The goal of this multiplier event was to elicit need of teachers with respect to the use of rhythm-based arts to promote creativity and inclusion in schools. Meetings with teachers from two schools was planned to achieve this goal:
Meeting at Howes School: Rebecca Bollands, the head teacher, showed us the school’s facilities and the teaching methods that the teachers are employing for helping the students to learn. We have seen a number of teaching strategies from using simple strategies, technologies and tools to help pupils to learn how to count and do multiplications to how disabled students, especially with hearing problems, can learn how to count and how to communicate with each other. Then we gathered at the teacher’s room and we started to discuss how we will integrate rhythm to all best practices and examples we have seen from Howes.
Meeting at Stivichall School: We have experienced the different teaching and learning approaches that teachers use such as Forest teaching and learning. Students are learning how to build things, how to learn about rules and be resilient and reflective. Problem-solving, inquiry and critical thinking were strategies that teachers employed for helping students to overcome difficulties, to design their own gardens and to repair constructions out in the wild.
After the forest teaching, teachers at Howes showed us how the teach philosophy with 9 years old students where they were debating about a topic raised by the teacher (e.g. do you think it is better to follow the rules or to help others?). Music lessons that helped students to understand the importance of rhythm and how to play music instruments was a highlight. Drawing with students and their parents for building collaborations and a sense of belonging and team building was key as a teaching approach for bringing together students, parents and teachers.
We concluded the multiplier event and our visit to Stivichall school by attending a PhD study presentation by a Coventry University Research Student – Ms. Yael Owen McKenna who presented her study around dance-based pedagogies and then we discussed trajectories with the rhythm project. The rhythm partnership will exploit Yael’s presentation to understand better the role of dance on rhythm especially for severe profound and multiple learning difficulties students.