Dances for Schools - supported by Suffolk Folk
Suggestions are given for suitable tunes which can be downloaded by clicking on the music link for each dance to get the appropriate MP3 file. To download tunes - right click and then "save target as".
A glossary of terms is available in the Suffolk PE folder and here as a PDF file.
Formation Dance for pairs (no sets)
Music - 16 or 32-bar polkas e.g. Allo Jack / 9 'til Dawn
Face partner and hold hands.
A1 Tap heel on floor, tap toe on floor and repeat (heel, toe, heel, toe), gallop 4 steps forward (8 steps altogether). Heel and toe, heel and toe, gallop 4 steps back again (another 8 steps)
B1 Face partner, clap right hands x3, left hands x3, both hands x3, tap own knees x3, (8 beats of music). Right elbow turn with partner (8 steps)
Cumberland Square Eight
Formation 4 couples in a square set, couples facing each other are head couples and side couples
Music - 64 bar polka/jig e.g. Sick Tune / Buffalo Boys
A1 Head couples take a ballroom hold and gallop 8 steps across the set and back to place.
A2 Side couples do the same
B1 Heads couples right hand star, then left hand star, 8 steps each way
B2 Side couples do the same
C1 Head couples make a basket, or a small circle, 16 steps round to the left
C2 Side couples do the same
D1 All hold hands and circle left for 16 steps (clockwise)
D2 Take 2 hands with partner and all promenade back round to places, 16 steps to the right (anti-clockwise)
Formation 4 or 5 couples in a longways set
Music - 32-bar polka / jig e.g. Page’s Bottom / Knight to Remember
A1 Face partner across the set and hold hands in lines. 4steps forward to meet opposite line, 4 steps back to place (lines forward and back), 8steps for lines to cross into each other’s pace (lines crossover)
A2 Repeat A1 ending back in place
B1 All couples swing partner
B2 First 2 couples swing down the middle to bottom of set. Others clap and move up.
Dance starts again with new top couple
The Belgian Mixer (or Kolumtanz)
Formation couple facing couple in groups of 4 around the room
Music – Any 32 bar jig or polka- e.g. The Perfect Cure / Hindringham Long Dance
A1 Face your opposite (not your partner) Stamp 3x, clap3x, (not too fast!) Right hand star in group of 4
A2 Face your partner Stamp 3x, clap3x, Left hand star in `group of 4
B1 Do-si-do your opposite and do-si-do your partner
B2 Dance off with partner to find another couple to dance with
The Flying Scot
Formation Longways sets of 4 or 5 couples
Music - Any 32 bar jig or polka- e.g. Page’s Bottom / Knight to Remember
A1 Girls join hands and skip around the boys’ line
A2 Boys join hands and skip around the girls’ line
B1 Top couple gallop down the middle of the set to bottom of the room and back to the BOTTOM of the set. (new top couple)
B2 All couples gallop to the bottom of the room and back.
French Circle Dance
Formation In a circle– boys and girls alternately
Music - Any 32 bar polka e.g. ‘Allo Jack / Nine til Dawn
A1 Gallop 16 steps to left.
A2 Gallop 16 steps to the right, then the boys spring to face girls with their backs to centre of circle.
B1 Walk 4 steps out of circle, then 4 steps back
Turn partner with both hands ( walk) Boy move on to next girl around the circle (move to the right)
B2 Clap hands 3 times. Stamp 3 times. Turn partner again.
Formation Square set for 4 couples (Numbered 1-4)
Music - Any 32 bar jig e.g. Hungry Army / Rogues Wedding
A1 All join hands and circle left for 16 steps.
A2 Do-si-do your corner and do-si-do your partner.
B1 Swing your partner,
A1 Number 1 couple go to couple on their right (2nd couple) who make an arch. Number 1 couple go through the arch, separate around them, back into the middle and swing.
A2 Number 1 couple repeat through 3rd couple’s arch
B1 Number 1 couple repeat through 4th couple’s arch
B2 All hold hands in couples, promenade in a circle around the set and back to place.
Repeat with each other couple leading in turn and finish with the chorus.
Bridge of Athlone
Formation Longways set of 5 couples
Music - 48 bar jig e.g. The Weymouth Quickstep
A1 Take hands in lines and dance forward to meet and back. Then forward to meet and cross over, boys making arches.
A2 As above, this time girls make arches. Everyone ends up back where they started.
B1 Top couple gallop down the middle of the set and back to place
B2 Top couple cast around the back of their lines and meet to make an arch at the bottom of the set. Other couples follow and dance through the arch (new top couple)
C1 All except the original top couple make arches. Original top girl dances up the tunnel and down the outside while her partner dances up the outside of the set and back down the tunnel.
C2 All swing partners
Boston Tea Party
Formation Longways set of 5 or 6 couples
Music - 32 bar jig e.g. The Quaker’s Wife / Year in Provence
A1 Top couple gallop down middle of set, dance to top of set making an arch over the boys’ line.
A2 Continue back down the set, arching over the girls’ line
B1 Top couple dip and dive down the set (start by going under the next couple’s arch) and make an arch at the bottom Others cast out down the backs of their lines and come back through the arch (new top couple)
B2 All swing partners.
The Waterloo Dance
Formation 4 couples in a square set
Music – 48 bar polka e.g. Little White Horse
A1 All hold hands and circle left then right (8 steps each way)
A2 All dance into middle and out then do-si-do with partner
B1 Side couples make arches, head couples cast away from partner, in through the side arches and join hands in a circle of 4 in center. Circle once round to left and back to place.
B2 Head couples make arches and sides cast as above.
Girls left hand star half way
round the set, right hand turn with opposite boy.
Girls then complete the left hand star. Right hand turn with partner back to place
C2 All polka or gallop around the square and back to place