Over 11 weeks in 2017, poet and spoken word artist Martin Daws inspired and collaborated with 27 pupils at Ysgol Cedewain, their teachers and support staff, to explore issues of interdependence, identity and sustainability. Asking the question “Where does our stuff come from? Where does it go to?”, the project enabled teenagers with complex additional learning needs to learn about the origins of their favourite things, investigate their own sense of identity and to help them become more aware of the effect their actions and choices have on others, both in their everyday lives and on the other side of the world.
|Using the green screen|
Linked with the Global Learning Programme, the project helped pupils learn about materials, global trade and geography, while developing confidence and skills in literacy, oracy, performance, creative writing and digital competence. With Martin and their teachers, they used voice, sound and rhythm to develop and record rap poems, audio pieces and make physical artworks.
|Recording their rap|
The project was celebrated with the artist, participants, family members and special guests in a multi-sensory one-day exhibition and event at Oriel Davies. Visitors encountered sound, sculpture, collaged flags, writing and film. Poems in bottles suspended among colourful fish sculptures accompanied the young people's audio piece, ‘Sea of Sad’, about the toxic effects of plastic detritus on marine wildlife. Giant 3D letters and a rap tune written and performed by pupils, reflected their investigations into the origins of everyday things and the vast distances travelled by container ships to bring these to Wales.
|Dancing in the installation at Oriel Davies|
As Creative Agent for Arts Council Wales’ Lead Creative Schools scheme, Oriel Davies’ Learning Officer Helen Kozich supported Ysgol Cedewain staff, pupils and artist Martin Daws in delivering a collaborative, creative, multi-sensory learning project. YsgolCedewain is a large day special school in Newtown, Powys which provides education for 119 pupils aged 3 to 19 years, who experience a wide range of educational, physical and sensory difficulties.