Twelve Bell Group Rings at The Children’s Center for Communication / Beverly School for the Deaf
Seven Bell Ringers from Hancock journeyed to Beverly to play two Twelve Bell concerts at The Children’s Center for Communication / Beverly School for the Deaf on Thursday, May 31st. The first concert was played to a packed room of over 40 students from kindergarten through high school along with 20 staff members, and contained music from both classical and folk repertoires. The second concert was geared for preschoolers, and included old favorites such as “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” and “Yankee Doodle”. The hearing impaired audiences relied on staff member Desiree Weems to translate Deb Holland’s program notes into ASL. After both concerts, the bell ringers showed each student how to ring the bells using either their hands or mallets. Many students loved feeling the vibrating bells – making the sound “real” to them. It was so gratifying to see the surprise and joy on their faces when they realized that the buzz they felt was coming from the rung bells. The staff later reported what a calming affect the bell music had on the children.
After the concerts the Hancock ringers were given a tour of the facility by fellow bell ringer and staff member Lynne Batty. The Beverly School for the Deaf is over 100 years old and is perched on a beautiful site overlooking a tidal marsh and downtown Beverly. The school has a new addition, and we were able to see all the terrific spaces that they have for assisting children with a variety of handicaps. The highlight of our tour was seeing a classroom in the new wing that was donated by an anonymous donor and dedicated to our own Lynne Batty for the terrific work that she has done with physical therapy at this school. Well done Lynne!
The 12 Bell group that visited The Children’s Center for Communication / Beverly School for the Deaf was thoroughly rewarded for their efforts by the enthusiastic reception that they received by the staff and students at the school. We cannot help but be impressed with the facilities and the dedication of the staff. Their job of reaching out to children who are multiply handicapped is not an easy one, but the rewards of seeing smiles on these children’s faces is certainly great. We were privileged to play music for this terrific group.