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all aboard after school clubs

A boy wearing headphones, glasses and a striped t-shirt singing into a microphone as part of a darts in Doncaster music project

All Aboard is our programme of creative opportunities for children and young people with disabilities. Professional artists deliver engaging and accessible sessions in a range of art forms including music, dance, visual art and drama. We deliver sessions in all five Doncaster Special Schools both in class time and as after school clubs, as well as building relationships with families who can then access our weekend, after school and holiday sessions at The Point, our town centre building.

We are passionate in our belief that all children and young people should experience the same opportunities in life and our creative opportunities are designed to provide essential life skills so that disabled young people can reach their full potential. Our artists are expert in designing bespoke activity that responds to ability level and need, ensuring that all participants are included and responded to within a session, whether they have a learning disability, limited or no movement, Autism or profound and complex physical and medical needs.

All Aboard After School Clubs
darts artists deliver after school clubs in special schools across Doncaster. Every child is supported to achieve their own goals and improve their essential life skills. These skills support their transition into adulthood and help them to be real life ready. We deliver a range of creative activities including music/music tech, visual arts, photography, sculpture and poetry. Workshops are specifically designed in response to individual children’s needs and abilities.

For example, six weeks of activity was delivered at Heatherwood School by musician, Moony Wainwright and visual artist, Karen Hall. Sessions always started with the ‘hello’ song, which becomes familiar and encourages interaction of participants; handing round a microphone and choice of instruments to play.

Moony created a bespoke instrument for one young person who has unbound movement and can make sounds but has no speech. A pocket synthesizer was connected to a large drum that vibrated and changed rhythm in response to the boy’s movement. Sequins sprinkled on top of the drum, jumped and shone with the vibrations. The boy was able to manipulate the instrument: he could put his teeth on it, put his arms around it or hit it. This captivated the boy for a full three minutes, which is a record.

Young boy in a wheelchair doing an art project supported by a teacher - darts in Doncaster

Other children were creating sensory projections using glue, food dye and salt so colours popped and exploded around them. The artists get to know the children and create new ways for them to access opportunities that they wouldn’t get anywhere else.

We have seen real progress in the children and young people participating in the programme – they have shown greater ability to make choice through choosing: instruments, whether or not to sing into the microphone, an activity, colours, what/how much material to use e.g. glitter, paint, oil, glue, sequins. One boy who was thought to be non-vocal began making sounds to join in.

We have seen an improvement in children’s ability to listen and improve their musical and creative skills as a result. Confidence and communication skills have also improved significantly with some children who were initially incredibly shy or unwilling to join in becoming lively, confident performers creating complex rhythms or coming up with brilliant song lyrics.

all aboard   disability   makaton   special schools

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