Meadow Arts Facebook Meadow Arts Youtube Meadow Arts Twitter Meadow Arts Instagram

Thinking Differently – Our Journey at Chadsgrove (Part 2)

10th April 2020

Sally Harper reflects on how the Thinking Differently project has been going at Chadsgrove School.

"Thinking Differently, thinking of how to inspire the group and encouraging them to enjoy and contribute to the sessions. This was giving them the option to design and plan their own learning by documenting the process, reviewing what we’d done and allowing them to continually reflect.

The sessions were based around their ideas, we asked the group what they’d like to do each week and here are some of the ideas they suggested: Disney, animals, unicorns, painting, cutting, sewing and making. At the beginning of each session, we looked at photos from the previous session, all of the group loved seeing themselves and it enabled us to revisit and refresh what we’d started.

Over the next sessions, we developed lots of different activities including creating paper people/sculptures of their choice (there were lots of family members, pets, Disney characters and celebrities) They loved doing this - they requested this for several weeks. In addition to this, we painted, cut different materials, constructed things from recycled materials, painted acetate, used light and shadow worked on a large and small scale (working in groups and individually) and got messy!

We noticed that several of the group had become much more confident with sharing their ideas and using materials. They had also shown clear progress with how they handled materials and developed skills. There was also a notable difference in behaviour for some of the students as they participated freely without needing any intervention to help them complete the sessions.

The group have been a delight to work with alongside Julia (the art teacher) and support staff Jane and Steph.

Thank you to everyone at Chadsgrove school for making this a great experience so far. I’m very much looking forward to resuming the project whenever we can and being inspired by the group once more."

 

About the Thinking Differently project

Thinking Differently is a research project that examines the link between the way that contemporary artists think, how they work and the unique ways that neurodiverse children might respond to a theme. The aim is to find out whether really amazing, stimulating artwork can help children in SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities) schools to achieve. The Paul Hamlyn Foundation has funded the two-year-long project that takes place in three schools across the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire.

The project has been paused at the moment to ensure that everyone stays safe during the Coronavirus outbreak, but we hope to restart in the next academic year.