Hands-on workshops in schools are extremely popular with both students and teachers. The instructors from the Mugen Taiko Dojo are highly skilled players and experienced teachers, and have delivered workshops in every area of the UK, working with all different age ranges, abilities & needs.
Taiko drumming involves both rhythm & movement, is accessible to all, builds teamwork between players & is good for developing confidence and self esteem. In the workshop, the students are taken step-by-step through the basics of taiko drumming, learning a rhythm using the traditional verbal method, which allows taiko to be accessible to all.
Workshops are tailored to the age group of the students, and can also be adapted for all kinds of special needs groups. The ideal length of workshop is 2 hours, but shorter workshops can also be arranged. Each workshop can accommodate up to 30 students per session, with a set of 10 taiko drums used in rotation. All taiko drums and bachi drumsticks are provided.
A taiko workshop delivered by the Mugen Taiko Dojo:
1. Is inclusive, and accessible to all levels of ability
As anyone can make a sound out of a drum, it is accessible and inclusive, and yet a final performance can be achieved which is choreographed and well-polished. There is no need to read music, as all the rhythms are taught verbally.
2. Encourages teamwork between players
The very nature of taiko is that teamwork is necessary, and pupils must work co-operatively in order to create a piece of music as a whole co-ordinated team.
3. Builds confidence and self-esteem
Pupils who may not do well at traditional subjects, or who do not play any other musical instrument, find that taiko is instantly accessible, making a positive development in their self-esteem. In particular the workshops leading to a student performance give the pupils a huge sense of achievement.
4. Contributes to health and well-being
Taiko is drumming with the whole body, involving both movement & energy, and is very good exercise. The physicality of the art-form means that it serves as a stress-reliever, and improves physical and mental well-being.
5. Develops coordination
Taiko involves rhythm, choreographed movement, and co-ordinated "kakegoe" shouts, helping to develop brain-hand-eye coordination.
6. Contributes to literacy
We use verbal notation to teach rhythms, which aids students to relate words with sounds and movement.
7. Contributes to numeracy
Taiko contributes to numeracy through counting rhythms (in Japanese!)
8. Develops self-discipline and focus
Taiko is inherently a disciplined art-form, a cross between music and martial arts. Through taiko, the participants can also develop their concentration and focus, especially by working towards a final performance.
9. Widens cultural horizons
Every workshop begins with a short introduction to the traditions & cultural background to taiko, which provides a valuable insight into another culture. Learning taiko encourages students to be open to new thinking and ideas.
10. Is fun!
Pupils enjoy the workshop immensely, and the positive effects of the experience remain with them for a long time.