music therapy for autism, special needs

Music Therapy Groups for Special Needs Children in Butte

The Music Therapy Groups for Special Needs Children have been scheduled for the rest of 2018. The groups are scheduled for: October 13, November 10 and December 8th. Although it would be great to have your child attend all groups, it is not required. Registration is required. Please call Angie at 971-221-7144 or email angie@montanamusictherapy.com to register.

What happens during a music therapy group?

What: These groups are designed to provide a supportive environment that addresses goals such as improved social skills, increased expressive language, and enhanced motor planning. Each session will include opportunities to connect with others through music using singing, dancing, instrument playing, and musical games.

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When: The 2nd Saturday of every month (11:15-noon)

Dates for the rest of 2018: October 13, November 10 and December 8th

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Where: 1252 Harrison Ave., Butte, MT 59701

These groups are held in an upstairs room without an elevator. Please let us know if you need support in getting someone up the stairs.


To get a better idea of what these music therapy sessions look like, we encourage you to watch some of the videos we’ve created on our Big Sky Music Therapy youtube page.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL2ZvBHCBSZ0RSW6MMYxrrcoCDW_TCHOxB

For further information email Angie at angie@montanamusictherapy.com

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global music therapy project, music, music lessons, music therapy, music therapy for autism, music therapy group, music therapy groups, neurologic music therapy, singing, special needs

December 2015 Events at MTSP + The Global Music Therapy Project Trailer

Happy holidays, families!

We hope that you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving full of love and laughter.
Please mark your calendars for these December events:

Bi-monthly Music Therapy Group
Saturday, December 5, 11:10am (The Littles) & 12:10pm (The Biggles)

Free monthly Music Therapy Group
Saturday, December 12, 1:10-1:55pm

Bi-monthly Music Therapy Group
Saturday, December 19, 11:10am (The Littles) & 12:10pm (The Biggles)

Winter Recital
December 22, 6:30pm at Classic Pianos
3003 SE Milwaukie Ave., Portland 97202
If you haven’t, please RSVP here. If you’re having any trouble with this link, you’re also welcome to simply send an email to Angie instead! We have plenty of room for friends and family at this recital! There will be a reception after the recital and we’re asking each family to bring a little tray of goodies for this reception.

Our Global Music Therapy Project trailer is finally complete. I wanted to share in order to help you understand the project a little better and introduce you to some of the wonderful people we’ve been working with in South America and Africa. Thank you for your patience, flexibility, and support surrounding this project.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHtzwKmnoH0

Music Therapy Services of Portland humbly thanks you for trusting us with your family members and supporting all of our music therapy endeavors. As the weather gets colder, we want to encourage everyone to stay safe on the roads and check in if you’re concerned about road conditions. Kate is to the North of our studio and Angie is to the South and our families are all over the map. We’d rather reschedule than risk hazardous road conditions, so send us a text or call if things aren’t looking safe on your end!

P.S. In case we haven’t told you recently, we love photos and videos of your kids. If you ever have the spontaneous urge to share with us, your messages warm our hearts!

Warmly,
Angie & Kate

autism, music therapy, music therapy group

How sensory integration plays into music therapy groups

At Music Therapy Services of Portland, we love facilitating small groups. The art of creating an ideal music therapy group for children diagnosed on the autism spectrum is a challenge that involves the help of parents, caretakers, and allied health professionals. One of the most important elements that we take into consideration is sensory processing. Linn Wakeford’s chapter in Early Childhood Music Therapy and Autism Spectrum Disorders explains that researchers have categorized sensory processing into three primary patterns:

  • Hypo-responsiveness (under responsiveness)
  • Hyper-responsiveness (overly responsive)
  • Sensory seeking behaviors

Many children are a mix of some hyper-responsive patterns and other hypo-responsive patterns. The sensory systems include: auditory, visual, olfactory, tactile, gustatory, vestibular, and proprioceptive.

As a music therapist, being aware of the sensory systems of each individual in a group is critical and impacts the instruments and interventions I utilize.  So how can parents help their child end up in the most appropriate music therapy group? Consider how your child responds to each of these musical elements:

  • Intensity – Does she prefer loud or soft sounds?
  • Frequency – Does he want the same sound over and over again or new sounds?
  • Duration – How long does she enjoy the sensation?
  • Rhythm – Does he enjoy rhythmic predictability or more variation and unpredictability?
  • Novelty – Does she respond aversively to change and newness?
  • Complexity – Does he enjoy multiple sensations within music like an orchestra or minimal instruments like only voice or guitar?

Many sensory processing theories incorporate adaptations and modifications that are much easier to address in a one-to-one setting. The children who are able to receive both individual and group music therapy sessions are certainly at an advantage because we are able to learn and address their sensory needs better. But even new children can succeed within a group when communication with parents and caretakers is incorporated. Our ultimate objective is to minimize the influence of sensory processing differences at all times.

Share what you notice about your child’s response to music by calling, sending an email, or completing our survey. If you’re a returning family, we invite you to resubmit our survey or provide us with any additional information you’ve observed or received from allied health professionals. Help us make your child’s music therapy group experience as beneficial as possible!

For those of you facilitating groups or individual sessions, consider the following:

  • The lighting
  • The temperature
  • Noises such as cars, the air conditioner, people talking
  • Do the kids need movement, deep pressure, or a familiar songs at a slow and steady tempo?
  • Can you have the child who is up and moving around be an assistant while the child under the blanket plays with the cabasa?

If a child gets up, walks to the corner, and comes back, they may be practicing self regulation. If they’re hiding under a blanket, they may be coping with their sensory needs. Ask yourself whether these actions are important or if you can work around them and possibly address these issues down the road. Otherwise, is there a way to meet these different needs within the various interventions of your group session?  We will address these questions more in an upcoming blog explaining the iso-principal approach during music therapy sessions.

Meanwhile, here are two additional video resources – the first is more for parents and the second is one you can watch with your child:

A detailed video by Chirp on sensory processing needs and strategies.

A Child’s View of Sensory Processing

Angie Kopshy, MM, MT-BC
Angie Kopshy, MM, MT-BC

Music Therapy Services of Portland is directed by board-certified music therapist, Angie Kopshy. Upon completion of her Master’s in Music from Boise State University, Angie returned to Portland to study music therapy at Marylhurst University. Music Therapy Services of Portland specializes on working with children on the autism spectrum. Angie is also a singer/songwriter with the band, Stoneface Honey.