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Central Auckland Specialist School

Region: Auckland

Art form: Music

Project name: Connecting through Music

Creative name:

Project Information:
Our aim is to provide all our learners the opportunity to express their creativity through music, experience joy and connection through music, increase communication and communication intent and develop their self-regulatory skills with the support of music.

Our learners have a range of special needs, including cerebral palsy, autism spectrum and other developmental disorders, genetic disorders such as Down syndrome, complex medical conditions, traumatic brain injuries, mental health disorders, exposure to family violence and neglect, and poor community engagement due to socioeconomic challenges. Due to their physical, cognitive and behavioural challenges, the vast majority of our clients cannot participate in community activities such as sport, music lessons, drama and art. Music therapy provides them with the chance to express themselves, develop independence, engage with their community, and develop meaningful relationships.  Music almost universally brings joy and has a positive impact on mental health. All of these benefits are vital for our learners.

The partnership between the creative and the teacher may lead to an increased understanding of the student's preferences, impact of music options for self- regulation and learning. The creative models strategies for the teacher to use; even if the expert playing of a musical instrument is not at the centre,  it supports the teacher to use recorded music and percussion instruments to help students develop on task behaviour and shared attention. It provides our learners with an added layer of exposure to rich and good quality learning experiences, which they might not otherwise have.

Project starting: February 2023

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