Dance teacher

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Dance teachers train and develop their pupils in all types of dance.

Salary range: Variable

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How to become a dance teacher

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • working towards this role
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University

You’ll need a relevant degree in dance or performing arts. To teach in a state school you’ll need qualified teacher status (QTS).

As a primary teacher, you would be trained to teach all subjects, but may develop a subject specialism in physical education, which could include dance or creative movement.

At secondary level you could get the opportunity to teach dance as a single subject or combined with other subjects like physical education, drama or performing arts.

To be a lecturer in a university you’ll need a postgraduate qualification or a recognised profile as a professional performer, and teaching experience.

To train as a private dance teacher, you’ll need to complete a recognised professional qualification. There are some degrees in dance that include teacher training.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths
  • 3 A levels or equivalent

More information

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College

You’ll need at least a level 3 qualification in performing arts dance or higher, if you want to teach, for example in a further education college.

You would also need a teaching qualification that is relevant to the level of teaching responsibility you’ll have in your job.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

More information

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Work

You could work your way into this role if you’ve got several years’ experience in dance.

You could start as an assistant in a private dance school and do teaching qualifications with a relevant dance organisation.

The Council for Dance, Drama and Musical Theatre has a list of approved awarding organisations.

More information

Registration

Career tips

You can search for jobs in schools through the Teaching Vacancies service.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a dance teacher from:

You can also find out more about working in creative careers from Discover Creative Careers.

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What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • knowledge of the fine arts
  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • knowledge of English language
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • leadership skills
  • the ability to teach pupils how to do something
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

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What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day activities will include:

  • showing students how to warm up and move safely
  • demonstrating how to perform dance moves
  • designing dance pieces and performances
  • keeping records of students’ performance and progress
  • providing feedback to students
  • entering students for dance exams
  • maintaining your own dance skills and techniques

Working environment

You could work in the community, in a theatre, in a creative studio or at a school.

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Career path and progression

In a school you could become a head of department or headteacher.

You could also move into choreography or dance movement psychotherapy, with further training.

As a private dance teacher you could develop your own business and run your own dance school.