Celebrating Learning Disability Week with The Hollies

14 Jun 2019

5 mins
Celebrating Learning Disability Week with The Hollies

This week (17-23 June) marks Learning Disability Week and we thought that it would be a perfect opportunity to celebrate The Hollies - winners of Into Film Club of the Year: Primary at the 2019 Into Film Awards.

Engagement with film has benefited the specialist school for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in a number of essential ways, from giving non-verbal students an avenue to express themselves to allowing the club to enjoy the cinema experience in an immersive but safe environment.

Below, Digital Therapist for The Hollies, Yasmin John delves into the importance of film for her club.

As a special school for children with autism spectrum disorder we welcome every opportunity to enrich our pupils' educational journey. The Hollies Into Film Club is great because it opens up their worlds by encouraging them to communicate, socially interact and access the curriculum. 

Our children are passionate about learning through film and we use it in the classroom and all around the school. Introducing characters from recent screenings as a motivator has led to increased engagement and effort. For our children who are non-verbal it gives them a voice through the animations they are now able to produce themselves.

The Hollies Into Film Club is great because it opens up their worlds by encouraging them to communicate, socially interact and access the curriculum.

Digital Therapist at The Hollies, Yasmin John

Visiting the cinema is a huge barrier for many of our students so we created our own immersive cinema experience, screening films from the Into Film catalogue for pupils to access in a safe, accepting environment. The cinema is utilised by all pupils from Reception to Year 6 with classes coming together for screenings. Posters are presented the week before so they are aware of when it's happening and students ‘buy' their ticket in advance using two pieces of work relating to the film. After the screening they create film reviews, storyboards and short animations. The positive feedback we have had from parents has been incredible, with many now able to enjoy regular visits to the cinema as a family. 

In the past year we have also attended the Into Film Festival and other special screenings such as the Early Man preview, hosted a training session in the use of Into Film resources in an additional needs situation, attended careers events and used Into Film resources for integrating film into our implementation of the new Welsh curriculum - which we showcased to members of Government. Attending the Into Film Awards and winning Into Film Club of the Year was the icing on the cake. 

Yasmin's 5 Recommended Films:

If you're feeling inspired by The Hollies, you can easily sign up for an Into Film Club at any time and submissions are now open for the 2020 Into Film Awards.

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