Around 20% of children have disabilities or developmental challenges and face barriers to participating in community activities like dancing. These barriers contribute to social isolation and poor physical, psychological and social outcomes.
Many amazing dance companies, dance schools and programs around Australia and internationally offer specialist and integrated dance programs, yet there is currently no comprehensive, evidenced-based inclusive dance resource for dance companies/schools, dance teachers, parents and children with disabilties and health professionals.
AllPlay Dance will build on Deakin’s AllPlay digital resource (allplay.org.au). AllPlay Footy, as a part of the AllPlay movement, has been funded by Moose Toys and the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) and developed in collaboration with the AFL. This resource enables children with disabilities to participate NAB AFL Auskick by providing resources, including inclusive strategies, which can be easily used by coaches, parents and children/young people with disabilities. These cover a range of concerns, including sensory and motor skills, anxiety, mobility, communication, safety, social relationships, attention, challenging behaviour and motivation, and use a variety of delivery approaches like animations, videos featuring AFL coaches and children with disabilities, and illustrated stories. AllPlay Footy’s resources were developed together with expert psychologists, paediatricians, educators, physiotherapists and child psychiatrists. AllPlay Dance will adopt this model and focus on changing teaching style, adapting genre/choreography, equipment used and the dancing environment to enable real inclusion.
Who we are
We are researchers from Deakin University and have been funded by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to create AllPlay Dance – an online space with the resources for dance schools, teachers, parents and kids with and without disabilities, as well as health professionals, to enable all children, regardless of ability, to access dance. We will also create a directory of inclusive dance schools in Australia. We have partnered with Ausdance NSW and Ausdance Victoria to create the inclusive resources needed so that all children can be included in dance.
How you can get involved
We are seeking input from the Australian dance community – dance organisations, dance companies and schools, dance teachers, and parents and kids with and without disabilities who are involved in dance. We want your views and opinions and are seeking consultants as we build AllPlay Dance over the next year.
If you are interested in contributing in some way, want to let us know about your inclusive dance program, or want to stay up to date with our dance journey, please register your details below.
Download AllPlay Dance Flyer (PDF 764kb)