Blur mummy never realised that there are two different ballet syllabus. I only realised when the Crestar counter staff told me RA will be having open house last Fri so that parents can decide whether to register them for ballet exam next April.
Apparently, there is RAD (annual exam every April) and CSTD (exam every April and Oct). All the mummies friends and my cousin, Shirley, whom I asked, have daughters taking the RAD ballet UK syllabus. None were taking CSTD, the Australian syllabus.
But RA and RL's teacher, Ms Qiu Li Tong at Crestar Tampines is teaching CSTD syllabus. Basically, RAD is more widely recognised and is more technical while CSTD emphasises more on performance. I did some research on my own too. There is more discussion at ksparents for those who are interested to know the difference.
So now, I got to decide if I want to switch from CSTD to RAD. I got both gals to do a trial at Sunday morning 1145am with Ms Joy Foo the RAD teacher as recommended by Valerie's mum (RA's cc classmate). RA was quite reluctant initially cos she wanted to stick to Ms Litong's class and she doesn't want to do exams. But I asked her to just try out once first. If she doesn't like it. I will just let her learn ballet for another year and forget about exams for now.
Ms Joy has a very big class of at least 20 kids, first with older gals (p3 or p4) as well as those 4-6 yrs old. But she will spilt up the groups and let the younger gals sit and watch the older gals. Then about a short while later, the older gals will exit and she will focus on the younger ones. When I peeped in, I saw my gals playing with big shiny pom pom balls and thought to myself, hey, that looks fun. How come I never saw RA doing that before. Valerie's mummy, told me that's because the pom pom balls are part of RAD syllabus. Valerie has been learning from Ms Joy Foo since she was 3 yrs old.
Ahh.... No wonder. We never knew what we were missing. haha.
Anyway, the magic of pom pom balls for just one 45 minutes lesson cannot be underestimated. After the class, I asked them if they enjoyed. And both did. I asked RA if she wants to go to Ms Joy Foo class. She said yes. I asked her if she wants to try the ballet exam and have 1 extra ballet practice per week and she also said yes.
I asked Ms Joy Foo and she is happy with both their performance. She said if I don't mind RL waiting one more year before she can take exams in 2015, both gals can be in the same class. Of course I didn't mind. I am glad that I can drop off both gals cos logistically it is easier than having back to back ballet lessons on Friday nights from 730 to 9pm. But I will be on my own to bring both gals on the bus since hb is not free on Sun mornings.
Since RA wants to do the pre primary ballet exam, we still need to send her on Fri evening 645pm for coaching class from Oct to March. But at least it will not finish as late at 9pm. So logistically it is better.
Since RA enjoys ballet for now, I will expose her to extra coaching ($600 for 6 mths, not cheap) and try the exam and see if she can take it. I really don't want to overload her after she starts primary 1 so I feel K2 is a better time to test water about taking ballet exams. If she loves ballet even more, will consider letting her continue with the yearly exam syllabus. But if she hates it, we can either drop ballet or just let her learn for leisure. Either way, it will give me a better idea how to maximise our limited enrichment budget.