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Dance Syllabus
Posted by denisegibson
8/8/2012  9:07:00 AM
Which dance syllabus does ballroomdancers.com use for the Latin and ballroom dances?
Re: Dance Syllabus
Posted by Administrator
8/11/2012  9:28:00 PM
Hi Denise,

The international syllabus is based loosely on the ISTD, with some minor adjustments and splashes of IDTA here and there.

Our American style syllabus is our own, and we're extremely proud of it. Here's a quick bit of history:

In 1994, frustrated with the lack of a quality American style syllabus available in the U.S., we began to write our own. After a few years of revisions, we had what we believed was the highest quality syllabus, both in composition and technique, and wanted to share it with the world. And so BallroomDancers.com was born.

BallroomDancers.com began in 1997 as a few simple web pages of written syllabus, and nothing more. As the years went on, we branched out into other areas, and soon we had a variation of the week, classified ads, a message board, and an online store to sell dance products. The website production took center stage, and for a few years the syllabus sat on the back-burner. But recently we took a renewed interest in the syllabus, and we've been working at it furiously ever since.

For the last two years we have focused heavily on the video production, and we are continuing to this day. Videos are being produced in two layers, the first layer being simple, narrated demonstrations and the second being full length instructional videos. Having now completed the syllabus through full silver with the simple narrated clips, we are going back to bronze and starting the second layer: Full instruction videos.

The written content is also being rolled out in two layers. The first layer is simple written descriptions in paragraph form (with some diagrams and photos sprinkled in here and there), along with man's and lady's parts broken down in chart form. The charts in this first layer are very basic, with four columns: (1) Step number, (2) count, (3) description / foot positions, and (4) notes. When this is completed through full silver, hopefully by year's end, we will go back and begin at bronze with layer 2: Full technical charts. These will feature additional columns such as footwork, rise & fall, sway, CBM, etc.

For both videos and written content, the second layer will not replace the first. We will keep the simple narrated demo videos along with the full instructional ones. Likewise, we will keep the simple 4-column charts along with the detailed technical charts, and let the user decide which he or she prefers.

Regards,
Jonathan Atkinson
www.ballroomdancers.com
Re: Dance Syllabus
Posted by billymarsh
9/26/2012  6:14:00 AM
I'm in intermediate/ grade6 and I was wondering if there's a website to find the syllabus online?
Re: Dance Syllabus
Posted by Administrator
9/26/2012  9:22:00 AM
There is... right here!

Go to the Learning Center > Learn the Dances. Select a dance, then scroll past the dance description to the section of the page that has two tabs: "Featured Steps" and "Complete Syllabus". Click on the syllabus tab, and you will see a complete syllabus for that dance.

We have 22 dances including American and International style, ballroom and Latin, plus a few social dances. Different dances have slightly different configurations, but they all have 4 to 9 levels (mostly 6), with as many as 50 steps. All written content is free to the public, as are the videos for the first level. You can also view the videos for the second level by opening up a free user account. Videos for levels 3 and above require premium membership.

Regards,
Jonathan Atkinson
www.ballroomdancers.com
Re: Dance Syllabus
Posted by billymarsh
9/27/2012  12:42:00 PM
I make students keep a picture like this in their notebook.

If your feet are on the paper at the top in the empty space... and the book says you turn 3/8 to the right then when you finish that step your stepping foot and body* will be on the line that is labeled 3/8.

Each time you take a step you have to start over in the empty space at the top.

Sometimes I take sidewalk chalk and draw this life size in the floor at the studio (or if the studio owner is really uptight I go outside on the sidewalk). And students can actually SEE the rotation ratios they are making.
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