Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The Back to School Grind

It's almost time to go back to school!

Every year around this time, parents and students start their back to school shopping.  The new school calendar goes up on the fridge.  It's time for new school clothes and shoes.  Open house nights are just around the corner and mom and dad start creeping back the bedtimes as well.

For some students, it's an exciting time.  However, there are some students that really prefer the relaxed schedule of summer.  They thrive on all the attention given by mom and dad, grandma and other extended family members who are close to them.  They wish they could go back to that week of vacation where they got to see and do so many fun things.

For these students in particular, the back to school grind is challenging.  It takes awhile for them to get back into the swing of things.

What can you do to help these students?  I like to use music as a motivator.
I wrote the song, "It's Time to Work" precisely for this time of year (as well as anytime there is a long break from school).

You can sing this song, sign this song ( I sign the words "time" "to" and "work" when introducing this song to students).  You can also get the group up to dance to this song.  With older students, you can also have a discussion with them about work that is hard for them, frustration, how to handle those situations, etc..

The song is catchy, it's fun and hopefully will motivate a student or two to recognize it's time to work!

What are some of your go-to back to school motivating strategies?

Saturday, July 21, 2018

The Importance of Planning

Summer is one of my favorite seasons.  It is a time to de-stress, spend time with family and have time to yourself to do whatever you enjoy doing.  Summer is also a time when many of us school-based music therapists do a lot of planning. 

I find that planning ahead helps lessen my stress.  Instead of pulling all-nighters and being in a rush the morning of, I give myself time to think of creative ideas.  I take the time to research what other music therapists are doing and create my own ideas as well.  Over the years I have found that if I procrastinate with planning,  I feel more stressed and not as creative. 

If you're a school-based music therapist and you are trying to plan ahead for the upcoming school year, you may be interested in my e-book:  "The Back to School Batch". 

The Back to School Batch is a digitally downloadable songbook designed with the music therapist and special education teacher in mind.  It features 12 original songs that cover a variety of daily topics and routines that students learn in the classroom. 
With the purchase of the E-Book, you will receive sheet music for each song, ideas and suggestions for implementation for each song, as well as instrumental accompaniment tracks and mp3's of each song.
These songs are ideal for groups as well as one-on-one clients and are appropriate for students with a wide range of diagnoses.  This E-Book is guaranteed to help you teach More with Music!

To find out more and to purchase "The Back to School Batch", click here.