Toronto District School Board
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Providing students with access to effective dance programming is a priority at the Toronto District School Board. Dance education is an important part of a student’s school experience and we are proud of the strong dance programs offered across our schools. 

Dance is a strand in both the Elementary (Grades 1-8) and Secondary (Grades 9-12) provincially mandated Ontario Arts Curriculum. Expectations within all of the arts disciplines (Dance, Drama, Music, Media Arts, Visual Arts) are framed by the creative and critical thinking processes.

Dance in Elementary Schools
The elementary dance curriculum is intended to help students to develop an understanding and appreciation of dance, as well as the ability to create works using the elements and the choreographic forms of the discipline. Dance is a physical and non-verbal medium for learning about one’s self and the world; it offers the opportunity to participate in learning in kinesthetic, cognitive, and imaginative ways. (adapted from the Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1-8, The Arts)

Dance in Secondary Schools
In secondary dance programs, students develop their kinesthetic awareness and use the elements of dance to compose original dance works. Students also develop dance technique, which emphasizes physiological and safety factors while allowing them to enhance their capacity to use the body and all its parts for creative expression. Students learn about the dynamic relationship between process and product through creating their own choreography and interpreting existing dance works. (adapted from the Ontario Curriculum, Grades 9/10 and 11/12, The Arts).

Dance in TDSB schools takes many forms and can be unique to each school and broader community. In order to graduate, students are required to take an arts credit and students can enroll in multiple credits in dance from Grade 9-12. Dance courses in TDSB Secondary schools includes multiple forms and genres with a strong emphasis on creativity and student voice. In addition to comprehensive dance courses, TDSB offers many specialized focus courses including: Jazz, Performance Practice, Ballet, Music Theatre, Composition, Modern, and more.

Performance Opportunities
TDSB educators value the benefits that performance can offer to both students and the broader school community.  They are also very committed to process based learning in the classroom including the facilitation and inclusion of student creativity and critical thinking, student voice, mental health and well-being, as well as practices that explore social justice in the classroom.  TDSB educators are committed to exploring ways to use dance education as an anti-colonial practice, in classrooms, festivals, resources, and partnerships with the broader community.

In addition to offerings for students in their school programs, TDSB offers a variety of enhancements to the dance curriculum such as system wide festivals, artist residencies and artist in the classroom projects. Please see the events page for details.

Professional Learning for Teachers
All TDSB Teachers can access professional learning opportunities in Dance such as exploration classrooms and learning modules throughout the year. All TDSB board wide projects, festivals and concerts are embedded with professional learning, and are rich growth opportunities for teachers as well as students.

Schools are welcome to invite Artists from the TDSB Educational Partnership directory to their schools to enrich their dance programs with performances and/or workshops.