This Level introduces new dancers to the elementary formations and the steps of Scottish Country Dancing.  They will obtain a degree of sociability and feeling for the dance and learn dances incorporating these elements.


STEPS (including characteristics of each step)

Skip Change of Step

Slip Step

Pas de Basque with emphasis on rhythm

Strathspey Travelling

Common Schottische (Strathspey Setting)



Advance and Retire – 2, 4 bars

Allemande for 2 couples/Allemande for 3 couples

Back to back

Bow and Curtsey

Casting – 1, 2 or 3 places, Off or Up

             - Cast Off for 4 steps and up for 4 steps

             - Cross Over and Cast Off

             - Set and Cast Off/Up

             - Turn and Cast Off

Corner Formations  - Corner Chain

                                - Turn corners and partner           

Cross Over – 2 bars

Figure of 8 on the sideline

Figure of 8 across the dance

Half figure of 8 across the dance

Grand Chain for 3 couples

Hands Across  – Four hands across and back

                        - Four hands across half-way round

                        - Three hands across

Hands Round/ Hands Round and Back (jig, reel and strathspey time)

Ladies’ Chain

Lead Down the Middle and Up

Lead Down the Middle and Up followed by Cast Off

Petronella Turn

Poussette for 2 couples in reel and jig time

Promenade for 2 couples/Promenade for 3 couples

Reels of 4 on the sidelines

Reels of 3 on the sidelines - Right Shoulder/Left Shoulder (6, 8 bars)

Reels of 3 across the dance – Right Shoulder/Left Shoulder

Rights and Lefts for 2 couples  (8 bars)

Half  Rights and Lefts – 4 bars

Stepping Up or Down

Turns - 1 hand, 2 hands (strathspey only) – 2, 4 bars





Difference between a Reel and a Jig

Difference between a Strathspey and a Slow Air




Beginner Level dancers will be introduced to the following concepts and given instruction and practice in them:


Covering                      – alignment with other dancers who are dancing the same pattern          


Dance Courtesy            - Helping others

                                    - Dance with different partners

                                    - Teamwork – supporting couples remain alert!

                                    - Proper use of hands

                                    - Eye contact


Dance Etiquette            - Wait for the dance to be called

                                    - Join at the bottom of sets as they form

                                    - Dance only dances within capabilities

                                    - Counting off

                                    - Listen to briefing/teacher

                                    - Thank partner and set


Phrasing                       – “be in the right place at the right time”


Posture             - “Dance tall”


Progression                  - in 2, 3 and 4 couple dances


Spirit of the Dance        - Socialize

                                    - Have fun!  Smile!



Before moving to the Basic Level, the dancer

                                    - should obtain the recommendation to do so from the teacher of  his/her current class.  

                                    - should be able to perform the above Beginner syllabus items with  some confidence.

                                    - should be able to do some Beginner Level dances with one walk- through for each couple.




                                                                                                                                                                                      May 2003