Dying swans

After debating it for a few months, we have finally signed the girls up for ballet classes. They absolutely adored the one-off class they attended on holiday and G even told her old keyworker at nursery that she had ballet, tennis AND swimming lessons. I had to point out that none of this was true, lest they think that we spoil our children with a zillion extra-curricular activities. Now, at least, G isn’t lying about one of the activities. A couple of their friends from nursery attend a class in a church hall about two minutes walk away from us on Saturday mornings, so it made sense to book them in for a taster session.

The dance school runs ballet classes for 3-4 year olds and ballet and tap for 4-5 year olds. The teacher suggested that as they are nearly four, they could try out both classes and see which they preferred. We didn’t tell their friends (or their parents) that we would be at yesterday’s class so there were some surprised (and pleased) looks when they arrived.

I’ll say one thing for R and G – they don’t lack confidence. There were a couple of other new starters and they were much more reticent but the girls got stuck in straight away. I guess that one of the great things about being a twin is that you’re never alone when you try something new and it probably helped that a couple of people they knew were already established members of the class

Eventually we’ll be able to drop them off and disappear for half an hour while they attend the class but yesterday Dh and I stayed to watch. They are both very co-ordinated (far more than me) and R has the potential to master the technical skills while G is more in tune with the ‘drama’ of the dance. R absolutely adored the tap dancing section of the older class and took the opportunity to stomp around with the other girls.

I spoke to the teacher afterwards and she said it looked like the girls could cope with either class, so it was up to us. I said that they would do the 3-4 years ballet class this term, and move up to the ballet and tap class after Christmas. I’m confident that they could cope in the older class now, but their friends (who both now attend prep school and therefore the girls don’t see them as much) are in the ballet class and from a purely practical point of view I wanted to spread the cost of two sets of ballet and tap gear over a few months, rather than one massive hit.

We’ve been given a list of clothes and shoes to buy – pink leotards, tights and ballet shoes for ballet and the same clothes for tap but different (preferably white) shoes. There’s a shop about four miles away and we’ll be going there to kit the girls out in the week because we went there today and it was closed. The Academy puts a show on at the end of the Summer Term (the photos from the last one were adorable) and, if the girls are still interested, they have the chance to do exams when they get a bit older.

For now, I just want them to have a great time prancing about in girlie outfits. They already do Sporty Tots at nursery (yes, G does it as well now) so I think we’re covering both ends of the activity spectrum. The only sticking point I can see is that, ideally, their hair needs to be neat and ‘up’. As they both have reasonably short hair and absolutely hate having it brushed or tamed in any way, we may have to strap them to a chair or style them when they’re asleep bribe them work on that.

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