High School
Departments & Courses, In Brief

High School Courses

Dance

The primary goal of the High School dance program is to expose students to dance, both as a physical discipline and as a creative and performing art. Our classes are designed to attract not only dancers, but also athletes wanting to move with greater ease and efficiency, actors desiring more physical expressivity and movement skill, and all those interested in exploring the world of dance.   We aim to educate and to inspire, to create dancers as well as dance appreciators, and to support students of all skill levels and interests to discover how dance and movement can enhance their lives. Special guest artists, workshops, and performances drawing upon the rich New York dance scene are integral to our program and enrich students’ experience.

REQUIREMENTS AND INFORMATION

All dance classes can fulfill a PE or an Art requirement. You decide which requirement you want your dance class to fulfill. You may take two dance classes at the same time, one for Art Credit and one for PE credit.

Most dance classes require participation while a student is engaged in afterschool sports, except for Body Conditioning and Zen Dance. In these two courses, as in PE, students are excused from class while they are engaged in their after school athletics, and return to class as soon as that sport is no longer in season. Student managers of team sports are not exempt from class during their particular season, even if they manage for two seasons.

Any student who has  been approved to receive credit for participation in athletics or dance that are outside of school must still be enrolled in a Physical Education or Dance class to receive credit. 

Exploring Dance Forms, Body Conditioning, and Zen Dance can be taken as Semester 1 or Semester 2 or Full Year courses. The Choreography of Technology is a Semester 2 course only.  All other dance courses run Full Year  and may not be dropped mid-year except to resolve a scheduling conflict with an academic subject. A student may be exempt from specific requirements only at the discretion of the Dance Department. 

The Dance Program is designed to provide a well-rounded background in the technical and creative aspects of dance as an art form.  Students who wish to pursue their dance education in greater depth or those who might apply to professional schools or colleges in dance should meet with the Dance Department Chair to discuss recommended courses. The ideal time to make the decision to concentrate in dance is often  at the end of the 9th grade year.  In this way, by the time a student chooses 10th grade courses, the student will know if they wish to place dance as a priority choice and prepare for participation in Dance Theater Workshop.

Recommended courses for the serious dance student

a. Contemporary Dance and Improvisation             1 year
b. Intermediate Dance Technique                             1- 2 years
c. Advanced Dance Technique                                  1- 2 years
d. Dance Theatre Workshop/Dance Production ‘A’ 1- 2 years
  • Dance Fusion

    This course is designed to engage students in a variety of dance experiences. We will study fundamental principles of Modern Dance, Ballet, Jazz, Musical Theater, and Dances of the African Diaspora.  As an introductory technique class, emphasis will be on establishing basic dance skills through cultural and historical perspectives. Guest artists and videos viewings will be incorporated into the course. Dance Fusion welcomes students of all levels. 

    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits
  • Hip Hop & African Dance

    This course is designed for students to explore Hip Hop Dance, its African Dance roots, and the popular dances of today that are derived from these forms. Special guest artists focusing on specific styles such as Street Dance, Popping, Locking, Breaking, Voguing, Waaking, Afrobeats and more will be featured. Students will develop rhythmic skill, musicality, stamina, coordination, and confidence as they build new dance vocabulary from traditional to pop  dance forms.  Open mixed level, everyone welcome!
    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits
  • C.D.I.: Contemporary Dance & Improv

    This course is  designed for the student who wants a challenging class in modern technique and improvisation. Through technical training and creative exploration, the students will work to develop their own movement vocabulary and style. Guest artists, video viewing, and trips to see professional dance performances are  integral to the course. This class is ideal for students interested in strengthening their technique and exploring the creative elements of dance.

    Prerequisite: Exploring Dance Forms, Dance Tech or Hip Hop & African Dance 
    Full Year Course, 1.0 credit

    Requires Preapproval
  • I.D.T.: Intermediate Dance Technique

    This class focuses specifically on developing greater skill as a dancer through an in-depth study of technique. The foundation of the course is a challenging technical class which integrates the study of a variety of modern dance styles, rigorous ballet work, and somatic practices (various conditioning methods).

    Prerequisite: Placement by approval of the Dance Department Chair
    Full Year Course, 1.0 credit

    Requires Preapproval
  • A.D.T.: Adv. Dance Technique

    This course is especially designed for the experienced dance student and will focus on the art of dance performance. Technical, improvisational and performance skills will be developed through an exploration of advanced dance theories, styles, and phrase work. There will be a focus on proper placement, centering and learning how to use the body most efficiently.
     
    Prerequisite: Contemporary Dance and Improvisation and Intermediate Dance Technique 
    Full Year Course, 1.0 credit

    Requires Preapproval
  • Dance Theatre Workshop/Dance Production 'A'

    This course provides an opportunity to learn the art of performance, the craft of choreography, and other essential elements of dance production such as: costuming, lighting, sound. First semester, students study the art of composing movement through an exploration of the tools of composition: dynamics, design, structure, and thematic development. Working in a laboratory situation, they will choreograph solos, duets, and larger group pieces. The major focus of the second semester will be the production of a full-length concert dance performance.  A minimum of 3 hours per week of after-school dance rehearsal time is required in addition to other production work. Throughout the year, students will attend live performances, view dance on film, and attend a 2-day dance retreat at the end of first semester.
     
    Prerequisite: Contemporary Dance and Improvisation 
    Placement by Audition 
    Full Year Course, 1.0 credit

    Requires Preapproval 
  • Body Conditioning

    This course is designed to develop a healthy body that is flexible, strong, and well-coordinated.  Class begins with a set of non-stop warm-ups & aerobics followed by rigorous arm and leg work.  Students will also concentrate on floorwork to shape and tone muscles. Class ends with a cool down and relaxation. The course will include methods of stretch, strength, and cardiovascular fitness. This is a demanding class, however students will finish each session feeling alert and energetic!

    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits
  • Body Conditioning

    This course is designed to develop a healthy body that is flexible, strong and well-coordinated.  Class begins with a set of non-stop warm-ups & aerobics followed by rigorous arm and leg work.  Students will also concentrate on a series of floor repetitions to shape and tone muscles. Class ends with a cool down and relaxation. The course will include methods of stretch, strength and cardiovascular fitness. This is a demanding class, however students will finish each session feeling alert and energetic!

    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits


  • Zen Dance

    This course focuses on building a strong foundation for proper centering and control while serving as a method to reduce student stress. Through different disciplines including yoga, meditation, Pilates, and restorative techniques, students will experience body-based movement practices that foreground self-awareness. Units in chi gong, tai chi and karate will also be introduced by visiting guest teachers. This class is designed for both beginner and advanced students who are interested in developing a healthy body and a calmer approach to everyday stresses. Most every participant develops a clearer focus both in and outside of class.

    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits
  • The Choreography of Technology

    In this course, students will choose human movement (either artistic or functional) and program a humanoid robot to do that behavior as realistically as possible. In order to do so, they will need to learn about how the human body moves, the neuroscience behind why we make emotional connections to inanimate objects, and the basics of robotic control systems. The class will meet during the school day and students will schedule time with the robot after school at build sessions. Previous programming and/or dance experience is not required, but students with expertise will have the opportunity to use it.

    *cross-listed with Engineering

    Prerequisite: Robotics, Computer Science 1, OR a Dance Department course 
    Spring Semester Course, 0.50 credits

    Requires Preapproval
  • IS: Dance

    Independent studies are opportunities for 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students to pursue ideas and passions not covered by current course work.  

    Students must complete this form to apply for preapproval.

    Requires Preapproval
    Graded Pass/Fail
    Fall or Spring Semester Course, 0.25 credits
  • Dance and Social Media

    This course takes a multilayered and contemporary approach to dance through the lens of social media. Students will explore various dance forms while creating short form videos that draw inspiration from content on social media platforms. Class will provide an active space to explore dance, collaboration, creative and responsible curation, and community both in the studio and on an in-house digital media platform. Dance and Social Media offers all students the chance to learn about dance while cultivating agency and quick decision-making through the synthesis of dance, culture, and technology.
  • Dance Fusion

    fundamental principles of Modern Dance, Improvisation, Jazz, Musical Theater, Hip-hop  Ballet, and Dances of the African Diaspora.  As an introductory class, emphasis will be on establishing dance skills through cultural, and creative perspectives.  Guest artists and videos viewings will be incorporated into the course. Dance Fusion welcomes students of all levels. 

    Prerequisite: None

    Full Year Course (Trimesters 1 & 3), 0.50 credits
  • Exploring Dance Forms

    This course focuses on activating social dance spaces. Students will explore learning various dance styles, participatory exercises, and moments of group collaboration. The curriculum continually shifts each year and  includes forms such as Swing, House, Soca, Tango, Afro-Fusion, Capoeira, Contact Improvisation, and other dances from around the world. Special guest artists and video viewing will be featured. We encourage students to enroll who may be newcomers to dance and invite everyone to bring their respective artistic and cultural backgrounds into the class as contributing elements. Exploring Dance Forms will provide a supportive environment in which students collectively discover their best selves and have fun in the process.

    Prerequisite: None
    Full Year Course, 0.50 credits
  • I.D.T.: Intermediate Dance Technique

    This class focuses specifically on developing greater skill as a dancer through an in-depth study of technique. The foundation of the course is a challenging technique class which meets twice a week for an hour and 15 minutes. The class will integrate the study of a variety of modern dance styles, rigorous ballet work, and somatic practices (various conditioning methods).

    Requires Preapproval
    Prerequisite: Placement by approval of the Dance Department Chair
    Full Year Course, 1.0 credit

Faculty

  • Photo of Joanna Brotman
    Joanna Brotman
    MS and HS Dance Teacher and K-12 Dance Department Chair
    Oberlin College - B.A.
    Laban Institute of Movement Studies - C.M.A.
  • Photo of Randi Sloan
    Randi Sloan
    Performing Arts Coordinator & Dance Teacher
    Wayne State University - B.F.A.
    University of Michigan
    New York University - M.A.
  • Photo of Jinah Parker
    Jinah Parker
    Dance Teacher
    State University of New York at Buffalo - B.A.
    New York University - M.A.
  • Photo of Blake Pearson
    Blake Pearson
    Middle and High School Dance Teacher
    Virginia Commonwealth University - B.F.A., Magna Cum Laude
  • Kiana Robinson
    Student Dance Teacher
  • Photo of Andre Zachery
    Andre Zachery
    MS/HS Dance Teacher
(Grades K-3) 53 East 91st Street
New York, NY 10128
General: (212) 423-5200 | Admissions: (212) 423-5463
General: info@dalton.org | Admissions: fpadmissions@dalton.org

(Gr. 4 Dalton East & PE Center) 200 East 87th Street
New York, NY 10128
General: (212) 423-5200 | Admissions: (212) 423-5361
General: info@dalton.org | Admissions: admissionsmshs@dalton.org

(Grade 5-12) 108 East 89th Street
New York, NY 10128
General: (212) 423-5200 | Admissions: (212) 423-5262
General: info@dalton.org | Admissions: admissionsmshs@dalton.org