DrumBus call HRECUtah.org 801.521.4283
20 kids (grades 2-12) per 30 min session on the bus
WHY BULLY PREVENTION? Bullying causes school absenteeism, substance abuse, depression and suicide.
WHY THE DRUMBUS? The DrumBus arrives ready for use with authentic drums and benches for all sizes.
WHY DRUMMING? Drumming develops listening skills, engages people, promotes relaxation, self-confidence and feelings of well-being. It’s where the right and left brain learn how to preven tbullying through story telling, discussion and rhythm.
In October of 2010, children in West Valley after-school programs kept a drum beat while experiencing what it feels like to be bullied, bully and be a bystander. Experiences most have had one time or another with an estimated 1.6 million U.S. children (grades 6 -10) being bullied at least once a week.
In a group-facilitated drum circle, scenarios played out that empowered the bystanders and created empathy for the bullied, as well as insight into why someone might bully. “Our plan is for these kids to have fun, but also a memorable and really emotionally impactful learning experience,” says Susan Klinker, Program Director, West Valley Cultural Celebration Center.
“Their hearts will be open to being more aware of how their own actions and the actions of their peers have the potential to really hurt or help people,” adds Klinker. This is notable, since research shows that children are most likely to get in trouble after school between the 3-6 pm when little supervision is available. A study by The National Institute of Child Health found that both the bully and the bullied are at greater risk of loneliness, lack of success in school and becoming involved in drugs, alcohol and tobacco.
“We’ve designed a program that is interactive and novel in its approach in teaching kids about bullying by using drumming to engage them,” explains Carla Kelley, Director of the Utah Human Rights Education Center, who has been addressing the issues of bullying since 1999 (www.hrecutah.org). “Plus it is a fun way and a safe environment to get kids to explore this issue and what they can do about it.”
Group drumming is a growing phenomenon for its ability to engage most ages and transcend traditional barriers (e.g. language, peer-group affiliation, physical/developmental abilities). It blends both group collaboration and individual self-expression in a non-threatening environment. A growing cache of research bolsters the therapeutic effects of drumming (www.drumbus.com, “Why Drum” link) ; for school children this includes improving concentration, coordination, and listening skills.
“For kids and adults, it’s another means of self expression that doesn’t rely on words but feel—it levels the playing field and is accessible to everybody,” adds Mike Liston, founder of Rhythms of Life who is partnering with HREC in creating this program. Liston has been facilitating drum circles since 2002 for schools, rehab centers, community centers, and businesses.
“I just wanted to tell you how much we enjoyed having you at our center today!!! The children have been saying the mantra throughout the afternoon. The staff really enjoyed the activity and said that all of the children seemed to embrace the ideas. You have a wonderful program and I hope we can have you come to our center again in the future.”