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Davenport School of the Arts
 Dance Department

Welcome Mrs. Carlow's Dance Majors!!

Below is some helpful information to remember through the year.

All Classes

  • Please remember to wear your dance attire under your school uniform (this will allow the maximum amount of time to spend with you dancing).
  • Hair must be in a secured bun and bobby pins or hair pins DAILY. A dancers instrument is her full body from head to toe. Short hair should be pulled back with clips or a headband. **No Weaves, Extensions, and Braids as when placed in a bun it interferes with dancing and them concentrating on technique. No hair beads because they are dangerous to the dance instrument. (Specifically floor work).
  • Please leave jewelry at home with the exception of studded earrings.
  • Please see our Department policy regarding Nail Polish.
  • Please keep finger nails and toe nails short and not pointy. No Pre ss On Nails!!! 
  • Body sprays, perfumes and scented lotions are prohibited inside our building due to students with severe allergies. Please use these items outside in a well ventilated area away from students.
  • Cell Phones are to be off and kept in their book bags during class.
  • Bathrooms are to be used before entering the locker room.
  • All school wide policies apply in the arts.


  • 1st and 3rd  classes will only have 7 minutes in the locker room. It is important to be on time for class as pre-class warm up is part of their curriculum this year.
  • The rest of the dance classes are 45 minutes and will only have 3 minutes in the locker room.
  • All dancers must use and lock their lockers at the end of each class.
  • It is highly recommended for dancers to keep dance shoes, leotards, pink and black tights, deodorant, hairnet, bobby pins or hair pins, pencils and dance note book locked in their locker. Please have dancers keep extra hair ties in their locker in case one breaks.

Parent/Teacher Contact

I encourage parent communication and would love to speak with you to answer any questions or concerns. The best and fastest way to communicate with me is through my e-mail at [email protected]. If you would like face to face contact or a phone call, you can make an appointment with me between 8:05a-8:25am, 2:40-3:3:45pm.

Below you will find my physical expectations and the explanation of the rubric that is used in the dance department. The rubric can be found on the Department policies page.

Expectations for success in Dance Class

As dancers we are required to multitask with every move we perform. There are significant details in each move that cannot be missed if improvements are to be made. There must be a conscious effort each and every day to fix these corrections and maintain them to ensure full success in dance.

Body Alignment: Displays and maintains correct body alignment at the barre and center all of the time. Example: head, shoulders, arms, ribs, hips, legs and feet are all in correct alignment with one another. If one segment of the body is out of line, all others will be affected. Once that happens it will cause strain on muscles and ligaments which can result in injury. Correct body alignment will help not to depend on the barre to balance as you will already have weight equally distributed. The use of the barre is intended to be an aid not a crutch. We only rest two fingers on the barre for our exercises. We never should grip the barre. With proper alignment there is also a counter pull of energy that is felt. Pretend there is a string on the top of your head, down through your feet and out your fingertips. As you lift up you need to also use that energy to press down and extend more energy through your fingertips. Hips never swivel, they are always solid with the pelvic bones facing forward at all times. Pelvis should neither be tucking under or sticking out. Rib cage should be directly in line with the hips. Shoulder, elbows, wrist and fingers are also on the same line. Shoulders are rotated and pressed down and back while lifting from the scapula (shoulder blade) and under the arm for the correct arm placement and port de bras. This happens without pressing the rib cage forward.


Technique: Displays excellent turnout, pointed feet and fully stretched legs.        Example:  When proper body alignment is maintained it becomes easier to concentrate on correcting technique therefore achieving positive results. Turn out comes from inside the hip socket and is consciously kept throughout the class. When performing tendu, degage, ron de jambe’ etc.. heel is always facing up and forward to the front and side and pressed down and forward to the back. This is done without lifting or sinking into the hip. Legs never bend when closing to 1st or 5th position unless the exercise calls for it. Feet are fully pointed and stretched from the top of the ankle to the toes. When fully pointing our feet it’s important to also check for a sickled foot. A sickled foot is one where the toes are not in line with the ankle. When performing a saute’ (jump) it’s important to elevate  (jump up) with heel, ball, toe and when descending use toe, ball, heel. All saute’s start and land in a plie’. All demi plie’s are performed with heels pressed into the floor as knees are pressed out over the toes and keeping the correct body alignment.


Corrections:  Whether corrections are made directly to you, to another student or generally to the class, you should always fix and improve what the teacher is expressing. Corrections are not only to help you improve but it also to help prevent injury. Without fixing corrections from one moment to another and from one class to another, it will be hard to achieve success in dance.  


Above are basic elements for achieving success in dance class. If you can master this then all other dance steps and genres will be easier for you perform.

Explanation of Rubric

Dance Technique (Skill Acquisition/Execution): This grade is based upon knowledge of the exercises/choreograph and if the dancer is demonstrating concepts of technique while and from day to day.

Execution: This grade is based on the performance of each exercise/choreography. If the dancer is fully using their technique as described above. Performing exercise with confidence, energy and concentration.

Professional Acquisition: This final grade is based on being fully prepared (dance attire, hair, notebook, pencil), coming to class on time and effort.

Thank You so much and here's to a successful year!