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No parents allowed in Ballet class, is this standard?

(44 Posts)
minkersmum Tue 11-Mar-14 21:17:24

Dd2 is 5 and fancied trying ballet. She has a bit of seperation anxiety and for most things prefer me to stay until she feels confident with the new person. Even now she is at school if there is a new person coming to school she gets incredibly anxious, asking questions as soon as she opens her eyes on that day of school, upset nervous tummy etc. Once she knows and trusts the person she is absolutely fine. Anyway she fancied trying ballet. There is a class in town that her class mates go to and so i have taken her along. First week she was fine and I was allowed to sit on the chairs in the hall while they had their class. Then there was a two week holiday so last week still felt quite new and I planned to sit and watch again but was told this isn't allowed. Teacher eventually allowed it but said after this I must leave her and wait outside.

It's a class full of 4/5/6 years olds. Is this pretty standard? I quite like that it is quite strict, lots of fuss about sitting up straight cross legged and eyes on the teacher etc but at the same time I'm not sure I like the 'no parents' rule! Another parent had relatives from New Zealand staying and asked if they could watch for a bit and was told no too!!

I'm thinking you are all going to say this is the norm but I wanted to ask!

MarmMummy Tue 11-Mar-14 21:20:26

Totally normal after the age of 4, though they do tend to have one watching class at the end of term.
You could ask to do a trial class with you present?
I would try an independent ballet school rather than a large franchise as they might be more flexible

RiojaHaze Tue 11-Mar-14 21:20:38

Totally the norm in my experience! The teachers DD has always had says that parents are too distracting and the child will focus on them, show off or cling onto them rather than concentrating on the dancing.

90sthrowback Tue 11-Mar-14 21:21:07

I don't think it is unusual tbh, parents in the room can be really distracting for the children and make the teacher feel very much in the spotlight.

If you feel really strongly about it, I am sure that there will be other dance schools that allow it, but most IME don't.

MrsBungle Tue 11-Mar-14 21:22:53

Normal in my experience. My reception 4 year old does ballet and I have to wait in another room with all the other parents. We are invited in once a term to see what they've been learning.

minkersmum Tue 11-Mar-14 21:28:31

Thanks I did wonder if it was pretty standard. My dd doesn't get distracted by my being there. With me there she can relax and concentrate on the teacher but if she is anxious all her energy will go into 'where is Mum' and feel upset. I am hoping she grows out of this the longer she is in school but I have learned the hard way that forcing the issue has previously only made her worse.

Hopefully we can sort it out as she seems to like it and they have asked at each class if she has danced before!

There is only this class I know of, we are quite rural but will have a search. Saying that the teacher is lovely and I know dd will like her once she feels relaxed with her.

JulieMichelleRobinson Tue 11-Mar-14 22:47:13

Where I work it's no mums from three and a half (year before school) but most have already done the mother and toddler class before. But with that class there's been a little flexibility with new children. Reception is no parents but they can usually watch from the corridor with the door open. But you'd be amazed how many children "need the toilet" ;-)

DeWe Wed 12-Mar-14 11:29:57

Totally normal.

And actually often better for the children. If the parent is there then the children will often be running over to tell the parent something, or show them something. Then you get the ones who are totally shy and hate performing in front of 20 parents. The younger siblings who are getting in the way and/or crying and the older siblings who are bored and noisy...And the pushy parents that complain at the end that their dc is the best and should by rights be going first in everything to show everyone else how to do it (and generally aren't the best, and the parent will be still complaining when they're 10yo...)

Our ballet teacher is unusual in that she lets the baby ballet (2yo) parents stay as long as the child needs them. Although it's not uncommon for her to gently suggest to a parent who wants to stay and watch that the child will be fine without them (and is always right). The older classes she would (unless there was a very good reason) do the same as you and allow for the first session but not after that. She probably would have let the visitors from New Zealand in. But she's much more relaxed than most round here.

She does a watch day at the end of term so you get to see once a term, and some of the children hate it because of being watched by so many.

Nocomet Wed 12-Mar-14 11:36:31

Totally normal, no parents at ballet or gym.

Very odd discovering parents of under 8's stay at trampolining.

DD s much older, but I´d have thought looking for approval mid somersault was a bad idea.

Flicktheswitch Wed 12-Mar-14 11:37:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LydiaLunches Wed 12-Mar-14 11:39:25

Normal from 3 in the 2 schools mine have been to.

Picturesinthefirelight Wed 12-Mar-14 13:20:27

Your dd might not be distracted by you being there but I bet the other children will be.

nonicknameseemsavailable Wed 12-Mar-14 22:50:46

yep no watching here either. my 2 settled very quickly whereas I can guarantee if I had been allowed in they would have been clingy and not joined in.

SingSongSlummy Wed 12-Mar-14 22:59:21

Totally normal - my 2 year old does a ballet class like this. No idea what they're doing for 45 mins each week,but I get to read my book in peace and she comes out beaming!

Sparklymommy Thu 13-Mar-14 11:57:22

It is normal yes, but at our dance school if you explained the situation I am sure we would allow a little leeway.

That said, at our school there is a little window and parents can stand there and watch.

The taking a doll or teddy in with her is a good one, perhaps you could try that.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 13-Mar-14 12:17:46

The same at mine, they put curtains over the glass in the doors too so you can't peek in.

cory Thu 13-Mar-14 18:49:17

yes normal

their experience is that if they allow one parent in, they will get all

some parents will want to be very closely involved, others will fidget or make a noise

and very few children can behave the same way with 20 strange adults and 15 siblings watching them

if you think about it, you aren't allowed to come in and watch your child at school either

TheGruffalo2 Sat 15-Mar-14 18:17:15

When mine were young the teacher used to let the parents sit in, as it was in a large church hall. But parents sat chatting and disturbing the lessons despite the teacher asking them not to (I felt most embarrassed and I wasn't the one talking blush ), so we were eventually all asked to wait in another room except for the end of term demonstration lesson. Later we moved to a school that had a proper studio and there just wasn't the seating space there so we all sat in the changing room. I would imagine today there would be more issues with mobile phones, photographs, etc. than there were in my day for the teacher to be concerned about as well.

AnimalsAreMyFriends Sat 15-Mar-14 18:18:59

I think it's fairly standard. At dd's dance school we get to watch the last lesson of the year.

MomOfTwoGirls2 Sat 15-Mar-14 19:26:50

Normal for us too. Ballet will take them from two and a half, so long they are able to leave mom outside the door. We don't even have a window we can peep in...

Acinonyx Sun 16-Mar-14 10:03:59

Normal - and dd couldn't be left when we tried at 5 but was able to start again at 6.

icclemunchy Mon 17-Mar-14 20:39:41

DDs 3 and we leave them at the door nanny went in with her the first week because she was a little shy but 5 weeks in and we have trouble stopping her joining the end of the class before hers!!

unlucky83 Mon 17-Mar-14 20:45:25

Normal here too - from the age of 3.5yrs!
Sit in first class if you have to, parents days twice a year where you can watch. Can watch exam classes too so you can help them get ready for the exams...
(Jazz teacher had to put a note up telling parents not to sit in the class before my DD2s the 4-6 yos - as some parents had decided the rule didn't apply to them hmm)

PoshPaula Mon 17-Mar-14 20:48:18

Yes I was (politely) asked to leave my five year old boy at his ballet class.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 18-Mar-14 07:57:24

Normal at our dance school too. There is a termly demonstration class for friends and relatives to watch.

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