Create and Dance Nutcracker Immersive

Join Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya, as he goes on a ten-week journey with The Royal Ballet into Peter Wright's production of The Nutcracker. During this course you'll take your class through motif-development, character dancing and performance skills - completing the programme with your very own piece of choreography to submit for the Creative Challenge.

This ten week programme has been created to give Key Stage 2 pupils an introduction to dance. With strong curriculum links, the programme aims to give children a better understanding of dance, build their physical skill and unlock imagination and creativity.

Teachers do not need any previous dance knowledge in order to take part. The Royal Opera House provides teacher training, classroom films, lesson plans and resources and the guidance and support you need to complete the programme. You will find references in this scheme of work to information provided at the teacher training sessions. (For more information on these days, check The Project tab) If you have not attended the INSET days hopefully you will still find this course a useful introduction to ballet and The Nutcracker.

The aim of the programme is to create a short dance, inspired by a theme from The Nutcracker and linking to curriculum topics or school projects. The themes include 'Let the battle commence', 'Transformed by magic' and 'Travelling to far-away lands'.

  • Immersive Lesson 1: Getting Started

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Choreographic ideas
    • Clear empty space
    • Means of capture

    During this lesson, your dancers will explore the characters and themes of The Nutcracker and devise some useful motifs that you’ll be able to build on as the project progresses. Each lesson will include activities that will help create and refine the dance you and your dancers are working on.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Getting Started
      5mins
    • The Nutcracker Story
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Getting Started
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Choosing a Theme
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive Lesson 2: Communicating in Character

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Choreographic ideas
    • Clear empty space
    • Means of capture
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet

    In this lesson, you'll be working on developing character in your dance. You could brainstorm scenarios, objects or characters that might be included in your dance that align to your theme.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Communicating in Character
      5mins
    • The Nutcracker – Meet the Characters
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Mime
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Communicating in Character
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive - Lesson 3: Developing Movement Patterns

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • Record of last performance
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Music

    Your task in this lesson is to help the dancers develop their movement phrases so that they start to grow and become even more interesting to look at.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Developing Movement Patterns
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Levels and Dynamics
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Developing Motifs
      30mins
  • Immersive - Lesson 4: Find Your Space

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • Record of last performance
    • PE kit and bare feet

    In this lesson, you'll be starting to think about how the performance space can be used in your final performance.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Find your Space
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Stage
      5mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive - Lesson 5: Working Together

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Record of last performance

    This week we are going to be thinking about a very particular aspect of The Royal Ballet’s performances, and that is the role of the corps de ballet.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Working Together
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Together
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Unison Phrases
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive – Lesson 6: Film, Camera, Action!

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Record of last performance
    • Means of capture

    At this stage in the process you will film the dance as it is to send to the Royal Opera House for feedback and suggestions, which will help you and the class continue to refine the dance over the next five weeks.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Film, Camera, Action!
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Collect and Stick Game
      5mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive – Lesson 7: Entrances And Exits

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Record of last performance
    • Clear empty space
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet

    When we dance, we are performing to an audience so it is really important that each dancer is aware of where they are at every moment in the dance, and also how they get there.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Entrances and Exits
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Stage
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Collect and Stick Game
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Together
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Structural Devices
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive - Lesson 8: Developing Character

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Clear empty space
    • Lesson Film
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Record of last performance

    In this lesson, the focus will be on developing the characters that populate your dance and also thinking about how you are using the performance space to enhance the development of your dance.

    Units/Activities

    • Ballet Warm Up: Character and Intention
      5mins
    • Nutcracker Video: Developing Character
      5mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Immersive - Lesson 9: Performance Skills

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • Music
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Costumes

    This lesson is all about getting ready for the big performance.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Performance Skills
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Performance Skills
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Final Rehearsal
      30mins
  • Immersive – Lesson 10: The Grand Finale

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Clear empty space
    • Costumes
    • Means of capture
    • Music

    In this lesson you will film your dance for submission to the Creative Challenge. Make sure it is uploaded to the Royal Opera House’s website by the deadline.

    Units/Activities

    • Ballet Warm Up: Count to 20
      5mins
    • Creative Exploration: Final Rehearsal
      30mins