The Dance Department at Chesterfield High School enables students to explore the use of actions, dynamics, space and relationships in the three areas of study of performance, choreography and dance appreciation. Students learn to appreciate and value images, concepts and ideas within dance. In choreography and performance, pupils reflect critically on their own and other people’s work, judging quality, value and meaning. They learn to think and act as dancers and choreographers, working creatively and intelligently.

Some of the topics covered at Key Stage 3:

Year 7: basic actions, different use of stimuli and the use of space – learning whilst creating dance to improve coordination skills and develop students’ choreographic devices.

Year 8: looking at professional dance works in a range of styles. Students learn to appreciate dance in order to develop cultural and historical understanding of dance as well as technical and performance skills.

Equivalent in size to one GCSE Level.

A two year course which is designed to enable students to develop knowledge, skills and understanding of the process of creation, plus the ability to interpret image, ideas and concepts within dance.

Students will achieve their grade through performance, choreographic and appreciation skills through their own work and through the study of professional dance works.

Solo and group choreography, technical studies and group performances are explored during year 9 -this enables students to identify styles and techniques most suited to them individually. These are then explored further in Years 10 and 11.

Students are also required to write a letter of application to an externally set brief as part of the qualification.

Unit 1: Individual Showcase

In this unit students need to be filmed performing two solos that ‘contrast’. The examination board will set a brief for the dances to explore, that must be researched.


Students will need to write a letter of application suitable for the brief which discusses why they have chosen the two solos. Skills and experience need to be evaluated in Performing Arts.


Unit 2: Preparation, Performance and Production

In this unit students will be given two briefs by the teacher and students will need to conduct research in order to create and perform a short dance.


Unit 4: Dance Skills

In this unit students will develop dance technique in different styles of dance. They will also evaluate their progress and set targets for improvement.



The current specification studied within KS 5:

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate

Equivalent in size to one A Level.

BTEC Performing Arts is a practical approach to the study of dancing.

Students will have the opportunity to work with professionals within the performing arts industry as well as working with younger students.

The course is made up of 3 mandatory units and two optional units.


Continuous assessment occurs over two years.  From 2017 students have to complete three mandatory units as indicated above. Two of these units are externally examined by Pearson. Unit 1 is a 2000 word essay completed in controlled conditions and Unit 3 is a practical examination which is filmed and sent to the examining board. The other two units are internally assessed with the use of log books and video evidence of the process and final performance in at least two different styles.


Mandatory units that students are required to complete are:

Unit 1 Investigating practitioners’ work

Unit 2 Developing skills and techniques for live performance

Unit 3 Group performance project

Optional units are chosen from a wide selection. Examples of optional units include :

Jazz Dance Technique

Street Dance Technique

Contemporary Dance Technique

  • Year 7 dance club Wednesday lunch time
  • Year 8 – Thursday after school,
  • Master class – year 9, 10 and selected students from years 7 and 8.
  • Empire Theatre technical rehearsals/various shows/CHET/Disneyland Paris/New York
  • Wally Cain performance at Southport Theatre, Culture and Diversity performance at Civic Hall
  • Curriculum days