20 June 2022 10:42
Learning Disability Week
20-26 June is Learning Disability Week and to illustrate our belief that dance is for 'every body', we're taking the opportunity to highlight two of our own projects: RADiate which provides subsidised inclusive dance classes with specialised Dance Artists, to children with additional learning needs, and Step into Dance which delivers classes in SEND (Special educational needs and disability) schools for secondary school aged students along with dance companies that offer inclusive dance training.
RADiate sessions aim to engage children and young people through dance, movement, music and sensory props, and to develop their physicality and boost their self-esteem. Each session is created to respond to the individual needs of the children with a Dance Artist working alongside the school staff to engage and encourage each child using ideas based on class topics, or led by their interests.
"I love that the RADiate project is an inclusive project and that we make dance and movement accessible to young participants. I love that we facilitate a way for young people to express themselves creatively and feel confident in their bodies. The RADiate team is small but very supportive for us freelance practitioners. One of the great benefits of working on this project is that throughout the year we have several training sessions that allow us to share and discuss our current practices and also provides the opportunity for us to broaden our horizons as dance artists."
Maria Cassar, RADiate Dance Artist
Many of the children find it difficult to engage in group activities, however RADiate Dance Artists are experienced in using activities that will attract the children into the group, so that taking part becomes a fun experience. This is done in close collaboration with each school and the teaching staff, and with the families of the children attending classes at the RAD headquarters.
Find out more on our RADiate page, with information on how parents and teachers can get involved.
Step into Dance
Step into Dance is the largest inclusive dance programme in the UK, reaching over six thousand secondary school students annually across London and Essex to offer regular dance classes. A partnership with the Jack Petchey Foundation, Step into Dance, we are currently delivering classes into 26 SEND schools and one PRU (Pupil referral unit) across London and Essex, with practitioners tailoring the sessions to suit the needs of the students. These schools are invited to get involved in all performance opportunities, and we have two SEND schools performing at the Step Live Festival, our annual end of year performance on 12 July 2022 (tickets on sale now).
Our companies meet every Sunday at RAD headquarters to rehearse and are also fully inclusive and open to SEND students from London and Essex up to the ages of 25.
Students can register their interest for the 2022/23 company here.
SEND schools and PRUs can sign up for classes for the 2022/23 school year here.