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How to Write Musical Social Stories

Hey everyone, welcome back to The Rhythm Tree, my name is Ryan Judd, I'm a board certified music therapist, and I've got a little tune for you.

I might want to walk up to a stranger and say hi

But before I do, I will try

To ask the adult who I'm with if it's ok

That's what I'll say

Is it ok

Alright, so that's just a little bit of a musical social story that I wrote for one of my clients with Williams syndrome. If you don't know much about Williams syndrome, May's a great month to learn because it's William's Syndrome Awareness month. I'll give you a link below for more information.

So people with Williams syndrome are amazing. They have a natural affinity for music, so obviously it makes sense to use music to teach them and to work on developmental and therapeutic goals. So my client as many people with Williams syndrome are, are so friendly, are so gregarious, and they tend to just go up to anyone to say hi. So obviously this can be an issue, especially with children walking up to strangers and being over friendly. So we came up with this social story, musical social story, about asking an adult if it's ok before we walk up to someone to say hi.

And I used a great app on the IPad, it's a free app, it's called story creator, and this is what I used to record my voice, the guitar, to write text, and to add pictures from my camera roll, you can go online and do a screenshot of images, there's lots of ways to put these stories together. And then what I love, it's going to be on my client's IPad, and he can review it throughout the day and especially before going to the supermarket or going to public areas, where this might be an issue.

So you can do the same thing. You can either take a traditional melody like Old McDonald and write your own words to it,   Write your own social story words, or you can even just take a traditional social story and chant it and add that rhythmic element that will draw a child in and have it be more engaging. So instead of making it this big musical thing, if you want to do something a little quicker and easier, you could do something like,

I might want to walk up to a stranger and say hi

But before I do,

I will try

So that's a way that, I think it really draws the child in and makes it more engaging. So musical social stories, check out the links I have below and please share this with anyone who might be interested and of course if you haven't signed up for my newsletter yet, please sign up. I'm going to give you even more great tips and resources on how to use music to help children with special needs. I'll put a link right below and I'll see you next time at The Rhythm Tree.

Take Care

When I leave my home

I won't be alone

But I have to follow rules

Around people I know

People I don't know

Have never met

Adult strangers ...

There's strangers at school

At the store

Everywhere I go

I see more

Might want to go up to a stranger and say hi

But before I do, I will try

To ask the adult who I'm with if it's ok

That's what I'll say, is it ok

This will keep me happy

... safe

Happy and safe every day hooray

Happy and safe every day hooray

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