On Wednesday 17th February we visited the Seashell Trust School & College in Cheshire, renowned for their care of and dedication to children and young adults with profound and multiple physical and learning disabilities. We were there to deliver a three-hour inclusive sports training session to 14 CADS (children’s able and disabled sports) students, coaches, care assistants and parents.
We kicked off the session by talking about our own involvement working with pupils with special needs and the difficulties we experience when delivering a PE session. One of the issues raised is not having the right equipment to cover all of the various needs across the spectrum. Another common problem is not having any specific lesson plans for making the lessons inclusive as well as being fun and interactive.
We delivered a one-hour session using the LUSU equipment, showing how to get everyone involved in the same lesson but working at their own level. The students then spent some time in groups with the LUSUKIT bag, playing around with the equipment and devising their own way of using it.
A role play session was undertaken to discover the ideas that each individual had created. It was really interesting to see what they had come up with, especially as most of the ideas were about how the kit could be used for able bodied adults, not necessarily children and young adults with various disabilities - some of which can be quite severe. We then regrouped to work through how some concepts would work and why others wouldn’t.
In smaller groups, the students were given a set of LUSU activity cards along with the equipment and, following the instructions on the cards, delivered roughly three lessons per group. This was followed by regrouping to discuss how they felt about the cards. It was a unanimous feeling of confidence in being able to deliver an inclusive activity guided by the clear and simple instructions.
The general feedback on the course was that they loved how bright and colourful the equipment was, how the information was delivered in a fun and informative way and how simple but easy and effective they thought the activities were to deliver. Everyone agreed that having the ideas for lessons set out on cards meant that they could “hit the ground running” when it came to working with the children and young adults they look after. They found it invaluable be able to have regular updates of training with new and exciting ideas.