Teaching Tips for an Inclusive Workshop

Posted: 2019-07-16 1:35:21 PM by WorkInCulture editor | with 4 comments

Prioritizing Access (Volunteers)
Inclusive Workshops (Teaching Tips)
 Support Providers
Leaders with Disabilities
 Trauma-Informed Practices
Meaningful Outreach


Written by Emily Gillespie

Introduction 
Disabled people are not just consumers of the arts and culture, but also producers. Disabled people are often excluded from professional spaces, and it is essential that teaching and training spaces are inclusive.  Community art organizations and hobby art classes are a vital part of community life.

Accessibility for workshops and classes goes beyond ensuring that buildings are accessible. Remember, many disabilities are not visible. A person’s ability to concentrate, pain levels, etc. may vary from week to week and shape participation.  Creating inclusive classrooms does not mean that you need to know everything about a particular disability; rather, you are able to address varied needs as part of a continued individual and group conversation.

Accessibility should not be framed as an add-on, but rather the foundation of a workshop or classroom, and is also part of what makes a strong arts facilitator and collective group experience. The following ideas can be applied to a single workshop, or an ongoing class.

A Few Reminders and Ideas for Facilitators

  • People are experts about their own needs and experiences.

  • Accessible classroom layout and seating, room for mobility devices, seating near service providers, etc.

  • Welcome support people and service animals.

  • Consider starting a workshop with an access check-in where folks can state any needs they have that day. Also create space for people to check in with you one on one, don’t force folks to talk about their disability. 

  • Use content warnings for topics that may be emotionally tiring or triggering.

  • Be aware that some people use technology and devices to accommodate their disabilities, such as computers and phones for note-taking.

  • Commit to breaks and end times, solid end times are especially important for people using accessible transit.

  • Be flexible with attendance and late entrances.

  • Make no assumptions about participants pre-existing knowledge, don’t skip directions.

  • Have information and directions in a variety of formats, for instance, can you re-word the instructions? Have written directions? Can you explain the directions to someone who isn’t aware of the terminology of the discipline?

  • Are teaching materials accessible? For instance, does a video have accurate subtitles?

  • Allow time for folks to speak and to think, don’t cut people off.

  • Are there a variety of ways to participate in the group? For instance, can a written exercise be done verbally? Can a dance be done from a sitting position? This is often about being creative and checking in about needs.
     

Conclusion 
Thinking about inclusive workshops and classrooms shapes, who has access to creative practices and artistic expression? Access should be imagined from a place of inclusion rather than framing accessibility needs as a checklist. How can the entire group work towards making a more accessible classroom? As a facilitator, it is helpful to reflect on, and challenge the pre-existing attitudes you have about disability.

How does inviting disability into the classroom expand the creative practice of the group and the ways that the art practice is conceptualized? How can classrooms be made accessible for disabled facilitators? Lastly, disabled people are often commended for showing-up in art spaces, how can you help them go beyond this and expand their art practice?


References 
Chandler, E. (2019). Introduction to cripping the arts in Canada. Canadian Journal of Disability Studies, 8 (1). http://cjds.uwaterloo.ca/index.php/cjds/article/view/468/709

Further Reading
https://www.disabilityintersectionalitysummit.com/places-to-start

https://disabilityvisibilityproject.com/2019/02/01/access-is-love

http://www.hilaryinwood.ca/pdfs/resources/art%20education/inclusive%20art%20ed.pdf


###


More Blogs from this Series

Prioritizing Access (Volunteers)
Inclusive Workshops (Teaching Tips)
 Support Providers
Leaders with Disabilities
 Trauma-Informed Practices
Meaningful Outreach



Emily Gillespie is Toronto based author and disability consultant, who enjoys using art to talk about disability. Emily recognizes that disabled people have different experiences and through her work focuses on people’s individual needs. 

Follow Emily on Facebook and Twitter | Follow Accessbility Advocacy Art on Facebook
 



Comments
Septic Burlington Pros
The great article tackles the stigma that surrounds art and disabled people. Anyone can appreciate art, even people with disabilities. We should always mind other people in everything we do
2021-04-05 8:01:38 AM
Photography DC
The plethora of information you are providing is almost scary! Please continue to enlighten our community with your resources!
2021-04-04 3:08:44 AM
Lives are changed through action
This article is truly a helping hand to many!
2021-04-04 3:06:24 AM
Deck Builders Rochester NY
We strive to do our best to improve the quality of your outdoor lifestyle.

We've got the knowledge, not only in regards to designing and building decks, but can also give you specific helpful guidance on the regular maintenance that your deck needs in order to last beautifully for many years.


This maintenance of your deck will ensure enjoyment in your continued use while engaging in your favorite outdoor activities with your family.

Rochester Deck Builders
(585) 440-3134
409 Linden St, Rochester NY 14609
2021-04-03 9:03:54 PM
 Security code

Recent posts

    No recent posts

Tags

#BigFeels accessibility administrative leadership administrator Announcement art artists arts Arts Job Arts Symposium Arts Workers ASL award becoming a leader board Board Member career Career Path changes classes Community Roundtables Conflict Management course COVID-19 Resources cripping the arts cultural Cultural Sector Cultural Strategy culture Culture Sector Culture Workers customer service Deaf development disability disability art diversity Earned Revenue Earned-Revenue emerging leaders employment entrepreneurs equity events feedback filters GERM Program grant Growing Creative Careers hiring hiring practices HR HR expert HR trends human Human Resources improvements in inclusion industries investing job job benefits job board Job Description Job Post Job Posting tips JobBoard jobs Labour Market Insight Project Leadership making improvements MakingItWork Media Release Membership Mental Health mentor mentors mentorship Milestones Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport mobile music NAN networking new features new website features nordicity online Ontario Ontario Cultural Sector Ontario Culture Strategy Ontario Government otf partnership person Product Development rebranding Recruitment Research resources responsive RobertJohnstonAward Roundtable salary salary and benefits Salary Range sector skill skills soft skills, Space Rental start Support survey TAF time training up updating website website update WIC team WIC update notice WIC website WICJobBoard Windsor work workinculture Workman Arts workshops