Dis­abled stu­dents en­joy tech­nol­ogy

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By CAITLIN WAL­LACE

As tech­nol­ogy has ad­vanced, some of South Waikato’s dis­abled res­i­dents have made it their mis­sion to keep up with it.

Toko­roa’s Cre­ative Arts stu­dio hosts a group of dis­abled stu­dents for weekly tech­nol­ogy classes.

In their third year, they can now call them­selves tech­no­log­i­cally savvy.

The stu­dents also en­tered a video into to­day’s Hamil­ton Dis­abil­ity Film/ Arts Fes­ti­val known as Launched.

Last year’s arts fes­ti­val saw the group en­ter their ren­di­tion of Grease.

How­ever, this year will be a col­lab­o­ra­tion of all the work from through­out the year.

Tech­nol­ogy tu­tor Ratu Ratu said it was only a mat­ter of in­tro­duc­ing them to new equip­ment.

‘‘When we first started I taught them about how to use the soft­ware to tell a story,’’ he said.

Now with iPads, a video cam­era and a com­puter, Ratu said the cre­ative juices just flowed.

‘‘The key idea is to pro­vide the equip­ment and they do their own thing.’’

Barry De Lisle dis­puted the word ‘‘main­stream’’ and said the class was merely about learn­ing.

‘‘I said that’s some­thing that in­ter­ests me be­cause I don’t know much about tech­nol­ogy . . . I only knew about Face­book and my phone,’’ he said.

Through the pro­gramme De Lisle said he learnt how to edit videos.

Cre­ative Arts man­ager Rachael Camp­bell said the class helped them in all ar­eas of life.

‘‘ It im­proves their skills, they in­ter­act bet­ter with peo­ple . . . you’re re­ally see­ing what they want to do, what they want to see and what they want to film,’’ she said. Cre­ative Arts planned to ex­tend the pro­gramme.

Tech­nol­ogy savvy: Theresa Hemming, front, Ratu Ratu, Ash­lee Cortesi, Barry de Lisle and Melanie Gar­diner know their way around a com­puter thanks to the video class.

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