Last Friday I went to the globe to participate in a workshop with Keith Park and two schools from North London which had students that had complex disabilities.
The workshop was based on Shakespeares 'Romeo and Juliet' It was split into eigtht parts all said as call and response with a very definate rhythm through out. Everything was done in Makaton, and some words were said in Hebrew. Although Keith Park was involved in the workshop the person driving the workshop itself was an autistic teenager called PJ. It was very interesting how he remembered all the lines, made up jokes when we were playing a name game. It was successful because he had so much passion for what he was doing, in some sense it seemed that Drama had allowed him to become a confident individual and to be able to express himself in a way that best suited him. I also felt that having a child with high support needs in charge of a workshop helped the other children feel more enthusiastic about joining in the workshop, perhaps there was a stronger sense of identification?
Drama had helped him do things that are considered to be un-autistic, he made eye contact and was incredibly social. In my opinion Drama might have played a part in helping someone with a learning disability do things that would never have been expected of them.