This most comprehensive and user-friendly teaching manual contains a complete, progressive scheme of work for dance for Reception and Key Stage 1 and comes with its own especially composed music on 3 CDs. The 12 units of work (each with 6 or 7 lesson plans) contain 76 lesson plans that progress and develop 40 dances through 49 pieces of music.
The teaching guide gives practical and definite guidance on planning, teaching styles and strategies, choosing and using stimuli for dance, and suggestions for additional forms of accompaniment. It describes the movement material or language of dance, examines the essential aspects of composing, performing and appreciating, and describes how dances are made. Dance activities appropriate for each age group are linked to National Curriculum requirements. Minimum Expected Standards are identified and assessment sheets provided.
Teaching material has been organised to form a complete and detailed scheme comprising 4 units of work (24 or more lesson plans) for each year group, however, flexibility is also built in to allow, for example, the use of dances for reception to be used for Year 1 with more detail of movement or working with a partner. The whole scheme has been written to develop childrenís knowledge, skills and understanding, in a progressive manner. Learning Objectives, Expected Learning Outcomes and dance frameworks clarify planning and focus learning. The lesson plans are written in great detail so they can be used immediately as they stand or adapted to suit the expertise or teaching style of the teacher or the attitude and ability of the class.
All lesson plans have been tried and tested, however, the rate at which individual classes progress may be very different. Whatever the rate of progress there will always be more than enough material in each lesson plan for one lesson and indeed, in some cases, could be extended to 2 or even 3 lessons. This abundance of lesson material allows a teacher to choose to deliver, say 4 from 6 dance lessons from a unit for a topic being worked on at the time, then revisit the unit later for the unused lesson material. Throughout the manual there are an additional 32 pages of ideas for dance stimuli and related activities. Many of these activities have photocopiable masters in the appendices.
There is a range of styles of music, 12 traditional pieces of music and 37 pieces specially designed for the dances. There are:- simple, complex, orchestral, funky and music for story telling, some with special sound effects, in fact a whole range.
The dances arise from a wide range of stimuli; tactile, weather, story, poem, music etc. The dances gradually progress from individual through to pair and some small group dances generating creative and imaginative ideas. Foundation Stage dances are also provided with suggestions for linked classroom activities. Throughout the manual, skills and movement materials are obviously repeated, revised and extended in different creative situations. This enables children to improve the quality and depth of their performances and extend their knowledge and understanding. A gradual development of choreographic awareness and understanding of the language of dance will enable children to observe and appreciate each otherís work and describe what they see and feel, using appropriate vocabulary.
Very many thanks are due to Glynis Yates, Physical Education Consultant, and Carolyn Robson, Traditional Folk Song and Dance Artist, for their invaluable inputs and opinions in various parts of this manual and music. Thanks are also due to the other musicians, Lincoln Noel, Neil Shepherd, Jacob Grant, Lisa Kegan and Winston Samuels, who have patiently and professionally composed and performed through the changes and progressions necessary to reach the levels that children can access, be enthused by, and be happy to develop with.
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