Inexpensive Props and Dual Purpose Furniture!

I get really excited about finding good deals and new ways to use things I already have! When we moved into our new office space we had to get a little creative because there isn’t a whole ton of room! This is especially true in our therapy room. We needed to have somewhere to put all of our instruments and props, but still leave enough room to conduct a therapy session. We purchased two large metal cabinets to run along the back wall of the room and house all of our equipment. They have worked splendidly! When we were putting everything away, I noticed that we had a bunch of little magnets and a light bulb instantly went on! Magnets & Metal Cabinets! OF COURSE! Perfect way to do picture scheduling, highlight important things, and give clients another way to manipulate materials! Perfect! A couple of my clients love helping me put up the picture cards and pointing out where we are in our schedule. This large amount of metal space allows us to get creative and be flexible! One Read More

Recent Songs with Added Resource

When using a song I’ve written within a session, I often like to add visuals or actions to the song to reinforce what we are working on.  One of the ways I add an interactive element is by using the iPad app Choice Board Creator. Within the app you can create custom activities that incorporate, pictures, words, and sounds.  I like to use this with animal songs as well as with two of my recent songs: Here’s how it works! When you select “Create Activity”  you will enter the desired name of the activity and will brought to a screen that looks like this: You can add as many boxes as you need, as well as adding multiple pages.   When adding content, you can add pictures, words, letters, etc. By tapping the music notes in the bottom left corner of each box you can add sounds or music.  These can be sounds you create or that you have downloaded. Here is what a finished page looks like for one of my songs.  I ask the client the questions then Read More

Apps I Love – For Teaching

For my birthday my family and fiance had my professional career in mind and bought me both an iPhone and an iPad.    I am loving them both and using them in my practice every day!! The iPad has been a great tool for helping reinforce many of the topics I am working on with my clients as well as using music based apps as a reward.   One of my favorite apps I’m using with my clients right now is My Note Games   My Note Games is perfect for helping review notes, working on ear training, and practicing specific scales and notes.   You can have multiple users so if you are using the app with several students they can each track their progress separately.  You can also use the app with a variety of instruments including piano, guitar, voice, recorder, as well as a few brass and woodwind instruments.   Games include playing written patterns on your instrument, playing what you hear, practicing songs, and writing what you hear.  The app awards you a gold, silver, or Read More

My Favorite Things Monday – My piano

Today, my allergies are really acting up! I feel gross, have almost no voice, and just wanted to stay in bed this morning.  One thing helped changed my negative outlook on the day into a positive one… my piano. I may not be a concert pianist or a beautiful solo performer, but I love to play and I enjoy teaching an instrument that people can play their whole lives. If I’m having a bad day, am in a foul mood, or just need a minute to unwind, there is nothing like sitting down at my piano and playing a tune. Somehow, just taking a minute to indulge in music making for myself turns my whole mood around. I am so thankful to have the gift of music in my life and to have the opportunity to share it with others.   I feel blessed to be able to say, “I love what I do.” My piano was a gift from a few of my family members.  It was my Aunt’s piano, before she passed.  Her husband and children wanted it Read More

Making Music

Being a music therapist means that I am making music quite often.  Wether it’s writing a song with a client, playing familiar music my clients get involved in, conducting a relaxation exercise, or teaching lessons, I am actively involved in music making several hours of every day. Sometimes, I forget that I need to make music for myself.  A large part of being a music therapist is being a musician.  For me, that means not only making music within a music therapy context, but being involved in music making in my community, growing my personal skill set,  and making music for myself!   I often forget that I am a part of the equation and that my musical interests matter.  I have to actively set aside to make music for personal fulfillment.  This past weekend I had the rare opportunity to do one of the things I love most… make music with my family! Both my mom (pictured far right) and my sister (far left) are incredible musicians and people.  They remind me every day that what I am doing Read More