Thursday, 1 April 2010

It sounds very nice

But where are the conductors?

A mother blogs a visit –

Today we took Daniel and Matthew to the Dame Vera Lynn School for Parents attached to Ingford [sic, actually Ingfield] Manor School in Billingshurst is a school that utilises Conductive Education and is predominantly for children with cerebral palsy, although other neurological disabilities are also catered for. We had been recommended by a friend to see if there was anything the school could offer us for Daniel.

Read the rest of it. It is well written, interesting, to the point and easy to read, unlike some of those extraordinary rough-and-ready reports that poured from the pioneer-parents and disabled adults, and various professionals too, who first made their way to the Peto Institute in Buapest in the late nineteen eighties. So profuse were these that Gill Maguire created a classifation catagory for them, 'Visits', that filled four filing boxes of these often slender-reports.


Rough and ready, sometimes slender and, yes, often impassioned, these usually limited-circulation accounts were an important factor in spreading public understanding and enthusiasm for Conductive Education during that pivotal period (in addition of course to the vaste amount then appearing in the published media. Such reports differed in their focus and emphasis but in common to most was attention (awed attention in some instances) to the process of conduction and the conductors generating this.

New additions to the Visits category largely dried up in the nineties, once the process of internationalisation was under way. The media circus moved on and, though there were reports of visits to other conductive services since that early period, these were rare. In the twenty-first century, however, the bloggers have arrived and visits (and participations) are beginning to appear again in some numbers. And once more,these are pivotal times for Conductive Education.

Were I involved with compiling a 'virtual library' of Conductive Education I suspect that I would be thinking of a classification category called Visits, and were I suggesting to students what they might be thinking of for a dissertation topic I might be talking about a 'compare and contrast' topic.

Conduction and conductors

A further short quotation from this recent visit –
Her [the headteacher's] assistant got down on the floor and played with Daniel, engaging him in different games and seeing what he liked best, what he responded to and how he played and interacted.

I know nothing about the little boy whose visit was blogged here, nor indeed about the Dame Vera Lynn Centre, other than that from what is written it sounds a nice, welcoming place. I mention this mother's blog solely in terms of a, early-21C public record of a visit to a Conductive Education facility in the United Kingdom. Conduction and conductors have no primacy in the account – in fact, apart from in the introductory paragraph no con-words occur. Perhaps the 'assistant' was a conductor.

And, though it is good that the family was offered some follow-up advice and review, could it really be that the 'methods suggested are akin to ABA [applied behavioural analysis]'? Now there's conductive for you!

Reference and note

– (2010) Visit to the Dame Vera Lynn School for Parents today, Little Stars. The weblog of the mum of a special needs child, 31 March

Dame Vera Lynn Trust
Hol vagytok konduktorok

Pretty pictures, if a little revanchiste

Just the sad, sad words, in Hungarian and in English

No comments:

Post a Comment