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nyklane

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Reply with quote  #1 
New mom here..

So I thought that each type of "school" or teaching of ballet had their own description of levels.  RAD, ABT or others.  And I do see a consistent discussion of Level 1 - 8.  But do they mean the same things?

The reason why I ask is I see a lot of people ask "which level" during Summer Intensive discussions.  Is it a standard level with skills attached?  I would think not, as summer intensives are fairly independent, right?

Clearly level 1 and 2 in any method are beginner.  In my ABT school, level 3 starts some point.  My other school, point starts in what we call advanced.  So really have no frame of reference.

So are levels "close"...  Do you understand in general a difference between a level 4, say - and a level 7 in any teaching methodology?

Just curious!  Thank you!
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dave9988

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Reply with quote  #2 
I do not believe there is any correlation with "levels" in our studio vs. any other studio or methodology.
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prancer

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Reply with quote  #3 
I’ve wondered this too. We have levels up to 5 and then intermediate and advanced. These terms are consistent with two of our local ballet schools, but the third counts up to level 8.
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hopefuldancer17

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Reply with quote  #4 
I'm sure it varies widely from school to school.
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dancer1234

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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefuldancer17
I'm sure it varies widely from school to school.


and sometimes with in the school.. My daughter recently changed studios mid year and started in ballet 4/5 in the new school, then a scheduling conflict with other activities happened and need to move her to another day, only available option was a level 3/4 with the ballet master of the school.. Daughter was disappointed in moving to a "lower" level.   She is no longer disappointed because she said they work much more technique and she gets a good workout and  in the 3/4 than in the 4/5 class. 


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meatball77

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Reply with quote  #6 
The number of levels is often more about how many students are in the school than anything else.  Some places kids stay in each level for a year, in some they stay for several.  Studios also start level one at different ages.

Our level 1's are 8-10, our level 2's start pointe but not at the same time and some possibly not even the first year (9-14) and level 3 is our top level (and when it's larger they split it into contemporary and classical tracks) which starts from 12-14.

For summer intensives they're all different, some correspond to their yearly levels and some don't.
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sglemon

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Reply with quote  #7 
As far as intensives go, initiate "level" assignment isn't necessary the level you will be at.  They do assess the students and move them accordingly, and a lot of time the deciding factor is based on numbers in the particular levels
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Dancingdd

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Reply with quote  #8 
I see no correlation between schools. Our studio goes to level 6 and then various advanced levels after that. The teenagers are usually all together in various advanced levels.
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hopefuldancer17

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Reply with quote  #9 
Our school has had levels 1-5 and then advanced, levels 1-6 and level 1-7. So even with the school it has changed depending on the students enrolled and their capabilities (very small school). And, being "advanced" at this school does NOT mean you are an advanced dancer in the larger dance world. It's all relative. 
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balletbus

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Reply with quote  #10 
For the sake of adding to the fray, our school has colors for the levels, with each color having two numbered sublevels.
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5678StarMom

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Reply with quote  #11 
Sometimes intensives start at level 4 and go to level 8, or level 1 is highest and 6 is the lowest...or they use colors to identify levels. Or add an A and B to numbers. 

DD15 has been involved in 3 different studios for year round training now. What I am describing below primarily describes ballet levels. The other classes are usually different by a little bit.

Studio 1 has 4 levels, used to be labeled 1-4 with 4 being the highest. Now labeled 1, 2, pre-pointe and advanced ballet. They are *so* not advanced at any level, their advanced level would be about halfway through the levels at both other studios that DD has attended.

Studio 2 has 9 levels, 1 being the lowest (starts at age 7ish) and 9 being the most advanced. At the low levels they are primarily grouped by age and move about a level up each year. At levels 6-9 they are grouped by ability and are mostly middle school through high school aged. They have lots of students, about 20ish in each level, so they are able to do that.

Studio 3 is the most pre-professional studio that DD has been involved in so far (they have the best program that follows the BTFD guidelines and longest classes), and they intentionally keep their studio very small. They have 5 levels, 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest. The combine levels 4/5 one time each week, for a "large" class of 8. At the top level there are only 4 girls, and only room for 6.
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ggsmith

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Reply with quote  #12 

If you are at a school with annual evaluations provided by an outside agency as part of an established curriculum, you have a little information at the end of the year when you get a form that says "passed" or "passed with distinction."

In my opinion, levels are meaningless in most cases.

Generally, it is just a way of separating the enrolled students into groups.

Not all schools even group students the same way.

For some schools, levels are determined by age.

For some schools, levels are determined by skill level.

For some schools, level is determined by some combination of skill and age.

"Skill level" is often a completely arbitrary definition and based on the opinion of one or more faculty member.

Just because a particular school or summer program always has 7 levels, level "4" may mean something entirely different in a year where there is a preponderance of highly skilled 13-year-olds than in a year where there is a huge group of very average 15-year-old dancers.

All you can do is ask yourself if the level your student is assigned to is meeting their needs.  Are they learning?  Refining technique?  Challenged?  Receiving meaningful group and individual corrections?  Whether they are in Blue Level, Liberace Level, or Level I-b-13 really tells you nothing relevant.

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Angel2228

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Reply with quote  #13 
You mentioned RAD.
For dds studio they have 'levels' assaigned to each class, but each level could be different than the grade they are in RAD.
For example,
Ballet 1 (is doing pre primary)
2 (primary)
3 (grade 1)
4 (grade 2)
5 (grade 3)
6 (grade 4)
7 (grade 5)
8 (interfoundation)
9 (advanced)
They could also add an A. If they have two grade 3 classes, it would be 5A or 5B.

They also may not have a grade 3 class one year, so everyone would be shifted down and end up in the same level, but not the same grade. I don't honestly pay any attention what level they call the class. It's what they do in the class that's important.
Dd went to a summer school and they levelled in colours, one was higher, but the difference between the top two was what they worked on. The strengths of each class were different. One worked more contemporary, the other went more classical. Each strong in their own way.
I used to hate having my dd in gymnastics and the class as a whole would work on flexibility. My dd does not need to work on it. She needed strength. I would have preferred her to be in a lower level if it meant they worked on what she needed to.

And to answer what you are asking,
My dd was level 7 at her studio, and 4 at the SI. And most kids in her SI class were level 8+ at their studios. (The teacher asked everyone what syllabus they trained and what grade, dd found out she was the lowest) which made her extremely happy that they assessed her to be with with kids in higher grades, even though I guess technically the name portion is lower than the studio. Didn't even come up. I guess because kids don't normally go to SI's before 10 years which cuts out the first few.
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tappinmom

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Reply with quote  #14 
Both studios we attended split ballet classes according to exam levels passed.

Studio 1 was BATD and at 8 DS had just completed his grade 1 exam.

Moved to studio 2 which was RAD and he was placed in grade 3.  After the first class he was moved to grade 4.  According to the ballet mistress BATD taught more advanced skills at a lower grade than RAD.  RAD was a slower boil.
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nyklane

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Reply with quote  #15 
Thank you everyone for such detailed answers. As I expected (and experienced myself) it seems everyone is different - THEN in SI’s everyone is different still.

:)
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