Morris Minors promote traditional English group dancing, especially Morris dancing, in the schools and youth groups of Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire.
Who are we?
We are a small, not for profit, group of Morris enthusiasts, including both retired mainstream and SEN teachers, devoted to keeping English traditional group dance alive in Kingston Upon Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire. We are fully operational and have taken our Morris Dancing project into local schools and youth groups.
Our aim is to provide experiences which are sustainable by the school or youth group and benefit both staff and pupils/members. We will be able to arrange pre or post activity INSET for staff if this is requested.
One initial objective, which we maintained for the first eighteen months, was to offer our services free at the point of delivery. This remains a long term objective but in order to maintain our sustainability we regret we have had to introduce some fixed charges. None of our members receives a wage from our funds and all money is employed directly in funding, promoting and carrying out our activities.
The current charge to schools is £50 for a full day’s activities. This includes involvement by our members and use of all equipment. We are happy to negotiate payments with schools and organisations requiring shorter periods of activity. We are also happy to continue the principle of booking on a “fair weather” basis for schools and organisations without hall facilities.
There is no charge made for help and advice, loan of equipment, provision of speakers to children or staff Inset.
What will we provide for a typical day’s activity?
- A team of enthusiastic tutors (numbers negotiable), some of them former teachers, and at least one accomplished musician.
- Various Morris apparel including Tatter Jackets. We don’t provide hats for hygienic reasons but a simple hat design is featured in the “Resources” section of our website.
- Sticks, hankies, bells and bobbins (With younger children we use “sticks ” cut from plastic pipe as it will sound on striking but not cause injury)
What will we ask school or youth group to provide?
- The venue: Activities can take place outside in suitable weather. We would like access, if possible, to a hall or covered area in case of inclement weather. Classrooms are usually not suitable. Some of our dances may involve clashing sticks (plastic tube with younger children) on the floor. Please advise us in advance if this would be a problem so that we can arrange our programme accordingly.
- We know that many smaller rural schools do not have hall facilities and many youth groups may be in a similar position. If this is the case, we are happy to arrange bookings on a “fair weather” basis.
- The children: We suggest they are dressed as for a P.E. lesson although modern school uniform allows for sufficient free movement and we know that getting KS1 children changed can be a time consuming nightmare. Suitable foot wear is essential.
- The staff: It is expected that the school’s or group’s normal staff complement will remain present to supervise the children and to gain insight into the dance. We do not take responsibility for discipline or ensuring that the children maintain the safe practise outlined by the tutors.
- If schools wish, it can be useful, though not essential, for children to use percussion instruments at certain points. Talented instrumentalists may also wish to accompany the dancing.