Let's all try this

30th October 1998 at 00:00
GROUPWORK WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES: Creative Drama. By Anna Chesner. Winslow Pounds 27.50

Do not be put off by the price of this excellent handbook. Written for those who work with people with learning difficulties, it is well worth the money.

After a short introduction, which answers in straightforward terms most of the questions one would want to ask before starting and briefly enumerates the potential benefits of creative drama, Anna Chesner embarks on a menu of activities positively brimming over with ideas. Voice work, sensory work, life skills and games are only some of thetopics covered.

Believing that a combination of "form" and "freedom" lies at the heart of the best creative drama, the author employs a simple five-part session designed for each activity, with participants moving from "arrivals and greetings" through to the core of the work and ending with "goodbyes and departures".

This book will help anyone planning drama sessions for young people with special educational needs. Packed with good sense and pretty welljargon-free, it has an A4 format suitable for photocopying and a practical spiral binding. "Let's try this. Join me" is the essence of the approach. I don't think those who choose to join Anna Chesner will be disappointed.

David Hornbrook is arts inspector for the London borough of Camden

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