Frequently Asked Questions (and Answers!)


We are currently enrolled in the class. Why do we need to re-register for each new semester?

Schedule may change depending on the time of the year, enrolment, and your feedback. Your emergency contact information such as email and phone numbers may change as well. Your child may decide to try a different style of dance, or may discover their love of movement a little bit later in the year. For these reasons we ask you to complete our online registration form prior to each semester.

Do I need to buy special dance shoes/uniform for my child?

Yes, a special uniform is required for most of the classes, including Tiny Star and creative movement levels. Dance class involves physical activity and we must ensure comfort and safety of the child. Please refer to our uniform policy under our general policies section.

 We are so excited about our upcoming dance class! We read your class attire guidelines but couldn’t help but purchase a fancy outfit (tu-tu with flowers, brightly coloured leotard, etc.) Is this ok? 

Unfortunately no, for several important reasons. Uniforms in class have a particular utility, especially for our Tiny Stars . A proper uniform can help students to learn proper movement, and is crucial for instructors view and ability to correct technique. Depending on the movements required, they may interact with their uniform in different ways, and could be impeded by embellishments on the clothing. Additionally, they may spend too much time and attention playing with adornments like flowers and sparkles instead of listening to the instructor, and enjoying their dance. Not to worry, your dancer will get plenty of opportunity to dance in their fancy costumes during our several performance opportunities throughout the year!

 Can parents/guardians be present during the class?

Dance class is a new world for your child to discover, and all students must be comfortable in their environment for them to flourish. For this reason, family members are not invited into the classroom. There may be occasional opportunities to peek into your child’s class progress, as well as performances like our Holiday shows and year end recital, where all family members are invited to attend and celebrate students progress and success!

For guardians of 3-5year olds, please see “My child is 3-5 yrs old…” question below.

What is the age range for classes?

 Class age groups can be found attached to every class name, as well as in the bottom left corner of every class block in the schedule. Required ages are structured in a way to help align our progressional syllabus with the abilities of the dancers. Each age group used in our classes corresponds to the physiological development stage of the students, with opportunity for in-class evaluation of individual level at the instructors discretion.

Is my child ready for the next level up?

At DSA we believe in a firm foundation for our dancers, and follow a progressional syllabus for all of our dance styles. This means that students must be able to correctly perform and comprehend a set of level appropriate skills and technique before they can move to the next level. Most often this lines up securely with our class age blocks, but especially hard working students may achieve this a little bit faster than others.

Once the instructor feels your student is ready for the challenge of the next level, the studio will recommend the next appropriate class. We strongly believe that all students should be given an opportunity to challenge themselves and progress, however advancing too early will almost always lead to feeling uncomfortable and insecure in class.

If you have questions about your child’s progress, please contact us. We will be happy to answer any questions about our different syllabi and how they apply to your child’s best dance education!

Do classes include bathroom and water breaks?

Policy varies depending on the class your child takes. For our Tiny Stars, classes do not include a break due to short class time. If a child must leave or needs water during class time, the child may leave with assistance from a parent. Instructors do not leave the room at any time during classes, and are not permitted to take your child to the bathroom! 

Classes that are 60+min do include typically one short water break, but these will not exceed three minutes.

For all classes, please be sure your student visits the bathroom before class, otherwise they will miss important exercises and disrupt the lesson for other students.

 Do you offer private lessons?

Yes, we offer private classes and choreography work. Please email us with your goals, style, age, timeframe and any other information that may help us direct you to the right Instructor.

When do students start pointe work?

The age at which dancers start pointe work varies from student to student. Strength is paramount in being able to wear pointe shoes for extended periods of time. Premature wearing of pointe shoes or insufficient training can result in serious injuries and/or disabilities. Generally, the age of 10-12 years old is considered most appropriate. It’s important to understand that pointe work is specific to a dancer’s strength and skill level, not to an age, syllabus, or methodology. Qualified teacher must make a decision as to when a student is ready for pointe work. For more information on this topic, please visit the  Orthopedics Institute article.

 What happens when a class is cancelled?

If the circumstances are in our control we will make every effort to find a substitute instructor. If classes are cancelled due to Dance Academy reasons we will offer a make up class. If the cancellation is weather related, there will not be a makeup class.

Cancellations will be posted on Hot 105/Ocean 100 Storm pages, CBC Storm Centre, and our Facebook and Instagram pages.

If I wish to withdraw from a class half way through the semester, is it OK not to pay our second payment?

No, tuition payment plan is offered for your convenience. Semester tuition fee is not optional. In addition, withdrawal must be completed on the studio end, so please talk to us before you decide to leave class. We always want make sure that, even if you decide to withdraw, you have no unaddressed problems or concerns.

All registered students are required to pay in full, and students are considered registered until a formal email request is made to be removed from class. Please see our refund policy for more information.

If I wish to withdraw from a class, can I get a refund?

Yes, if we are notified prior to refund deadline. Please refer to registration policy for details. To ensure quality instruction for your child, we limit the number of students for each class. We often have waiting list, but we close the registration after the first week of class, and turn away students who otherwise could have been enrolled. If a registered student decides to drop after trying 1-2 classes we can no longer fill this class space. We offer Bring a Friend events throughout the year where anyone can attend and try any age-appropriate class at no cost. You can sign up for our newsletter to be notified of these events.

 Can I try a class out first to see if I like it?

We offer “Bring a Friend” class, which is the best time to try out a new style. We do not have try outs outside of this offer. Students registration and fees must be payable before the first class. We limit number of students in all classes.  Bring a Friend dates can be found in our schedule, or by signing up for our  newsletter.

 How many students are in the class?

To ensure quality of instruction and learning experience, classes for ages 3-5 and 5-7 years old are limited to a maximum of 10 and 12 students respectfully. Classes for 7.5yrs and up are limited to 14 students.

 I missed the registration, can I start the semester late?

Bringing in new students late into the session will impact the student’s ability to catch up, as well as the impact on the rest of the group. Any feelings of “being behind” may negatively effect students attitude toward the class and dance activity in general. Awareness of this fact along with setting correct expectations will help if students have missed 3-4 classes.

We signed up after semester already started. Can we get a discount?

The tuition fees cover the knowledge and skills acquired in the course of the semester. If the student starts late the instructor spends a considerable amount of time and personalized attention to bring the student up to the level of the class. We expect all students to receive an equal value of dance instruction by the end of the semester. Thus we do not offer discounts for late start. After the first 3-4 weeks it becomes difficult to achieve this goal without putting overall class progression at risk, and we no longer accept students into this semester.

 What special events does Dance Stars Academy have and how will I know when they are?

We offer “Bring a Friend” classes, Parent Observation classes, and Shows/Recitals. We will be posting announcements on our website, in-studio, and through newsletters and email announcements (if you provide your active email address).

How many classes are in the semester and how long are they?

Classes last for anywhere from 45 min to hour and a half depending on the group age and class type. Classes and registration are offered on a semester basis. Depending on the calendar year the semester may be 15-18 weeks long.

How do I register for classes?

You can register online by completing the registration form. Payments can be made in full upon registration, or in monthly instalments per semester. A signed registration form is required before a child can take a class. Included in your registration are recital fees to cover associated expenses, such as costumes, props, etc.

What methods of payments do you accept?

We accept online payments via credit card, direct bank transfer, PayPal, Interac, and personal checks.

Do I need to pre-register for classes?

We announce schedule and registration via a newsletter distribution list several weeks before each semester begins. Class space is limited, therefore we suggest you reserve class space when registration begins. Please note, cancellations are rare but we do have waiting lists.

 My child is 3-5 years old and tried dance class before. She/he sometimes cries and has a difficult time staying in class without mom? What can be done about it?

This is one of the key questions and can make or break your child’s interest in dance. Our experience shows that following a few simple rules can make a world of difference in this situation.

First, on your way to class explain to your child where they are going and what they will be doing, and about the new friends they will meet.

Second, always bring your child 5-10 minutes early. Give them time to change, and get into the atmosphere of the class. We usually have toys and puzzles for them to play for a few minutes. Bringing a child late and pushing them into the class after it started almost always results in confusion and feeling of being put on the spot. This leads to crying in many cases.

Finally, and contrary to logical thinking, if a child sees a parent during the class he/she will almost surely want to be with mommy, and not with other kids dancing.

Our Tiny Stars methodology is specifically designed for small children of this age. At the Instructor’s discretion, they may invite the parent into a class for a few minutes or may take the child outside for a parent to calm them down. Please follow the instructor’s suggestions, and your child will have the best experience. It usually takes 2-3 classes at most for children to become comfortable with their new friends and the atmosphere.

Which technique/syllabus do you teach?

We use Vaganova method syllabus. Often it is referred to as Classical Russian Ballet methodology. You can find more information on this and other major ballet training methods on the internet. A brief overview can be found here.

We use ADAPT Syllabus training and ACROBATIQUE/ACRODANCE for Jazz, Tap and Acro.

Our child has never taken dance before. What would you recommend to start with?

We have a variety of styles to suit the different personality traits of children. Our Tiny Stars classes cater to the musicality and interests of younger children who are new to dance.  For older students, we have a variety of options depending on their interests.  Feel free to give us a call and we will be happy to help you decide!

 Why Recital Costume Rental Fee? 

There are many views on recital costumes, and here is ours:

Year-end recital is a very special performance event for your child. Recital dance performance requires a costume; otherwise it would be a mere demonstration! For the same reason, virtually every public facing discipline or activity has a formal wear that compliments the action at its best.

Costume prices consist of two components the Price and the Handling effort. The Price consists of the following: sale price ($60-$90 USD) plus taxes, shipping, import duties, custom broker fees, and replacement parts for costumes damaged during  use. The Effort cost includes the following: measuring each student, selection, sourcing and ordering the dance appropriate type of costume, handling of costumes (on average each costume is handled 6-7 times per semester), matching accessories, fitting, repairing, adjusting, distributing and collecting, washing, cleaning, storing, labeling, and ironing.

Costumes are selected for a specific recital theme. They have limited use outside of the show. For that reason, we do not sell or charge our students the full cost of the costume. We charge a Rental Fee, which we hope will help us offset the total cost involved, and will enable us to make this event a true celebration for your child year after year!

 

If you have any questions or need more information please email us at info@dancestarsacademy.com