In the heat wave of July this year, Unbeatable Energy worked with a mixed group of Year 6 children from Sunnyfield Primary School and Bentley High Street Academy in Doncaster. We spent an entire day with the children who played and danced to the fantastic beats of the drums. The whole day workshop culminated with a big performance the next day at the Doncaster Dome. But on the first day, as the sun got higher in the sky, the room got hotter, and everyone began to get sleepier - and we ourselves were struggling to live up to the name on our tin! We were feeling apprehensive about the performance the next day as the previous day's workshop in the heat seemed as though it hadn't quite ended with the loud 'fun drum' frenzy we are normally used to. Well we needn't have been worried. Even though the children had been hot and tired they were completely alive the next day! In fact this really was one of those special events which reminded us of what African Drumming Workshops for school's are for. The testimonial from the Deputy Head at Bentley High Street Academy says it all:
The children came into school again today, all very excited about last night! We were singing the song you sang with them as we lined up before entering school!
The workshop and presentation was excellent. You gave us the opportunity of seeing a child, who has been through so much, coming to life through his performance on stage! It was truly magical. It was made even more perfect by the presence of his foster parents and mother in the audience. He rarely is able to see his mother; so he really relished the opportunity of performing on stage in front of her. He couldn't stop smiling!
The child only joined main stream education in October of last year, so for him the experience of performing on stage with you was wonderful. The child also struggles immensely with concentration and the ability to manage his behaviour. Whilst drumming, he was focused and seemed really content. Thank you so much for allowing him this opportunity. As we watched, all staff were very emotional especially our headteacher!
Deputy Head Teacher Bentley high Street Academy, Doncaster
Receiving this testimonial really is a piece of gold for us. It sums up what these events are really all about - making an difference to people's lives!
African Drumming and Dance Workshops in schools create amazing opportunities for children who might normally struggle in academic subjects. It gives them the chance to grow in confidence and excel in something highly engaging and creative.