Traditional or Adapted Piano Lessons?

Several people express interest in traditional piano lessons, however, they are in fact requesting services offered in adapted piano lessons. The following table has been designed to concisely compare and contrast traditional and adapted piano lessons.  TRADITIONAL PIANO LESSONS ADAPTED PIANO LESSONS Typically taught by teachers with backgrounds in music. Typically taught by board-certified music therapists experienced in working with people who have special needs. Primary Goals:  Establishing a solid foundation in music theory, ear training, and performance. Primary Goals: …

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5 Lessons I Learned This School Year as a Music Therapist

Prepare Movement Songs. Group sessions– particularly with preschoolers and kindergartners– flow more smoothly when started with a movement song. I have even had requests for “dance” songs by my older students. Starting with a movement song meets the buzzing excitement of the students before gradually bringing the level down so that they may better focus on cognitive goals. As music therapists, we call this technique the iso-principle. A few of my favorite movement songs include: Move It, Move It! by Stephanie…

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It’s Okay Not to Be Okay

Worldwide, people are being impacted by Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in countless ways. People are postponing wedding ceremonies and proms, canceling birthday parties and graduations, and having to mourn the loss of loved ones over distance instead of in-person. These are just a few of the many current disappointments that thousands of people are grieving. Life is currently confusing and difficult.  With permission, I have recorded “It’s Okay Not to Be Okay,” (click link to view) written by Rachel Rambach.…

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Home-ready Music Instruments

Considering stay home stay safe orders, we as music therapists are having to be extra-creative in our approaches. Not only are we reformatting our implementation, but we are also having to reconsider how our clients can stay instrumentally active during our virtual sessions. In traditional (in-person) settings, music therapists provide the necessary music instruments for the length of each session. However, with Telehealth, we are virtually present– not physically present. Therefore, we are unable to easily provide music instruments for…

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In recognition of World Autism Awareness Day– April 2nd, I have 3 tips to share that I have found to be helpful when teaching piano students who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or ASD characteristics: Sing a hello and goodbye song in support of their preference for structure. Lesson content is likely to change week to week as the student progresses in learning. So, open and close their lesson with something familiar. Regardless of how their day is progressing, greeting…

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Can you guess how many keys are on a piano? I’ll give you a hint: Today is the 88th day of the year and it is National Piano Day! Yes, there are 88 keys on a piano. In honor of this special day, here are 8 ways that you can celebrate. Whether you are an experienced pianist, an aspiring pianist, or simply appreciate piano music, I’m sure that you will find at least one of the following ideas to be…

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This past fall, I attended a conference in which the speaker shared that she chooses and focuses on one word for each year. This caught my attention, especially since I had heard about this idea from a former internship supervisor. I was excited to hear about this concept from various areas of my life and knew I wanted to choose a word for myself for the upcoming year. After some time, thought and consideration, my word was revealed to me—…

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From Student’s Bench to Teacher’s Chair When I was younger and my piano teacher wanted to trade seats so that she could demonstrate a musical concept for me, I always thought that this was a big deal. I would get to sit in the “teacher’s chair” while she sat on the piano bench. Although, our roles did not change, there was a sense of honor and pride to get to sit in her spot– even if only for a couple…

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I love writing lists of all kinds! Shopping, to-do, music practice, dreams, and reading lists are just a few of the many lists that I make. They help me to keep my goals in mind and to stay on track. As an intern, I started 3 main lists that I kept easily accessible….  “Music Therapy Song Bank” As music therapists— especially as student and new therapists, we are always looking for new and appropriate songs to meet various goals. Near…

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A Suite Sound Music Center
PO Box 2074
Waxahachie, TX 75168