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FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

Most of the answers to your frequently asked questions can be  found under the “Policies” listing in the About Us - Policies page.  In addition, below we provided 2 lists of FAQs. One list contains the TOP 10 QUESTIONS that YOU, the parent, DO ask. The second  list contains the TOP 10 QUESTIONS that YOU SHOULD ask.

Click on the question and find the answer.

Top 10 Questions
 You Do Ask

Top 10 Questions
 You Should  Ask

  1. What is the youngest age children can start to dance?
  2. When can parents watch class?
  3. Does my child participate in the recital?
  4. How many recitals will my child perform in?
  5. How long is the recital?
  6. When and where is the recital?
  7. Where can I purchase dance shoes and dancewear?
  8. What is "Dance Company" & how can my child join?
  9. How long is the dance year?
  10. What if my child does not wish to continue?

 

  1. Is the studio commercial or professional?
  2. What are the instructor's qualifications?
  3. Is a structured syllabus used?
  4. How old can a child be to begin serious ballet training?
  5. When can students go "on pointe"?
  6. Are combination classes offered?
  7. Are visits permitted to the studio?
  8. What is the studio's attitude toward recitals?
  9. Can I view a recital or performance video?
  10. Are recommendations available from professionals in the dance field?

   Top 10 Questions You Should  Ask

1. Is the studio commercial or professional?

  • A commercial dance studio is designed more for recreation and fun.  Classes are usually large and are set up as combinations of different disciplines.  Their main focus is on the recital. 

  • Professional studios have smaller classes and performance preparation is done at a minimum usually a few months before the performance.  The valuable class time is essentially spent on improving the technique necessary for students to make constant and continuous progress.

  • Tricia Sloan Dance Center is a PROFESSIONAL studio.

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2. What are the instructor's qualifications?

  • ALWAYS CHECK THE INSTRUCTOR’S QUALIFICATIONS.

  • It’s always important to make sure that your child’s instructors are qualified, especially where dancing is concerned.

  •  Dance instructors are not licensed in this country—anyone can claim to be able to teach your child to dance! Ask for information on the instructor’s background.

  • Look for someone who danced with a professional company, holds a degree in dance from an accredited college or university, or is certified to teach.

  • Whether it’s ballet, jazz, modern or tap there must be a comprehensive graded curriculum that is followed. This is a good indication that the instructor knows what to teach, when to teach it and how it should be taught.

  • At the Tricia Sloan Dance Center, all of our instructors must meet the above standards.

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3. Is a structured syllabus used?

  • A syllabus is a study guide that covers what a student should learn and when, as well as the way a step is taught.  All good dance schools use a syllabus as a guideline for teaching. 

  • Ask to see the syllabus that is used at the studio you are considering.  If they don’t have one you should consider going to another school.

  • At the Tricia Sloan Dance Center, our ballet syllabus is based on the British (Royal Academy) and Russian (Vagonova Technique).

  • The tap, jazz and modern syllabus are specifically designed for our students’ needs based on a set syllabus designed by leading dance teachers in that particular field.  It is constantly being refined and is updated every year.

  • All of the faculty of TSDC attend several conventions each year and regularly travel to NYC and Philadelphia to study and keep up with the latest trends in dance.

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4. How old can a child be to begin serious ballet training?

  • Any studio that actually claims to teach serious ballet to a child under 7 years of age is not one that you should consider.  Children younger than 7 are not physically or mentally ready for classical training.

  •  At TSDC children between the ages of 3 and 5 go into our Tiny Tots Program.  At ages 6 to 8 they enter the first levels of formal ballet training.

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5. When can students go "on pointe"?

  • There are three factors that determine when a young girl can begin pointe:  how much training she has had, her age and physical development.  A child should never be put on pointe before her feet have the required strength and the bone structure is well developed.  The average age is 11-12.  If the studio you are considering puts children younger than age 10 on pointe, you should reconsider. 

  • At TSDC students must have completed 3 years of ballet training meeting at least 2 times per week.  They must meet 4 physical & technical requirements before beginning pointe work.

  • You will be informed by the teacher when you are ready and she will personally have you fitted for the best size, style and brand of pointe shoes

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6. Are combination classes offered?

  • As a marketing technique, some schools offer classes that combine training in ballet with jazz, tap, gymnastics or baton—All in 60 minutes!  Think about it.  Would you expect your child to play the violin, piano and clarinet all in the same hour?  It’s not an effective or professional way to learn. 

  • At TSDC only one dance form is taught at a time. The exception is our Tiny Tots Program where 30 min. of ballet & tap is very acceptable.  It is very disappointing for students from other schools who are taught in this manner when they come here or participate in the Match Girl Ballet.  They soon discover how little they have learned and parents realize how much time and money they have wasted.

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7. Are visits permitted to the studio?

  • There has been a tremendous growth in the popularity of dance in the USA so now there are a great many schools to choose from.  However, there are no regulations and anyone can open a studio and call themselves a dance teacher.

  • Not every child is going to pursue dance as a career. But the courtesies and disciplines as well as the joy of movement will touch her forever.

  • For those students who are serious about pursuing dance further either in college or on the professional level have the best facility and faculty in the area to foster their talent. 

  • In addition to all the things you would normally look for (clean, well-equipped) check to make sure the floors are not over concrete.

  • We hope the information presented here helps you in your choice of dance studios for your child.

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8. What is the studio's attitude toward recitals?

  • An end of the year performance is important. It gives a young dancer valuable stage experience, as well as the opportunity to use what they have learned in class during the year.  Dance is, after all, a performing art!  But the real question here is how the school deals with the recital...not if they have one. 

  • Some schools put too much emphasis on the ‘recital dance’ starting soon after classes begin in September.  A child who spends most of her time learning a routine for a recital or a parade does not learn much about the technique of dance. 

  • At TSDC our year end performance is designed to compliment the child’s classroom training—not replace it. 

  • Out students also have the opportunity to participate in a full length story ballet,
    “The Nutcracker” if they desire. Rehearsals are held on the weekends during the Fall. 

  • Our dance troupe, "TSDC Dance Company", displays its talents many times throughout the year in community events, local and national level dance competitions, the Spring Showcase and the annual Nutcracker ballet.

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9. Can I view a recital or performance video?

  • Make sure the studio has and will permit you to view their past recitals and/or performances.  Be observant of the quality of the performance and especially the dance techniques displayed by the students.

  • Every production that the students from Tricia Sloan Dance Center perform in is professionally videotaped.  Copies of these performances such as the annual recital and the children’s ballets are available for you to see at the dance center. 

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10. Are recommendations available from professionals in the field?

  • The Tricia Sloan Dance Center has the endorsement from such professionals as dancers from the Pennsylvania Ballet Co., and several professional choreographers and teachers from New York and Philadelphia.  We will be happy to furnish you with these endorsements.

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  Top 10 Questions You Do Ask


1. What is the youngest age children can start to dance?

  • Children ages 2-3 years old may participate in Creative Dance Class (45 min.)

  • Children ages 3-5 years old may begin Ballet/Tap Combination Class (60 min.)

  • For all others children, teens and adults, whatever age your are is the perfect time to start!

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2. When can parents watch class?

  • Classes are normally closed to observers.  During the year we have parent weeks that allow you to come into class. 

  • Each studio is wired with closed circuit monitors and the class is in full view for parents waiting in the lobby.

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3. Does my child participate in the recital?

  • It is understood that all registered students in the Beginner Level thru Level 12 will participate in the June recital.  However, participation is not mandatory. 

  • The decision to not participate must be made known to TSDC in writing by December 15.

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4. How many recitals will my child perform in?

  • Beginner Level thru Level 2 participate in one Saturday afternoon matinee.

  • Level 3 thru 12 may appear in more than one show.

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5. How long is the recital?

  • We keep our recitals short, lively and entertaining. 

  • The Saturday afternoon matinee recitals are approximately 1 ¼ hours with NO intermission.

  • The evening recitals are approximately 2 ½ hours with a 10 minute intermission.

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6. When and where is the recital?

  • The recitals are held the last full week of June.  The location varies depending on the availability of the various auditoriums.

  • Past recitals have been help at West Deptford High School, Ptiman High School, Gloucester County College and Rowan University.

  • The 2006 Recital  is set for June 20 thru June 24 at Rowan University in the Tohill Auditorium. Specific times will be announced.

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7. Where can I purchase dance shoes and dancewear?

  • All dancewear, shoes and accessories are available to purchase at the Tricia Sloan Dance Center.
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8. What is "Dance Company" & how can my child join?

  • All dancers ages 8 and up are welcome to become a part of the "TSDC Dance Company".

  •  New members are accepted in September each year.

  • There are minimum class requirements for each age group.

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9. How long is the dance year?

  • The dance year runs from the 2nd week of September thru the last full week of June.
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10. What if my child does not wish to continue?

  • If you decide to withdrawal completely from all classes at TSDC then it is required that you fill out a 'withdrawal form'.

  • You will continue to be responsible for tuition payments until the time of the official withdrawal.

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Tricia Sloan Dance Center | 1 West Mantua Ave.| Wenonah, NJ 08090
Phone: (856) 464-0128
Copyright © 2005. Tricia Sloan Dance Center, LLC. All rights reserved.