. Students will learn the sequence of Ballet barre and center exercises and execute these at the advanced beginning/low intermediate level.
  9. Students will learn to move from their centers and dance with core stability
  10. Students will learn to use the power of a grounded plié to move across the floor
  11. Students will understand and be able to execute safe jumping and landing mechanics in Ballet
  12. Students will learn to articulate their feet
  13. Students will learn to coordinate upper and lower bodies in dancing Ballet.
  14. Students will learn to use breath as an element in Ballet dancing.
  15. Students will learn to express themselves in Ballet dancing
  16. Students will learn to shift their weight and balance on one leg.

Summary of Main Topics Covered in the Course:

  1. Anatomical Alignment
  2. Ballet Vocabulary
  3. Meaning of Ballet Vocabulary in both French and English
  4. Ballet Barre Exercises
  5. Ballet Center Exercises
  6. Technique
  7. Musicality/Rhythmic Sensitivity
  8. Ballet Performance
  9. Moving through space

Course Policies

Attendance Policy:

Attend classes. Be on time. Attendance is extremely important to your individual growth, progress in dance skills and understanding of the class material. Each student is allowed one absence that will not affect his/her grade. After that each absence lowers the amount of points a student receives for this evaluation category. Students with 7 or more absences will fail the course- no exception! Arriving late and/or leaving early or coming to class unprepared will result in a lower final grade. Note: Remember that lateness is a sign of disrespect of you and me. Be on time. Be prepared with your dance attire. Otherwise, two late arrivals and/or two non-participations of any kind (i.e. no dance attire) will count as one absence- no exception!

Attendance Scale

Attendance Scale
Absences Grade Percentage
0-1 Absence 100%
2 Absences 90%
3 Absences 80%
4 Absences 70%
5 Absences 60%
6 Absences 50%
7 Absences fail the course

Note: All absences will be considered in the final grade, however, for extreme emergencies (i.e. extended hospital stay) an “Incomplete” grade will be considered and discussed with the student. Save your absences for when you really need them. The development of the body instrument and the material in class accumulates. Learn to enjoy the discipline and weekly demands of attendance. Furthermore, the material learned in class cannot be replicated outside of class.not possible to make up any missed classes.
Tardy and Observation Policy

Tardiness will not be tolerated. Two tardies equal one absence. If you leave class early it will be counted as a tardy. The class is structured to build and prepare the body for movement. Missing the warm-up could result in injury. If you are ill or have an injury you may observe class. However, two observations equal one absence. If you develop a serious injury or illness during the semester you should withdraw completely from the class.

Required Dance Attire:

Students must wear appropriate dance attire. Leotards and tights or a tight fitting top and dance pants are acceptable. Jeans or any type of pants that button and zip are not acceptable. Baggy clothes are not acceptable. The professor must be able to see the alignment of the dancer. No loose hair! If you have long hair, it must be pulled back! No Jewelry!

Methods of Student Evaluation

  1. Attendance. 20% of your final grade. See scale above
  2. Personal Goals and Self Evaluation Paper: 10% of your final grade. See guidelines below.
  3. Reflective Journal: 10% of your final grade. Each student will keep a reflective journal as part of this course. The journal is a place to formalize your thinking about the material in the course and reflect on your experience in class and in practice outside of class. You are required to do at least two entries per week in the journal. After each class meeting I will give you a prompt to stimulate your thinking for the journal. Your response for that day could relate to my prompt but also may include other issues from that class including: corrections you received, things you are working on, notations about approaches to an exercise that helped or didn't, discussions about difficulties with an exercise, specific vocabulary, new steps or sequences that you need to remember or practice etc. The journals will be collected at midterm on March 14 and before the finals on May 18. They will be graded on the basis of their content. I am looking for discussion that is thoughtful, honest and reflects a true commitment to the process of developing dance skills. I am not concerned with the writing being formally structured. This is a place to play with ideas. I do need to be able to read it, so it should be in legible and comprehensible English. I will not however, take points off for grammar errors or spelling errors. It can be typed or written by hand, but it needs to be legible. Also this is not a personal life journal. This is a journal about your modern dance class. Please limit your discussion to things relevant to your building of your dance skills.
  4. Growth, Progress, and Development -20% of your final grade. Being fully present, concentrated and ready to work in class is essential. Corrections you receive should be applied in subsequent classes. Take responsibility for your own growth as a dancer. Ask for help when you need it. Present yourself professionally in proper dance attire. At this level, the dancer should be able to self-correct in class.
  5. Mid-term evaluation: 20% of your final grade. Midterm will be on 3/28. On the midterm day class will start as usual. For the final combination students will learn a new movement phrase and perform it for evaluation and video documentation. Students will schedule a one-to-one conference with the Professor to view the video and discuss their progress and goals. You must schedule an appointment to discuss your performance on the midterm. Failure to schedule a time to discuss the midterm will severely hurt your grade.
  6. Final Movement Exam: 20% of your final grade. The final movement exam phrase will be a phrase that we will work on for several weeks prior to the final exam class. On the day of the final exam, we will do a warm up, and then you will perform the final phrase in small groups, and you will be graded on your integration of class material and your progress and you will be video taped.

Grading Standards:

A grade of A is given for superlative work that demonstrates a profound commitment to the course material, and further, that goes on to employ this material as a springboard for independent thought and work.

A grade of B is given for very good work that completely fulfills all the requirements of the course in a conscientious and dedicated manner, and that demonstrates mastery of the course content

A grade of C is given for work that fulfills all the requirements of the course in a satisfactory manner, but that falls short of demonstrating rigor and mastery.

A grade of D is given for work that is unsatisfactory

A grade of F is given for work that fails to fulfill the requirements of the course as listed above.

Written Papers

Guidelines for Personal Goals and Self Evaluation Papers

For this class you will be doing two papers. Each should be one to two pages, typed and doubled spaced.

Assignment 1: Personal Goals

Each dancer has her/his own individual path of development. This writing assignment is aimed at focusing your work in this class (and your other movement classes this semester) so that you can get the most out of the experience. You are going to pick either two or three dance skills that you would like to improve on this semester and explain them for the reader. Your paper should start with an introduction. This is where you can explain any background information about your training history, injuries, ambitions etc. (You do not need to explain your entire dance background here. Please summarize and focus on what skills you have been developing rather than sharing past achievements.) The introduction will be followed by the body of the essay. In the body you will thoroughly explain what dance skills you plan to focus on. You can use corrections you have received in this class or previous classes as guidelines or you can choose areas you personally feel you need improvement from your own observations. You can also ask for input from the instructor. Some possible areas of focus include: Developing core support and moving from your center Correcting alignment issues (such as head forward, pelvis tilted forward or back, hyperextended knees, feet sickling, spine tilted, ribs forward, sitting into a hip etc.) Developing flow Increasing musical sensitivity Improving spatial awareness Moving boldly across the floor Integrating your focus with your dancing Using the upper body bore fully Finding better articulation in the feet Developing turn out support Improving balance Improving balon (elevation in jumping) Clarifying line Working with symmetry in the pelvis Grounding Releasing unnecessary tension Picking up movement phrases more quickly Phrasing Many others you can think of

In the body of the essay completely explain which skills you plan to focus on and why. If you will do special work on this area outside of class explain this. To conclude your essay, explain how these skills will impact your overall dancing

Assignment 2: Self Evaluation

In this essay you will reflect on your work over the course of the term. You will use your areas of focus from writing assignment one as a starting point in this discussion. You can also use the writing in your journal as material for discussion. Did you work on the areas you wrote about in the goals essay? What specifically did you do in class and outside of class to address those skills? What have you experienced yourself doing in class that lets you know if you did or did not make progress with those skills? Were there other ways in which your dancing grew over the semester? Does the class leave you with goals for continued growth in your next dance classes?

Studio/Practical Exams

Midterm Exam. On the day of the midterm exam, class will begin as usual with a warm up. The final combination will be a new one taught that day and performed in small groups and videotaped. You will be evaluated on your performance of the midterm phrase relative to your dance skills from the beginning of the term. You are required to meet with the Professor after the midterm to review the video and discuss your work in class. This is a good time to reflect on the work you have done so far and restate or revise your goals for the rest of the semester.

Final Exam. We will be learning the final movement project during the several weeks prior to the final exam day. On the day of the final exam, class will begin as usual with a warm up. You will review and perform the final movement project one last time on the exam day in small groups. It will be videotaped and graded relative to your progress throughout the term.

Important Dates Personal Goals essay First Collection of the Journals Midterm Exam Second collection of Journals Self Evaluation Papers Final Exam

Academic Integrity

Forms of Academic Integrity Violations

Violations of academic integrity can occur in a number of ways. Acts of academic dishonesty include (the complete listing with definitions and examples is included in the main body of the QCC Academic Integrity code):

  • Plagiarism: the inclusion of someone else's words, ideas or data as one's own work without acknowledging the source
  • Fabrication: the use of invented information or the falsification of research or other findings
  • Cheating: an act or an attempted act of deception by which students seek to misrepresent that they have mastered information on an academic exercise that they have not mastered.
  • Academic Misconduct: any act to gain an undue academic benefit for oneself or to cause academic harm to another

Any other serious violations of academic integrity as established by the professor.

Reasonable Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable academic accommodations if determined eligible by the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSSD). Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility from the OSSD. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with the OSSD staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Cell Phone Policy Cell phones are to be put on silence during class. Phones may be used in class only in the case of a true emergency and with the permission of the instructor. Please do any emergency texting or calling discreetly: leave the room to call, or text from the side of the room without disrupting class.

Health: Please report any injuries or health concerns that might affect your participation to me, including chronic (but seemingly minor) aches and pains.

PLEASE NOTE: During the teaching process, in order to engender correct alignment and coordination, it may be beneficial to the student for me to touch the student at various body parts: arms, hands, chest, lower back, abdomen, neck, legs, feet, etc. If you do not wish to be touched, please inform me at the beginning of the semester and your wishes will be respected.

Campus Cultural Centers

Kupferberg Holocaust Center (KHC)Opens in a new window
Kupferberg Holocaust Center Opens in a new window

Using the lessons of the Holocaust to educate current and future generations about the ramifications of unbridled prejudice, racism and stereotyping.

Queensborough Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window
QPAC: Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window

QPAC is an invaluable entertainment company in this region with a growing national reputation. The arts at QPAC continues to play a vital role in transforming lives and building stronger communities.

Queensborough Art GalleryOpens in a new window
QCC Art GalleryOpens in a new window

The QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York is a vital educational and cultural resource for Queensborough Community College, the Borough of Queens and the surrounding communities.