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Oreogal

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So a studio I was looking into possibly switching dd into for next year, only offers combo classes. I don't think, at least not in the schedule, that they even offer older age recreational classes. All the teens are on the comp. team So from the ages of 5 and up, it's a ballet/jazz/hip hop 1:15 min class. Can I dancer really learn any genre '"good" when you're only getting about 25 min of instruction in each? Maybe less since the little ones have to change shoes or may not be paying attention. They also require 3 dances in the recital and 3 costumes, which in my area could easily be $300 or so. Thoughts on combo classes, or eventually it's a waste of money?
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #2 
My dd (now 16) took only one single 60-90 min combo class until she was 8 or so (& that schedule didn't appear to have had any long term negative impact) so not only do I not see the harm in combo classes for younger kids but, given the choice, I actually prefer them.  As far as the older kids though?  It depends. Certainly they won't become accomplished dancers w/a schedule like that but nothing is a waste of money if it's delivering what a dancer wants/needs. Some kids just want to do a little dancing for fun.  Nothing wrong that.  Tbh, I'm glad to hear that some studios make that possible.  

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Bonbonmama

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Reply with quote  #3 
I could see it for younger kids (up to 5/6) and it would be fun for the kids that are really only interested in coming to a class once/wk and having some fun. Most kids I know do usually end up wanting to learn something more or become BETTER at their activity of choice, and then a combo class would no longer work.
For purely fun though, I see where that would be appealing to kids!

I'm a gymnastics coach so I see a LOT of kids coming through. We have a handful of kids who have been with our program for lots of years and who are still only interested in coming to a fun class once/wk, not interested (or capable) of taking it any further, and that's totally ok. The "rec" classes for 11+ are obviously fewer than the rec classes for 5yos, but they exist and I love that the opportunity is there for those gymnasts to keep enjoying it without pressure to do anything more.

Similarly, at our dance studio you can choose to only take select genre dances. You won't be moved through the ranks (so to speak) and move up in levels very often, if at all, but you can certainly choose to take just a contemporary class/wk, or just the hip hop etc. The class structure is set up to where if you're 10+ you can be in "beginning" (level 1), Intermediate (L2) or advanced (L3) classes. Only DTs can move you into these, it's all based on ability. There are 17yos who come to a few classes a week and are in L1, no worries! If you take all the recommended classes you would likely be moved up to L2 around age 12-13, then potentially to L3 another few years later. Some move faster. DDs friend (13) was just moved up to L2 last year but will be moving up with Dd to L3 this fall. If you're only taking a class for fun here and there, you would likely never be advanced to L3, but that's ok. I have seen girls who only come in once or twice/wk make it to L2 though!
Sorry, went off on a tangent there. All that to say that yes, at our studio you COULD take a rec class simply for fun and many kids do. At our former ballet studio, once you progressed the hours and classes became mandatory and there wasn't an option to simply take a class for fun...
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #4 
What do you mean exactly by ages 5 and up?  Like ages 5 until 12 and then teens are on comp team?  I've never heard of such a thing.  Could you have possibly misunderstood?
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melissa745

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Quote:
Originally Posted by joriebelle
What do you mean exactly by ages 5 and up?  Like ages 5 until 12 and then teens are on comp team?  I've never heard of such a thing.  Could you have possibly misunderstood?


There's a studio near me that does it exactly this way. Only combo classes and every teen is on the comp team, which has additional classes, but still not many.

Her teen team dancers are dancing 6-8 hours a week.

I'm not a fan of combo classes past age 6 or so. Not every kid likes every genre, and I don't feel like 30 minutes is enough time to fully develop any technique.
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Sidhe14

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Reply with quote  #6 
I think combo classes are a good way to try out different genres of dance. I wish we had a studio that gave that option. When DD was 4 the only option at our studio was a 45 min ballet/ tap combo. The studio has since changed this to creative movement. Starting 5 and up there are only single classes in each genre. We wanted to keep dance hours low, so she had to choose which one or two classes and it took her a few years to try them all. This was her first year moving forward in any specific genre, but she knows which ones she likes.

I think combo classes would be good for younger dancers interested in trying out different genres to decide which ones they like. Or a rec dancer who just wants to take a class or two for fun and have the opportunity to explore different genres without having to put in a lot of hours. If later on down the road your dancer wanted to concentrate on certain genres and move up, you may find that you will need to find another studio to grow with. However, it could be a great place to nurture one's love for dance.
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Oreogal

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by joriebelle
What do you mean exactly by ages 5 and up?  Like ages 5 until 12 and then teens are on comp team?  I've never heard of such a thing.  Could you have possibly misunderstood?

From ages 5-10, they only offer that combo class and an additional acro only class. What I meant were that all the teens at the studio are on the comp. team already. There's no recreational classes offered for teens.
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Oreogal

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Quote:
Originally Posted by melissa745


There's a studio near me that does it exactly this way. Only combo classes and every teen is on the comp team, which has additional classes, but still not many.

Her teen team dancers are dancing 6-8 hours a week.

I'm not a fan of combo classes past age 6 or so. Not every kid likes every genre, and I don't feel like 30 minutes is enough time to fully develop any technique.

Right? Especially something like ballet. It seems like a lot of studios I've looked into want all their student to eventually join their teams? But what about that kid that actually can dance pretty good, but just doesn't want to do a comp. team.
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melissa745

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreogal

Right? Especially something like ballet. It seems like a lot of studios I've looked into want all their student to eventually join their teams? But what about that kid that actually can dance pretty good, but just doesn't want to do a comp. team.


We definitely have this option at our studio. We have some girls who don't want to be on a team at all because of other commitments, but they can still take high quality Rex classes. It's too bad more studios don't offer that.
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreogal
From ages 5-10, they only offer that combo class and an additional acro only class. What I meant were that all the teens at the studio are on the comp. team already. There's no recreational classes offered for teens.


Ah okay, I get it now.  I don't know if I'd like that or not.  In a way it's good that everything is together so that it's just one day a week, but on the other hand I'm not sure 25 minutes in each genre is enough time to get much out of it.
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tappinmom

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Reply with quote  #11 
At both of our studios combo classes were only up to age 4 or 5 and then they had regular classes in each genre.  I don't see how an older dancer could learn much in a combo class.
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EJIDance

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Reply with quote  #12 
Our studio has Creative Movement for the under 6 set. After that each class is structured the same: 30 min stretch/barre (some basic ballet barre work is there regardless of genre), 45 min technique in a given genre, 15 min routine/choreography. We don't have a comp team. So the choreography is only for the recital and or community performances. There would be no way to fit different genres in the 45 minutes.
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DanceTumbleCheerMom

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Reply with quote  #13 
Our Studio has 1 jazz/tap combo only from 3-5th grade and that's it.  DD took it last year as a way to get introduced to tap and get back in shape with jazz.  She wont see any more combo classes s long as we are with the current studio 
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jwsqrdplus2

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Reply with quote  #14 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreogal
From ages 5-10, they only offer that combo class and an additional acro only class. What I meant were that all the teens at the studio are on the comp. team already. There's no recreational classes offered for teens.


We were at a studio that did that.  And I wouldn't recommend it at all.  There will come a point when a dancer who wants to progress will need more than a combo class.  It was actually quite  frustrating having one comp dancer and 1 rec dancer at that studio.  Unless you were on team, you did not get to take any of the 1-hour just jazz or just tap, etc.  Ballet was the only "only" class that was open to rec dancers as well.  And at age 9, my rec dancer was in a tap-jazz combo class with 14 and 15 yr olds because of her tap skills (she could actually out tap most of the team girls her age, but did not want to compete).  She lasted a year at that studio before she decided she was completely done with dance, then moved on to basketball which she adores as much as her sister adores dance!
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cynmckee

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Reply with quote  #15 
Honestly, I didn't think studios did combo classes past the very little kids.  I wonder if that is regional?  I have never seen it here once the kid are past 7 or 8.
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jazzminesun81

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Reply with quote  #16 
No combo classes after kindergarten at our studio. I can see how it would be great for the truly rec dancer just doing it for fun for a couple hours a week to squeeze in a few genres in a short amount of time, but I don't know that you can get great training in any of the disciplines in that amount of time per week.
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Jacaranda

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Reply with quote  #17 
Our studio only has combo classes for pre school aged kids, and even these are t really combo class, but back to back classes. I think the main positive is that it introduces little ones to a variety of styles of dance. Perhaps they just wanted to do tap, but their ballet/tap/jazz combo lets them taste other styles too.

The term red dancers or comp dancer is t really used here at all. In most studios all kids take the same technique classes and sit for their dance exams whether they are on competition teams or not. The kids on the team will then take additional classes for choreography, but everyone learns the same work.
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Klba37

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Reply with quote  #18 
Our studio has Combo Classes up to about 7 yr olds. Then you either try out for the Competition team or do individual classes.
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jeanne4379

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreogal
So a studio I was looking into possibly switching dd into for next year, only offers combo classes. I don't think, at least not in the schedule, that they even offer older age recreational classes. All the teens are on the comp. team So from the ages of 5 and up, it's a ballet/jazz/hip hop 1:15 min class. Can I dancer really learn any genre '"good" when you're only getting about 25 min of instruction in each? Maybe less since the little ones have to change shoes or may not be paying attention. They also require 3 dances in the recital and 3 costumes, which in my area could easily be $300 or so. Thoughts on combo classes, or eventually it's a waste of money?


My question is why are you even considering this?  Honestly, combo classes for everyone all the way through?  Huh?  I never heard of this before.  I don't see how they could learn anything much with the minimum amount of time in each discipline given.  Even the comp team does this?  How do they even offer a decent recreational class at that rate?  Personally I'd stay far away from this place.  A dancer can take quality classes for the fun of it, not be under obligation to a team or even perform.  what they are entitled to is a quality dance education. And you are entitled to good value for your hard earned money.
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elastigal

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Reply with quote  #20 
Our studio is doing a 90 minute youth jazz/tap combo class this coming year (age 9+). The reason is because they had two separate classes this year that were back to back and the exact same girls took both classes. So they decided to combine them into one and cut it to 90 minutes instead of two 1 hour classes, so 45 minutes each discipline. I think they will do both a jazz routine and a tap routine at recital next year.
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prancer

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Reply with quote  #21 
Our last studio was similar to this. There really were no good options for skilled recreational dancers. I would consider looking around for other studios. In our area some mega schools had good rec classes, some studios let girls not on team take classes with the team, and the ballet schools all had good options. I would contact local studios directly. Many studios do not advertise more advanced classes on websites, because you need an inviatation or placement audition to join them.
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Oreogal

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Reply with quote  #22 
Quote:
Originally Posted by prancer
Our last studio was similar to this. There really were no good options for skilled recreational dancers. I would consider looking around for other studios. In our area some mega schools had good rec classes, some studios let girls not on team take classes with the team, and the ballet schools all had good options. I would contact local studios directly. Many studios do not advertise more advanced classes on websites, because you need an inviatation or placement audition to join them. [/QUOTE

Yea, we've decided on someplace else. To the poster asking about the comp. team, the older girls are great dancers, so I'm going to 100% say they are not taking combo classes. They don't advertise their comp. team schedule or required classes, so I have no clue what it is. There's also no "requirements" to be on the comp. team, it's just that I noticed there are no classes offered for older children and all the 12 and up are on the team.
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jazzminesun81

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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by elastigal
Our studio is doing a 90 minute youth jazz/tap combo class this coming year (age 9+). The reason is because they had two separate classes this year that were back to back and the exact same girls took both classes. So they decided to combine them into one and cut it to 90 minutes instead of two 1 hour classes, so 45 minutes each discipline. I think they will do both a jazz routine and a tap routine at recital next year.


I could see how this would make sense, then. Then they'd only have to stretch and warm up once at the beginning and could spend more time overall on tap and jazz. Unfortunately, this wouldn't work at our studio since it's not always all the same girls.
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