TEACHERS are being put through their paces as part of a Strictly-style dance contest between county youngsters.

Teachers are rehearsing once a week at Headington’s Step By Step dance school in Windmill Road, so they can teach pupils some moves.

About 300 children from 20 primary schools will take part in Strictly Junior 2014 in Oxford’s New Theatre, George Street on Tuesday, February 4.

Pupils from Year 5 and 6 are learning dance moves in PE and after school.

Among the teachers learning dances like the cha-cha-cha is Windmill Primary School, Headington headteacher Lynn Knapp and teacher Anne Leslie.

Mrs Knapp – a keen dancer – said: “It has been brilliant, I have loved every minute of it. It has been exciting for me to learn something new.”

Banbury Cake:

  • HANDS UP: Windmill School headteacher, Lynn Knapp, left, and teacher Anne Leslie in action

Lisa Brown, a PE teacher at Ducklington Primary School, has been coaching the team there and at Witney’s Aston and Cote CofE Primary School.

Miss Brown, 27, of Southmoor near Abingdon said: “We’re trying to make dance fun, especially for boys. When you tell boys they have to dance in PE, they always groan at you, but we’ve managed to get eight boys from my two schools up to a good level.

“Now, they are really enjoying it which is fabulous, to raise awareness that dance is a good PE subject.”


Banbury Cake:

  • Waltz this way: Left, Anthea Morland, helper and dance student, with Lisa Brown, head of PE at Ducklington and Aston & Cote schools

On Thursday night teachers had another rehearsal at Step by Step where they are getting expert tuition from Andrzej Mialkowski.

He teaches them the dances and they take what they have learned back to the classroom.

Miss Brown said that Ducklington Primary School was going to be holding a miniature ‘Strictly’ show of its own on February 26 and 27 to give all the pupils a chance to perform for parents.

She said: “We are trying to increase participation.

“Dance is part of the PE curriculum, so everyone has to do it, but we want them to enjoy it.

Banbury Cake:

  • TA-DAA: Left, Angela Leggett dancing with daughter Hannah Leggett – both are teaching assistants at Eynsham Primary

“When the boys and girls dance together, they look fantastic, and it’s actually better if you have boys doing boys parts, rather than girls pretending to be boys.”

Tickets for theStrictly Junior 2014 final show on February 4 will be available soon from atgtickets.com/ venues/new-theatre-oxford.

People can follow the training and keep up to date at facebook.com/strictlyoxford