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Friday Faves: Halloween Visuals

21 Oct

If you were to peek inside my instrument bag this week, you’d find some spooky sounding instruments, a few amazing manipulatives from the Target dollar area (seriously, go there RIGHT NOW and buy everything…cardboard pumpkins & slimy creatures galore!) and my 3 favorite free Halloween visuals below.

  1. Sing Me a Monster Cards from O For Tuna Orff. These are great for basic addition and subtraction, counting and using descriptive language. I like to use the melody suggested (Sol-Mi-Mi-Sol-Mi) and sing or chant, “Sing me a monster, tell me what you see. Sing me a monster, describe him/her to me!” I then prompt each kiddo to sing “I see…” and name one feature on their monster. It can be fun to pull them out of a paper bag with some of the aforementioned slimy Target creatures for extra monster ooky-ness.
  2. Halloween Composition Starters from Pianimation. This is a really helpful visual for songwriting experiences, drum chants or writing sound poems. Use this as a jumping off point for one song or create a verse from each starter line.
  3. {Free} SFS Candy Flashcards. Grab this free download I created for musical trick-or-treating and/or word rhythm drumming in sessions & adapted music lessons. We love hiding these around the clinic or writing out the corresponding rhythms as we say the name of each candy.


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#MusicTherapyBlogger Challenge: Waiting

18 May

This post is part of a 5 week #MusicTherapyBlogger challenge. Learn more and join the movement by visiting Serenade Designs!

Challenge #3: Share a quote that makes you think.

Screen Shot 2015-05-18 at 9.45.13 AMWaiting for a message. This is something I find myself doing every day. I wait for my kiddos to make connections during sessions. I wait for e-mails and phone calls. I wait at traffic lights. I wait for my coffee at Starbucks. I wait for the exact response I want to a musical cue. I wait to share reports at meetings.

Then, I think about the waiting that my clients endure.

Waiting for their bodies to listen.

Waiting for their brains and mouths to respond (knowing that the words that might come out might not be what they actually mean).

Waiting for the right form of communication.

Waiting for someone to see them as a real, thinking person.

I am inspired by autistic self-advocates like Emma Zurcher-Long of Emma’s Hope Book, who typed the beautiful words I chose to share today. So I wait for her voice, and the voices of her peers, to be accepted. I read her poetry, I think, and I share; then I encourage my clients and colleagues to do the same.

At the core of my values is a belief that we should presume competence in all people on the autism spectrum. So I wait for our society to embrace ALL forms of communication–verbal and nonverbal. I wait for people to understand that spoken words may be unreliable. I wait for doctors, therapists and teachers to accept new challenges and new approaches. I wait for the rest of the healthcare community to see autism as a movement difference, rather than a social one.

I wait for a client to learn to play a steady beat, to play the drums, to cross midline. 

I wait for a client to type one word, even if it takes 30 minutes.

I wait for a client to find the right iPad app, device or communication board, even it it takes months of trying.

I wait for a client to find and share their voice, even it it takes years.

I’m waiting for messages every day. And I’ll wait as long as it takes.

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