Music Motivates Children with Special Needs

Hey everyone, welcome back to the Rhythm Tree, my name is Ryan Judd, I'm a board certified music therapist, here to give you some great ideas on how to use music to help children with special needs. If you haven't signed up for my newsletter yet, sign up. I've got a link right below, I'm going to give you more great stuff, more great ideas and elaborate upon these video blog posts.

So, my client today, he's nonverbal has Angelman syndrome and we're working on giving him a choice in having him communicate by using pictures. So what I do is I take a couple of his preferred instruments, and I'll put them on a Velcro board, I've got a little Velcro behind all these. So you know I just take pictures of my instruments, laminate them put Velcro on and then we're ready to use them.

And I'll give him a choice and see what instrument he wants to play, so he can communicate without using words and with this one he chose the cabasa, as some of you know, one of my favorite instruments. And you know it just, it's giving him a voice, it's giving him a choice and it's really important if you're going to use this PECS system to really study it and get it right because it is a whole system with six stages and what I’m showing you today is just stage one really basic stuff going on. But there's so much to it, it's a very elaborate system, so if you're into using PECS and boardmaker and all that great stuff, really take some time to get some training in it to make sure that you're doing it right and you're following the progression in the right way.

The last thing I want to say is, you'll see with the cabasa that I'm moving it around and making him cross midlines, so taking his hand, crossing it across the midline of his body to play it. We're getting some of that shoulder rotation, upper torso rotation in there too as he's going for the cabasa so instruments can be great for motivating children to communicate whether they're verbal or nonverbal right? And for some of these great gross motor skills where they're needing to reach cross midline, twist, use shoulder stability to reach up high and play, I can go on and on. There's so much good stuff you can do with music and hey if you work with a child that loves music and some of these things are working out, see if there's a music therapist in your area because they will be able to take it to the next level with the training that we have and the tools that we have at our hands and I'll give you a link to find a music therapist in your area as well right below and I hope you tune in next week for another post from the Rhythm Tree.

Thanks so much, bye now.


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