Simon Faulkner, author of the DRUMBEAT program, presents his new resource –a flexible approach for educators wishing to use music to engage young people in social and emotional learning. Based on the book Rhythm to Recovery, this workshop presents a range of fun and practical exercises for engaging students of all ages. Linked by analogy to reflective discussions this model has a proven evidence base in improving psycho-social wellbeing and school connection.
Influenced by Positive Psychology, and Act and Commitment Therapy which are strength based approaches, this model includes a strong focus on values, healthy relationships and learning to accept challenges or disappointments from the past and move forward. These exercises reduce the focus on language, and have proved popular with Aboriginal, immigrant and special needs groups.
The R2R approach is strongly informed by the latest neuro-science linking rhythmic activities to improvements in emotional regulation and memory retention. Educators have traditionally used rhythmic phrasing to embed learning concepts, and here social learning is embedded in the same way. Rhythmic exercises impact primal brain structures that mediate the stress response – with student stress at unprecedented levels this approach is a key strategy for professionals working to intervene in this area.

About Simon
Simon Faulkner is the founding director of ‘Rhythm2Recovery’, which specialises in delivering evidence-based rhythmic interventions for the health and education sectors. In 2005 Simon was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to study rhythm based interventions across North America. Simon authored the DRUMBEAT program and therapeutic computer game DRUMBEAT quest, and has contributed to numerous research articles and book chapters on rhythm based therapies.
A practicing counsellor, specialising in group work, Simon has worked with youth in schools & behavioural centres, trauma centres, refugee services for adults and children, juvenile detention centres & prisons, and both in-patient and out-patient mental health services. Simon has also worked with Aboriginal people in communities across Australia and North America.
Simon delivers training, presentations and workshops internationally and continues, to do sessional work. Simon is a father of three young men and a passionate advocate for the rights of young people.