Music Therapy And learning Disabilities

To be a music therapist takes a lot of training but enjoying music making is and experience which everyone can try. Singing a song and playing along with instruments is an easy activity lots of people can share. So is finding meaningful music and dancing or moving to the beat. As facilitating music therapists we can choose active or gentle music to give variety. Choosing music to sing or listen to which matches the mood or quality of what is going on helps. For slow stretching movements or shared touch a smooth ballad might be best, for banging drums sing a faster louder song.

Having a learning disability means needing help and support at times. However the musical ability in each person is often easy to find and wonderful to see expressed.

The best music therapy technique as therapists is to be an OWL:

  • Observe

  • Wait

  • Listen

Then you we can choose what sort of mood or music might connect with the people we want to help engage and encourage to join in.

Another great technique is to choose generous instruments if you want to do some playing. That means instruments which are responsive to touch and make a good quality sound. Living With Harmony have a range of generous and responsive instruments which we like our group members to use of they want to.

Go with the beat or vocal pitch of the person we want to share music with. Adjusting our singing to match another’s shows we are listening to them. Being listened to is a great motivator to carry on joining in!

Always Living With Harmony music therapists aim do what is enjoyable and fun. Singing known songs or dancing together to drumming can be good to do. If the music isn't fun we don't worry and just let it go and try something else!