Supported by Youth Music and using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, Music Treehouse is a much needed SEN/D extension of our Saturday Programme music school which offers students with a range of conditions the opportunity to participate in the programme, enabling us to broaden our inclusion to students who are often isolated and overlooked outside of the school environment.
The Music Treehouse has two branches:
The first branch is for students who are still in mainstream education but who need 1:1 or 1:3 support, and who would normally struggle with the group atmosphere of our Saturday Programme. Being a small charity, we have previously been unable to integrate students who would not need 1:1 support. Ongoing CPD sessions for the tutors at the mainstream SP programme, have meant that with the support of specialist TAs, students can now be integrated and included in the programme, in a way that is beneficial to them. Liaising with the teachers the TAs tailor each class to the specific needs of the child and ensure that all activities are obtainable, they remain in the class and when needed, they have the support with them, to find their own path.
The second branch is for students with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties, including those with ASD and Physical Disabilities who are unable to access the mainstream programmes. MT branch 2, is about interaction, and basing the learning around the students, rather than the students learning a set curriculum. It is a reactive user-led environment. There are three streams to Branch 2:
Shoots – our Music Box programme which has been specifically tailored for students with SEN/D. This is for students aged 2 years – 5 years.
Saplings – the primary stream of the programme. This is led by Tim Yealland alongside percussionist Tom Highnam.
Trees – our secondary stream of the programme led by Jason Rowland, with a team of two musicians, Epsie Thompson (flute) and Bridget Carey (violin), and two SEN TAs who both work at local Special Schools and therefore know many of the students.
Working alongside both Shoots and Trees is an HCPC registered Music Therapist Sylvia Saunders from the Music Therapy Tree run by Camilla Farrant, one of our core partners.