Thursday's drama session with Franki was full of wonderful surprises..... My first time at the school in a month, and was so pleased to see the children could remember me, and felt at ease in my presence. Not only that, but they all showed clear signs of familiarity with with donkey, and his music, most showing delight at donkey's presence. We invited the students to role play being donkey through wearing their self made costume pieces and crawling on all fours....which for some not physically as able was a big deal....Particularily with the classes of Room 2 and Banksia. What may seem an easy task needed quite a bit of preparation, with arm and leg braces and supports neeeding to be put on.... thankfully good communication with the teachers, Sarah and Anna, prior to the session meant everyone was prepared at the moment the task was suggested, and a cacophony of velcro straps broke out as each EA attached the appropriate supports. The activity to crawl was considered a positive task reinforcing development of movement, motorskills, and left/right brain engagement. We used leaf like jubes as an incentive for the students to creep like Donkey to eat a leaf from the Jub Jub tree. Some were tentative to taste the leaf, though a few students didn't need too much encouragement!
The highlight for me was using the drum to engage the students towards the end of the session... In room 2 Harry's eyes lit up when he saw the drum, and was able to walk to me unassisted to play it. We played the drum together and he displayed excelent listening and sence of rhythm. His playing developed rapidly from one hand beating, to two hands simultaneously, to alternate left right beating. Quite an evolution!! Well done Harry! And he looked extremely happy. I understand room 2 are now using the drum as an incentive for Harry to walk unaided.
I Deanne's and Alicia's class, all students had a play, each demonstrating excellent listening , and enthusiasm to play in time. Feeling and expressing rhythm is something so instinctive, i love seeing how it engages students to be in the present moment, and gives them a sense of free expression and empowerment. good on ya drum!