TSD Students are enrolled into classes at the appropriate skill and age level so they may maximize their learning potential. All of TSD’s instructors get to know their students and watch their growth, especially in the first weeks of instruction, followed by suggestions and when necessary, replaced into classes that complement their learning levels.


2017-2018 TSD Classes and Descriptions

Classical Ballet is life! TSD teaches the underpinning of skills and techniques on the body’s alignment and proper positioning with solid posture. We use Barre instruction along with choreography combos to help the student connect rhythmically, with their flexibility and coordination. Since Ballet is the basis for all dance genres, along with strength development for sports play, we prefer a curriculum based on self-control, discipline and self-awareness.



Creative Movement – Age 3, The structure of a classroom environment is introduced and the children learn to take simple direction from the teacher. Children gain body awareness and begin to master group work, for example, moving in a circle or working with partners. Musicality and rhythm are taught through clapping, singing and improvising to music. Creative imagery, mime and props are used to help the children respond to music. Basic movement themes such as; jumping, balletic walks/runs, spinning and skipping are explored as an introduction to classical ballet.



Beginning Ballet I – Ages 3-6 / 0-2 years experience, Progressing from Creative Movement, children now learn to work in lines and on the diagonal. Basic movement themes such as; jumping, balletic walks/runs, spinning and skipping are explored as an introduction to classical ballet. Students continue to work with partners and in groups to facilitate a sense of teamwork. Barre and center work is introduced, as ballet technique is given emphasis in this class.



Beginning Ballet 2– Ages 7-10 / 1-4 years experience, Level 2 introduces students to the foundations of barre work in order to develop proper alignment and classical technique. Students continue to work on traveling steps. At this level an emphasis is placed on turning, jumping, and linking steps. Introductory character work and free movement study provide students with an avenue for self-expression and performance style. Students are expected to show awareness of basic technique, appropriate timing and musicality.


Intermediate Ballet – Ages 8-11 / 3-5 years experience, Intermediate students are given similar structure to Beginner Level 2 students, with an increased expectation of proper technique and musicality. Students will focus on building the strength, flexibility and control needed to execute ballet moves. Students at this level are given extended barre exercises with increasing demi pointe work, stretching and strengthening. Classical ballet lines should be established along with a new vocabulary for traveling steps, elevation and pirouettes. Each class will emphasize barre exercises and will also include a challenging combinations of center floor work and across-the-floor combinations.


Intermediate/Advanced Ballet – Ages 10-13 / 3-5 years experience, Students at this level are given extended barre exercises with increasing demi pointe work, stretching and strengthening. Classical ballet lines should be established along with a new vocabulary for traveling steps, elevation and pirouettes. The lyrical use of arms and upper back builds on the free movement established in the previous level. Students at this level have a strong understanding of classical vocabulary and can now adequately demonstrate use of line and musical performance.



Advanced Ballet – Ages 14+ / 5+ years experience, Advanced. Students now have an extensive ballet vocabulary. At this level, articulate footwork and secure use of legs is crucial. Class work continues to improve the dancer’s spatial awareness and orientation of the body. Dancers continue to work on coordination of the whole body with the addition of fluidity of movement. Added steps include multiple pirouettes and beating jumps. This class allows the dancer the ability to fully warmup the legs and body to prepare for pointe class.


Pointe – Also known as pointe work, the dancer supports all body weight on the tips of fully extended feet using a pointe shoe, a special dance shoe that consists of a hardened box and a stiff-shanked shoe. Beginning pointe students begin at the barre, learning proper foot placement and becoming confident in shoes with exercises in releve, sauté and echappe. Students with increased pointe experience learn center combinations and turns, such as chaine, pirouette and fouette are introduced. Due to the demands that pointe work places on the body, students must have the necessary strength in their core, legs, ankles and feet, as well as meeting the necessary class requirements and passing a studio evaluation to be considered for this advanced class. In certain circumstances, a doctor examination of the feet may be needed to ensure proper growth plate development. Students are required to take Advanced Ballet and to be assessed by a teacher before dancing on pointe.


What are Ballet Technique Classes? Want more time in the studio to perfect that soutenu? Take this non-performing class each week and see the increased results before your eyes. Your instructor will work with you on perfecting your technique, so whether you want to perform stronger in your ballet class or jazz class, or get higher marks at your competition…this class is for you.


Why should you add more ballet to your week?

1. Footwork gains precision and speed

2. Muscles become more pliable and warm

3. More ballet helps body prepare for more jumps and leaps

4. Flexibility and strength in the dancer will increase

5. Ballet improves a dancer’s balance and MUCH more


Ballet Technique Class – Ages 10+ Intermediate/Advanced, must have at least 2+ years recent ballet experience. Students will focus on building the strength, flexibility and control needed to execute ballet skills. Each class will emphasize barre exercises and will include a combination of center floor work and across-the-floor combinations.


This level is designed to give the necessary training to students wishing to study ballet seriously, encouraging the technical requirements along with establishing artistry, musicality and feeling. New steps are introduced to further establish the dancer’s repertoire of skills , while the precision and line of the dancer is improved. Correct technique, posture and strength are required of the dancer for pirouettes and grand allegro for Ballet Tech.



What is Contemporary? Using music to translate emotion into movement, contemporary is very fluid and utilizes aspects of ballet and jazz dance. Dancers are challenged to find meaning behind the music and connect that to the choreography. Dancers are taught to use smooth transitions between movements and incorporate breath into their dance. Classes include character development through discussion and examples in both dance and student experience. Contemporary is suggested for ages 7 and up who have previous ballet experience, as it focuses on emotional strength and older emotional themes. Students are asked to draw upon their own experience to relate to the music and choreography and use the encounter to grow as a dancer and as a person. Intermediate through Advanced levels are available. Students must have a strong background in ballet to advance into contemporary training.


Beginning Contemporary – Ages 7+ Beginner, must have 2 years ballet exp. This fun and informative class is for students who hold a basic understanding in ballet and would like to develop their skills; building confidence, improving technique and increasing dance vocabulary. Students are taught how to relay story and emotion into their dancing. These classes are NOT for complete beginners.


Intermediate Contemporary – Ages 10+ Beginner/Intermediate, must have 1+ years contemporary exp. And 2 years ballet exp. This class is designed to expand a student’s knowledge and performance skills. You will work further on technique and learning the dynamics of movement phrasing. These classes are also suitable for older students with experience who are returning to dance.


Advanced Contemporary – Ages 15+ Advanced, must have 2+ years contemporary experience and 3+ years ballet exp., as well as Director approval. Fast paced, challenging classes for advanced students competent in contemporary or ballet. Emphasis is on building movement sequences, stretching and versatility.


What is Jazz? A stylized technique based class that emphasizes long lines and musicality. As an ever changing art form, jazz encompasses many forms of technique from contemporary to musical theater. Class focuses on flexibility, strength, turns and leaps and jazz choreography. Jazz is specifically used to teach personal expression and help dancers find their personal style and voice, as well as body control and awareness. These topics relate to body and choreography and use the encounter to grow as a dancer and as a person. Each level will focus on learning proper dance technique such as isolations of the body, improving performance quality and developing complex rhythms and patterns. Students will be exposed to various styles of jazz such as Broadway, Street and Contemporary to help develop a well-rounded dancer. Class curriculum is based on ballet technique layered with traditional jazz movement and includes a proper warm-up, stretches, isolations, across-the-floor progressions, and combinations. As students progress through each level 0f 1-5, the curriculum will become increasingly more complex and intricate.


Beginner through advanced levels.

Beginning Jazz 1 – Ages 6-9 / 0-2 years experience

Beginning Jazz 2 – Ages 7-10 / 1-3 years experience

Intermediate Jazz – Ages 11-14 / 4+ years experience

Advanced Jazz – Ages 15+ / 5+ years experience, Director Approval Needed


Leaps, Turns and Tricks - A non performing technique class for the dedicated dancer who averages 3+ hours of taking class in the studio per week. The entire class time will be devoted to perfecting the art of the successful turns, leaps and tricks. Dancers will learn how to better control their bodies, while also learning various advanced leap patterns, as well as turn combinations. Students will be given ample time to perfect their skills. A breakdown of each skill will be taught by the instructor. Students will also be given combinations of skills to travel across center. Taking “Stretch and Conditioning” is recommended alongside “Turns and Leaps.” It is recommended that all intermediate and advanced ballet, contemporary and jazz students add this to their weekly classes.


Stretch and Conditioning – This non performing class for all ages that is designed to improve a dancer’s range of motion, enhance muscle flexibility and increase their level of core muscle strength. Through a variety of stretches and strengthening exercises, dancers will also increase their awareness of their own body’s potential as it connects to expression through movement. This class for the dedicated dancer that is designed to take with a “Turns and Leaps” class. “Stretch and Conditioning” is designed to teach students the proper ways to stretch and workout to benefit their dancing the most.


This class is not meant to replace at home training, but to enhance it. This class will focus on correcting muscle imbalances and the correct the following:

1. Your hip’s external rotators are extremely tight from being turned out all day, and so you lack a significant amount of internal rotation (which is important too).

2. Your quads and hip flexors are chronically tight from continuous over use.

3. Your ankles lack the ability to dorsiflex, and the posterior calf muscles become tight from being on your toes so often.

4. There is generally a huge discrepancy from the right side of the body to the left. Think about it, we practice things way more on the right side, and some choreography is never reversed.

5. The instructor will also work on improving leg and core strength, and improving your dance technique.


What is Tap? Tap classes are designed to develop rhythm, style and sound. Students will learn a variety of tap styles from Broadway to Rhythm tap. Exercises focus on building flexibility of the knee and ankles, coordination, and speed of movement. The class emphasis is on developing proper tap technique, producing clear tap sounds, and having fun. As students progress through each level, the curriculum will become increasingly more complex and intricate.


Includes beginner through advanced level classes.

Beginner Tap 1 – Ages 4-6 / 0-2 years experience

Beginner Tap 2 – Ages 7-11 / 1-2 years experience

Intermediate Tap – Ages 10-14 / 3-5 years experience

Advanced Tap – Ages 15+ / 5+ years experience

What is Hip Hop? This class is high-energy and fun for both guys and girls who want to learn some “Old School” style influenced by some of today’s hottest choreographers. Classes include conditioning and warm-up, simplified break down of each dance step, skill combinations and choreography. Movements and music are age-appropriate. Beginner through advanced levels are available.


Beginner Hip Hop – Ages 6+, Students will learn to understand and apply knowledge of hip-hop fundamentals. We start the class by focusing on the foundations and origins of hip-hop in America, and end with current styles and movements from around the world (bboy, grooves, footwork, krump, crews, house, vogue, LA-style choreography, popping, etc). Emphasis on rhythm and proper technique all while maintaining a fun and high energy class.


Intermediate Hip Hop – Concentration on learning through movement and choreography and grooves. Students will learn to keep themselves in shape through core workouts and conditioning exercises. Choreography will be designed to improve flexibility, rhythm and extension while maintaining proper technique and timing.


Advanced Hip Hop – Advanced, Class is designed for the high energy, intense, and seasoned dancer. Syllabus for this level includes choreography and dance moves from the industry’s biggest performers and coaches! Building cardio, strength, killer ab workouts and an overall amazing time to grow as a dancer or as an athlete.


What is Acrobatics? Acro (acrobatics/tumbling) is centered on fundamental acrobatic technique to increase flexibility, strength, balance, coordination, endurance, timing, body awareness, self-discipline, and confidence. Classes focus on proper hand placement and body alignment with emphasis on the muscles and flexibility required to perform proper technique.

Terry's School of Dance & Gymnastics

8730 Richmond Highway

Alexandria, Virginia 22309


Email: terrysdanceandgym703@gmail.com

Hours of Operation

Monday - 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday & Wednesday - 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Saturday - 10:00 a.m. - Noon

Staff appointments are available on request.