Pupils and staff at a north-east school wowed onlookers with a flash mob.
Teacher Meg Connon, from Portlethen Primary, led staff and Primary 7 pupils in a demonstration of Makaton – a form of sign language that can be used by people with learning difficulties, people who may struggle with verbal communication and even those learning English for the first time.
The pupils chose the George Ezra song Shotgun for the occasion and the group spent eight weeks learning the tune to surprise younger pupils.
Makaton uses hand signals, similar to sign language, as well as vocal noises.
Meg, who teaches primary 1 and 2, said: “I have been driving the use of Makaton in the school for about two- and-a-half years now.
“We became an enhanced provision school in August and part of that means that all children, whatever their abilities, can communicate.
“As part of that, one of the things that we’ve been lacking is bringing awareness of Makaton to the wider school.
“So I just wanted to raise that awareness a little bit, as well as showing that the teachers can have a bit of fun while learning something new as well.”
Pupils are given the chance to choose a different subject to take on a Friday afternoon, one of which is the option to learn Makaton.
Meg said: “We think that the majority of the school has an understanding of Makaton, at least why it is used and we’re trying to embed it into the classroom as everyday practice now.”
The school hopes that using the system in class will show kids that use it they “have the right to communicate”.
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The primary 7 pupils were behind the song choice, opting for the Bristol singer’s tune due to it being in the charts at the time.
Meg hopes that the singer will see the youngsters’ interpretation of his hit.
She said: “I would absolutely love that. We even tagged him in the YouTube post. It was definitely an attempt to get his attention, that would be great.”
Meg also hoped that another famous face would get a look at the Makaton demonstration video.
Actor Rob Delaney hit the news last week after performing a bedtime story on BBC channel CBeebies entirely in Makaton.
Meg said: “He managed to get Makaton into the news last week.
“It just ended up being perfect timing, because this had been in the works for about eight weeks and it took a lot of preparation and time from the pupils and teachers.”
Meg hopes that the sign language can be used in schools across the north-east.
She said: “Makaton needs to be more widely used, and it needs to be more widely understood, so that people have that opportunity to communicate with the wider population.”