I was afraid this would happen.  As much as I love the idea of creating a wonderful, resourceful blog packed with innovative approaches, original music and effective application for a variety of clientele, I find that, at the present, it is more important for me to simply be a music therapist.  I have started over with a completely new age group/demographic, requiring that I learn completely new music and techniques.  I have been learning and growing and enjoying the process.

But right now, I’m just not willing to give the time it would take to make this the really special project that I’d like it to be.  And so, for the present, my timeless little blog shall rest dormant.  I am impressed by those who seem able to spin many plates so effortlessly.  I can only handle a few.  However, my desire to creatively develop and display new ideas is alive as ever…and we shall see what comes!

Bend Down the Branches

Here is a short exercise involving movement to music and deep breathing.  It’s good for helping kids to settle and get ready to leave the group/session (you could have everyone stand in a circle), or for senior adults or anyone to stretch while remaining seated.  

I take a breath in each time I bring my arms up, and breath out slowly when I bring them down.  You can find the song, by Tom Waits, on For the Kids.

Music Therapy and Alzheimer’s

I have not forgotten you, little blog o’ mine (and any small or nonexistent number of readers at this point)!  It is ironic that I have chosen to call it ‘timeless,’ as that is what I find myself, having started a new job in August that I have chosen to devote much extra time to as I get into the groove, as well as being a newlywed.

But I have eeked out a little time to share something here that, again, is not my own.  However, I think it is such a helpful and succinct resource, and a population of music therapy clientele that I plan to blog about a lot!  I am now privileged to work with individuals with Alzheimer’s as a music and recreation therapist, and hope to soon have some original songs and ideas available here for you!  Thanks for sticking around.  And nice job again, Andrew Littlefield!

You You You You You!

Looking for a fun way to work on reading and vowel pronunciation? Here you go–to the tune of ‘You You You You You’ by The 6ths.

“Even though there are so many vowel sounds
I find myself falling in love with ‘oo’ (insert vowel sound)
I’ll read all the ‘oo’ words that I can think of
As long as you will sing them with me too…”

For the chorus, use flashcards like these so the client can read/sing four words.

For “oo,” you could use ‘true,’ ‘blue,’ ‘glue,’ and ‘hue,’ and you’d only have to flip the consonant sounds. Of course, the vowel sounds and words you choose to work on depend on the client.  If you want your client to work strictly on producing the vowel sounds (not reading), pictures are a good cue and substitute for word flashcards.  You could also have the client sing the word back to you without visuals.

A Zane-y Beginning

Hello, and welcome to Timeless Music Therapy!  This is not a blog for a private practice, center or program.  I simply want to begin blogging about my thoughts and ideas for music therapy interventions and practices and see where it leads!  I’m not an internet pro (though my husband is!) or a seasoned blogger, and I know next to nothing about online design.  But you’ve got to begin somewhere, right?

So, I’ve chosen to begin with this spark plug of a dude.

If this can’t get my blog started on the right foot, I don’t know what can.

I found Dan Zanes through this album at the library a few months ago and felt as refreshed as if I had just stepped from a log cabin soaked in Pine Sol onto a crisp patch of newly fallen snow.  Actually, it was better than that; it was like eating a tropical salad of fruits you had never known existed.

I still have much to experience from Dan Zanes & Friends, but from what I have heard, two things are clear:

1) This music is masterfully suited for every age, and is so wonderfully adaptable for music therapy objectives

2) This is music born from creativity, collaboration, integrity and ingenuity–in short, it is timeless.

A resource that you absolutely do not want to miss is the Songbook, where song samples, lyrics, and chords for many DZAF songs are given for banjo, guitar, mandolin, and uke!

So thank you DZAF, you colorful, delightful group of friends and musicians with a vision to bring people together through classic songs and original sounds–you make my job that much more exciting!