The Special Schools Project made possible with the generous support of:
The Special Schools Project was made possible with a startup grant from
Hackney Special Schools
Jubilee (Visually Impaired Unit)
Special Schools Project
Set up in 2003, HMDT's Special Schools Project has been designed to bring music to students with varying abilities and needs. The programme enables new skills and techniques to be introduced to students and staff, engaging students with a range of learning opportunities not always available to them and develops performance opportunities in which students gain confidence, increase communication skills, enjoy themselves and gain a sense of achievement.
HMDT offers a wide range of projects developed in partnership with the schools and brings in highly skilled artists in education. Work includes: video projects (The Suitcase, Colours of Sadness and Hiderseekers) in which students devise and perform a musical piece, assist in filming and create and perform a soundtrack; Indian dance; African drumming and dance; DJ courses, and Music Theatre, in which a story and music are devised and performed, often with supporting artwork.
The team were skillful in assessing children’s levels of understanding, and in breaking a complex story about an animal school into simple steps. Work in the hour consisted of children learning performance songs, movements and developing an understanding of the storyline, and their parts in it. In addition there were art sessions, in which children worked on scenery. The performance at the end of the summer term surpassed expectations, and children, staff and visitors greatly enjoyed the show. The performance is important, but the real value is in the process of children learning new skills and developing the ability to work with others, which is something that many of our children find difficult.
Bill Bulman, Head Teacher Downsview School
It was an extremely exciting and quite demanding project and everyone told me how much they enjoyed making the video, especially being able to help out with filming, acting, in front of the camera and composing music. The team who worked with the pupils was first – class, supportive and understanding and as facilitators they made it more than possible for our students to create a first class film.
Duncan Melvin, Arts Co-ordinator Horizon School