Kildare and Wicklow ETB Newsletter Issue 11, PARTNERSHIPS - Page 54

This year’s performance will take place on Thursday 7th December.

Every December the students on the full time BTEC Higher National Diploma Dance course at the Bray Institute of Further Education(BIFE)undertake a project to bring dance into the local community and perform for the students at their local Marino Community Special School. Marino School Bray was established in 1956. Since then, the school has offered education to students with physical and multiple disabilities, including Autism. The school is now a special school with a community focus. It is a co-educational, multi-denominational day school for 3 to 18 year-old students. The dance students perform for the school children showcasing dances in some of the techniques they are training in Classical Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, Musical Theatre and Choreography. A highlight of the show is the finale which is choreographed to a popular Christmas song, culminating with Santa Claus arriving to visit the children. The dance students are involved in all aspects of the production and welcome the Marino School students into the performance area to dance with them at the end of the show. It is a highlight of the year for both BIFE and the Marino School.

Teaching and Learning in Piper’s Hill College

Continuing our journey with the Edison Project, a Teaching and Learning Club has been established in Piper’s Hill College which hosted its inaugural meeting in September. Thirty members of staff attended, representing a wide range of subject areas and expertise, but one thing everyone had in common was an enthusiasm and openness to trying and experimenting with new teaching and learning strategies. As we trial new methodologies each month, both students and teachers will share their insights and adapt these entrepreneurial strategies for their own classrooms.

Meanwhile, staff have continued to lead Edison Workshops this term, focusing in particular on creativity, innovation and design thinking. These active workshops give teachers the opportunity to experience entrepreneurial strategies as a learner and participant. They can then bring these methods back into their own classrooms.

In conjunction with our Teaching and Learning Club, eight members of staff are also involved in the TL21 programme. This is a workshop- based Continuing Professional Development programme for teachers and schools leaders that promotes innovative practice and professional learning communities with a focus on Action Research. We are now at the beginning of our two year journey and look forward to sharing best practice and collaborating with other schools in the locality.

This year has also seen the development of a Teaching and Learning Blog on our school website where teachers and students can record and discuss their ideas and experiences throughout the year. Follow our journey

Bringing Dance into our Community