Children with a disability or additional needs

Lorna Berry is a Qualified Hospital Play Specialist and worked with children in Hospital, specialising in children with head injuries using music and play to help children re learn lost skills such as speech and language.

Lorna is now the Early Years Music Specialist at The Hamlet and runs the ‘ Little Bees’ group on Mondays for children with a disability or additional needs.

Through playfulness children are encouraged to use percussion instruments and their own voices to explore the world of sound and to create a musical language of their own By responding musically Lorna supports and encourages children with potentially complex needs to express themselves and communicate through music.

Music and play decreases tension and anxiety and releases frustration in positive ways. Children who are experiencing trauma are supported sensitively by improvised music making which enhances positively personal well being and quality of life.

If you would like to discover more about the groups at ‘The Hamlet’ take a peep at the website http://thehamletcharity.org.uk/whats-on/news/posts/2016/singing-and-signing-with-little-bee-notes/

Lorna perceived every child as a unique individual to be nurtured and heard. Nurses frequently sought her involvement in care plans as she was a crucial creative strategist particularly in the recovery and rehabilitation process. She never fails to see the potential to achieve in every child. She hears every word a child speaks and reads non-verbal cues intuitively. She uses music to communicate and reassure children, but she is not afraid to allow silence to play it’s own role. Whether she is making puddles with tin foil, bringing nature to an unconscious child by putting fresh herbs on his bed, or planning half birthday parties for children who won’t see their full birthday, she is child and family focussed in the most refreshing way”

Jane Doherty
RGN RSCN, BSc (Hons) Nursing, BSc (Hons) Child Health

Lorna has a natural warmth and understanding of the needs of children in a hospital environment. Through play she was able to familiarise the child with strange apparatus and procedures, supporting the child, siblings and parents throughout their stay in hospital. The report Lorna had with long term patients was amazing, giving them time and patience especially when rehabilitating children after serious road traffic accidents allowing them time to be angry, helping them cope with their frustrations and she always knew when a gentle word and smile would give them encouragement to move on allowing them to express their feeling and emotions. She encouraged the children to be creative allowing them lots of messy times but quiet times were also special as Lorna told stories with amazing expression”

Mrs. Jackie Ellis
Senior Hospital Play Specialist
Wexham Park Hospital NHS Trust

Thank you so much for helping Lucy come out of her cocoon, it feels like a miracle. Even if it only lasts for one day it’s been worth seeing it”

Nel – Foster mother of Lucy

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