Music Lessons For Special Needs

Music Therapist Shows how Musical Improvisation Benefits Children with Special Needs

Music with a Child with Autism  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 greatideas on how to use music to help children with special needs. If you haven't signedup for my newsletter yet, please do. I've got a link right below that you can clickon and I'll give you even more great ideas and resources in my biweekly newsletter.I just got back from Adam's Camp. And Adam's Camp is an amazing therapy camp for kids withspecial needs. They have one in Winter Park Colorado, they just opened one in Alaska,and the one I went to and worked at was on

Nantucket. And I had the younger group, sokids around age four to eight with special needs, and had an amazing experience. Andone of my campers, with autism, you know he had a lot of frustration and I think a lotof it was just because he needed to be heard. And but when he would come into music he justopened up and I think part of that was because I was listening and reflecting what he wassaying through song. And he did something really amazing and unique which was to startto vocally improvise a song while I improvised on the guitar and it just lead to this beautifulimprovisation, and I tried to put in some of the therapy ideas we were working on. Someof the interventions like asking for a break

or asking for help if he's feeling overwhelmedand it was just a really special moment, I'm so glad I captured it on tutorial.You'll also see there's one point where I have an extended period of wait time, I thinkthat's a great lesson for anyone, parents, therapists, educators, sometimes you reallyhave to give these kids wait time in order to process the information. So there was thewait time, there was reflecting what he was saying, and not trying to necessarily singover him but being really sensitive and when he would take a break, that's when I wouldtry to get in some of these therapeutic interventions that we're working on via song. And he justhad an amazing imagination, so we were singing

about bees and bugs and flies and flowersand it was quite amazing, so I'm so happy to share that with you today.The lessons learned, wait time. Huge for kids with special needs. Gotta give them that timeto process. And whether you're a musician or not, I think that concept of improvisation,and following a child's lead. Giving them the freedom to be creative and imaginative,giving them the space to do that, some unstructured play activity where you can follow their leadand you never know where it's going to lead to so I want you to be open to that and itcan be a great way to work on some of these goals.So I hope you enjoy this clip, I think it's

a fantastic one, and I'll see you in a couple of weeks, back at The Rhythm Tree.

Music Therapy for Autism How to use Music to Teach Social Skills

Hey, everyone! Welcome back to The RhythmTree. My name is Ryan Judd. I am a board certified music therapist here to give you some moregreat ideas on how to use music to help children with special needs. So, today I am going toshow you a social story that I created for one of my clients. Social stories are greatfor kids with Autism, Williams Syndrome and so many other special needs. When you wantto teach a child social skills, a social story should definitely be a part of your strategy.Social stories are great but what I do is take it to the next level by adding musicand then I make it even more captivating and engaging by using an iPad app, a free one,called Story Creator where you can put in

pictures, audio, tutorial… It's really cool.You will see what I mean in a second. This social story was to help one of my clientswith learning how to interact and talk with friends and peers. A couple of the words andjargon that I use in this social story are some of the concept he's working on at schoolwhich is ‘talk time', which basically means, you know, give your friends a chanceto talk to you – don't just dominate the conversation by talking the whole time. I'mreally about listening and asking questions as well as talking. ‘Bubble space' – yourpersonal space and not getting too close to someone's face, not touching people in inappropriateways when they don't want to be touched…

Things like that. It's a concept of ‘bubblespace' – whole body listening. Yes, we're listening with our ears but we're also listeningwith our eyes. We want to look at the person we're talking to and also have our bodysituated in front of them. You know, we're not squirming around and all that. Those are a couple of the concepts I incorporatedinto this social story. I hope you like it. Please sign up for mynewsletter if you haven't yet – I've got a link right below. Come check out mywebsite at therhythmtree . And, hey, if you're on YouTube checking this out, pleasegive me a thumbs up and leave a comment. I

love reading your comments. It keeps me going,it keeps me inspired to keep going with this labor of love tutorial blog that I have goingon here. Take care and I'll see you next time.Thank you! “When I'm at school, I will see my friendsand I will want to talk to them. It might be their turn, it might be mine,everyone gets talk time. When we talk, we have bubble space.We don't get too close to each other's face.I'll try to listen with my eyes and my ears. I'll try to use my whole body to listento my peers.�

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