“The Drum Fun Song” a music therapy drumming activity idea for kids

-Age: 3-10+
-Goal Area: To improve impulse control, waiting, turn taking,sharing,  and self expression.
-Objective: Students play then drum when 
-Materials: One large drum
-Method: Children sit around the drum with hands in their lap. (This can be a feat in itself!)  MT calls two students to play together while the other children create their own rhythms on their knees, hands, chests etc.)  When the verse is done, two more children can be chosen (by the teacher or the students whose turn is now over) and the song resumes. Therapist thanks both those who  played the drum and those who created their own body rhythms.
-Adaptations: Can be used with one child at a time, or with children sitting in their chairs (and positioning the drum between two children.)  Vary the beat for the age and abilities of your group. If the song is “too young” for your group, come up with a more popular song, vary the lyrics and use it that way!  
-Lyrics and concept by Jacqueline Bartoszek
Melody: Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain.
Words:
………D
Let’s gather round and play the Drum Fun Song.
…………………………………………………A7
Let’s gather round and play the Drum Fun Song.
.D………………D7………………….G…………….
When it’s not your turn, you clap or find a groovy beat to tap.
………D………………..A7………………….D
Let’s gather round and play the Drum Fun Song.
 
 
Please send in any activities or musical processes  that you use with children, adolescents or adults of all ages and abilities. These could be activities for use for kids, adolescents or adults that have autism, adhd, add, down’s / down syndrome, speech language delays, oral-motor issues, physical disabilities, mental health issues, conduct disorder, cerebral palsy and other issues that we human have to contend with.  I’m also interested in any activities for people dealing with health issues, dementia, Alzheimer’s, chemical dependency, other addictions, grief, cancer, pain management and any other life issue.  I have just installed a “spam” locator which means that I’ll actually get the mail as mail. Please email me at margie@musictherapytunes.com and put activity in the subject line. Give yourself (or the author/composer)  all the credit you want or remain anonymous. Thank you!! – Margie La Bella at music therapy tunes
 

“Drum Circle Game” and 3 variations: a music therapy activity idea for preschoolers, children, adolescents and adults

-Age:

-Goal Area: socialization, creativity, interaction, cooperation and impulse control.

-Objective: Drum holders will remain in their proper place and make their drums accessible to the player.  The drummer will go around to their choice of drums and create a drum solo or drum accompaniment.

-Materials: Shape drums (or other drums) and sticks as needed. Optional place markers for people to stand on.  Chairs may also be used if needed.

-Method: Drum holders are to stand in a circle, holding their drums out in front of them.  Therapist begins to play a supporting song to facilitate the group’s goals- be it on another drum, piano, or guitar.  The drummer then plays a solo or accompanying drum line on any and all of the drums in front of him or her.

-Adaptations: !) Place markers or chairs may be used, if needed, to define the appropriate area to situate drum holders.  2) Drum holders may move their drums slowly to the song and the drummer has to really watch and move to play along.  3) Also holders may walk in a slow sideways step in a circle around the drummer, who has to keep up with them in order to make his/her music. 4) I do this with groups of up to 12 children with only 6 drums. We make this work for us by having half the group do the activity as above and half the group dance to the music and “freeze” when we stop to change drummers.   Let me know what you can think of!

-Submitted by: Margie La Bella of music therapy tunes, thanks to Jamie.

Please send in any activities or musical processes  that you use with children, adolescents or adults of all ages and abilities. These could be activities for use for kids, adolescents or adults that have autism, adhd, add, down’s / down syndrome, speech language delays, oral-motor issues, physical disabilities, mental health issues, conduct disorder, cerebral palsy and other issues that we human have to contend with.  I’m also interested in any activities for people dealing with health issues, dementia, Alzheimer’s, chemical dependency, other addictions, grief, cancer, pain management and any other life issue.  I have just installed a “spam” locator which means that I’ll actually get the mail as mail. Please email me at margie@musictherapytunes.com and put activity in the subject line. Give yourself (or the author/composer)  all the credit you want or remain anonymous. Thank you!! – Margie La Bella at music therapy tunes

“Polar Bear Circle Song” a music therapy social interaction song for children

-Age: 3-6+
-Goal Area:  social and language (receptive and expressive)
-Objective:  Children will sing the words and act out the song lyrics
-Materials: kids, song, and a place to designate as the bear’s bed.
-Method: One child is chosen to be the bear and lies in the center of the circle. The children hold hands and walk calmly around the sleeping bear. Children touch the bear with one finger and tap/shake until the bear wakes up and growls fiercely. (When the possible commotion abates, a new bear is chosen and the song begins again.)
-Adaptations: We sometimes choose two bears with larger groups.  Sing about a different type of bear ie: big brown bear, panda bear, grizzley… Use as an instrumental song to help develop the concept of loud and soft.
-Submitted by: Margie La Bella of music therapy tunes.
-Source: Unknown. Please let me know!
-Melody: See the solfege below OR sing with the melody to “Oh, Christmas Tree.” (see below as well.)
Words and chords:

 C     ………………….. G  …………………..  C                  G7             C

A  polar  bear, a  polar  bear is sleeping in  his/her cave.
g   c   c    c       e  d  d    d          f     e   c       d   b          c

 

C                                F        G                           C 
Please be   very   quiet. Please be   very quiet.
e          e     e   g     f   f      d          d       d  f   e   e 

 

C                          Dm
If you wake him if you shake him (her)
c   c     c       e      d   d    d        f   

 

C             G     C
He gets very MAD!   GroooooOOOwwwl!
e    c       d   b   c    
 
Oh, Christmas tree chords. Play one beat per letter or “/” symbol.

 C/G  C//   Dm/G  C//

Repeat the above

C// F//  Dm// C/G
C//  A7//  Dm/G C//
*
C/G means to play two beats of C and one of G: not  a C chord with a G bass note.

“Old School Fill in the blanks Rap Song” music therapy activity for kids and adolescents

Here’s an old rap that I found in the back of the vaults of time. It’s old school but can certainly be used.  The therapist and/or the group can keep the beat (tap tap TAP) while the soloist reads, or a chosen friend or teacher raps the rhyme.  Add in solos and a group discussion. Of course kids can add their own words, within the confines of the facility/groups rules. This sort of thing should be addressed beforehand with the therapy team and administrators. The result can be recorded or the process videoed. Goals can include starting out with a new group, getting to know each other, cohesion and cooperation, academic skills, and more…..

 ______________, __________is my name.

Me and  ___________ are one and the same.
I like ___________it’s my favorite game.
I don’t like ___________it’s not the same.

 

__________________give me a head-ache.
Don’t want to ___________for goodnes sake.
I’d rather_________with my free time.
__________________feels just fine.

 

I like to _______when I’m mad.
But ________makes me sad.
_____spooks me.
_______oooks me.
And when I ________I feel glad.

 

I have ____people in my family.
There’s ___and then there’s me.
Everybody give me a cheer.
I did _______and I’m outta here. 
 
 
Please send in any activities or musical processes  that you use with children, adolescents or adults of all ages and abilities. These could be activities for use for kids, adolescents or adults that have autism, adhd, add, down’s / down syndrome, speech language delays, oral-motor issues, physical disabilities, mental health issues, conduct disorder, cerebral palsy and other issues that we human have to contend with.  I’m also interested in any activities for people dealing with health issues, dementia, Alzheimer’s, chemical dependency, other addictions, grief, cancer, pain management and any other life issue.  I have just installed a “spam” locator which means that I’ll actually get the mail as mail. Please email me at margie@musictherapytunes.com and put activity in the subject line. Give yourself (or the author/composer)  all the credit you want or remain anonymous. Thank you!! – Margie La Bella at music therapy tunes
 

“Sequencing Movement Picture Dance” activity lesson plan for music therapy for Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall season.

Goal: to stimulate attention span and language development

Objective: Students will select a card, describe the card, and imitate the action depicted in the card. Students will perform the action suggested by several pictures in a row creating a dance movement pattern to a meaningful song.

Materials:  a song (I find instrumental is better bc the children don’t get distracted by the words,) mp3 or cd player, pictures depicting actions.

Method: Therapist calls a child and asks him/her to select a picture. The child identifies the action depicted and comes up with a related movement. The therapists asks questions regarding the picture and helps the student answer (who is that, what are they doing, he is moving his____? Show me how you do that.)  The therapist asks several students to select a picture and then encourages the children to do each movement in sequence – creating a sort of dance.  Put on the music (I like instrumental) and move along.  Remember that less verbal students can show comprehension by pointing, gesturing, or moving.  There are many ways to answer a question.  If you need help, ask a Speech therapist or teacher to guide you.

Adaptations: Have the pictures correlate with a unit or topic the classroom teacher or other therapist are presenting.  I often do seasonally related movements.  Being that it’s nearly January 2013, pictures can include zipping a coat, pulling on boots, making snow angels, throwing snowballs, drinking hot cocoa……

How to Use this Site VIDEOS: Great Winter songs for preschool, kindergarten, early elementary aged kids / children

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to post this to let you know that I have some great videos that serve as great ideas for viewing, but also as activity ideas. The videos either have the chords and lyrics showing during the video or are in the comments section.  They can supplement a lesson or serve as a starting off point

Here is a video of “The Wolf Cub” song. The music is mysterious and beautifully moving and the topic deals with getting lost. But the ending is happy, so don’t worry.  My 4 year olds are able to follow along and even discuss the lyrics.  http://youtu.be/nLg2hipHkCw The next video shows how to move along to the video.  Really, the words suggest how to move, but a video is always helpful.  http://youtu.be/2TYx3vMcqtk

You’ll want to check out my other videos for your own amusement and for use as teaching tools for your kids/class. Below are the words, chords, and uses for the Wolf Cub song- which are found on this site under the Lyrics Pages. This song is from the Sing CD.

 
10.  THE WOLF CUB
 
The only way I could write out both the words and motions was to underline the words. If it is not underlined, then the words describe the related  motion. When you listen to the lyrics, it is easy to imagine the motions. I do have a video on my video page with the motions – if you care to reference it.    Chords are the same from verse to verse. 
 
Intro: Am//   Fmaj7//   G //   Am/ G
       Am                              C                                                   Motions:
The wolf cub wakes up and he opens his eyes.                       Start by pretending to sleep and wake.
Am                 C/G            D/F#   G
He gives a yawn and a shake.                                                             Give a good stretch and shake awake.
                  Dm                                 Dm/C
He looks up at the sun and the snow falling down                           Point up to the sun and motion like a
               BbMaj7                       Gsus-G                                                   fluttery snow flake.
and he follows a little snow flake.
                          Am   Cmaj9    BbMaj7   Fmaj7   Am    Cmaj9       Gsus-G
(Chorus) Singing Oooooo ooooh,   Oooooo   oooooh,         Oooo  ooooo   oooooooh
 He walks over a bridge and under the trees.      (Hold one arm out horizontally in front of   you. Walk the other hand on                                  
                                                                                         …………
                                                                                           the “bridge.”   Then, hold one arm up vertically with   fingers spread.
                                                                                           Walk the other hand under the “tree.”)
 
He climbs up a mountain so high.                                                ( Motion hands up and over your head.(
Then back down he slides, and he looks side to side.             (  Sweep them down again and look side to
                                                                                                                side.)
And he said “I am lost!” and he cries.                                             (Cover eyes and pretend to cry.)
                          Dm        Dm/C        Dm/B       Bbmaj7
(Bridge) He cries “where is my mother, my father, my brother                      Put hand up above the eyes
             Dm                   Dm/C      Gsus-G                                                              and pretend to search.                             
          and where could my sisters all be.
   Dm                Dm/C           Dm/B
I know what I’ll do.      I will open my mouth.                                                   Put index finger to head.
       Fmaj7             C     Gsus-g                                                                            Open mouth.
And howl out a wolf melody!”                                                                            Hooooowl!
 The wind it does whistle and the trees whisper “whoosh”                   ( Sway arms over head.)
and the birds sing their song to the sun.                                             Use thumb and index finger to imitate a bird  in song.
                                                                                                                          
And the cub hears his mother and sisters and brother.                     Hold hand to ear.
A wolf howling band has begun!                                                              Get ready to hooowl!
       Abmaj7        G6add2
Last howl: oooooooooooooooooh!
 Benefits: Children vocalize the “ooh” sound of the wolf.
  Children act out the lyrics, and demonstrate an understanding of the concepts involved; open,      shake, over, under, up, down, side, and families. The children attend well to the idea that the fox is lost and scared. They are relieved when her family is reunited. It’s a natural opportunity to talk about families, safety, worries and comforts.

“Yo Gabba Gabba Wiggle Song” music therapy / education action song for preschoolers, kindergarten, and elementary kids

-Age: 6-12 and younger
-Goal Area: motor skills, impulse control, motor planning, social, personal space, language, auditory skills
-Name of Activity: Stand Still (wiggle, wiggle, wiggle) from Yo Gabba Gabba
-Objective: Children express understanding of song’s concepts by moving to the directions (lyrics.)
-Materials: song “Stand Still”
-Method: Make sure everyone has room to move.
-Adaptations: Certainly the tempo, style, and lyrics can be changed to reflect needs and goals of your group.  Let the children think of ways to move.
-Submitted by: Margie La Bella of music therapy tunes.
-Melody: See “Stand Still” wiggle song for Music therapy on the video page. By Yo Gabba Gabba  http://www.musictherapytunes.com/wp/?page_id=20
Yo Gabba Gabba  Hold Still
 (Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle stop!)

 5 4 3 2 1

Verse:
D………E
Stand Still!
D
1. Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

D……………………………………………………….E
Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- STOP!    Stand still……
D
Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- GO!

D………………………………………………………..E
Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle- STOP!    Stand still……

 “Chorus”

C#m…………………………….E
Settle settle down. Settle down now.
………………….D………………………….A
We’re gonna get our wiggles out, get our wiggles out.
E
Time to settle down.
C#m………………………………E                               
Settle settle down. Settle down now.
D…………………………………………….A
We’re gonna get our wiggles out, get our wiggles out.
E
Time to play this game.   Stand still……

 2.   Jump, Jump, Jump – Go! (repeat 2x)

Jump, jump – STOP!    Stand still……
Jump, Jump, Jump – Go! (repeat 2x)
Jump, Jump, Jump – Stop! Stand still……
——————————————-
To chorus
——————————————–
3.  Dance, Dance, Dance- GO! (repeat 2x)
Dance, Dance, Dance- stop!
Dance, Dance, Dance- GO! (repeat 2x)
Dance, Dance, Dance- stop!

 

 

 

 

“Cinquain Poem” music therapy song writing activity for kids and adolescents

Age: 6 to 12 and older
Goal Area: emotional expression (verbal and non-verbal)
Name of Activity: Cinquain
Objective: Clients write and play a short sound poem
Materials: interesting instruments
Method:  Name your topic. Examples are: things we wish for, things we like, things we dislike, things we want…..  Teach the students what a cinquain is and help them to write one.  Students choose an instrument to represent their cinquain. They read/sing and accompany their poem. Discuss. 
Adaptations: The students play while the therapist reads.  
Submitted by: (optional name and email) Margie@musictherapytunes.com
A cinquain is a five line poem. The first line is one word. The next line consists of two words elaborating on line one.
The third line is three words long.  Fourth line is four words, and the fifth line is one word.

“Musical Zapper” social skills music therapy activity for kids

Age: 6-12 (all ages)
Goal Area: social skills (non verbal communication)
Name of Activity: Wink-out  or Zapper  (in the old days it was called musical murder.)
Objective: Kids conform with rules of game and try to figure out who is “the Zapper”
Materials: tone bells
Method: Therapist passes out bells to each student.  She puts one piece of paper for each student into a hat, writing the word “Zapper” on one piece of paper.  Everyone begins to play their bells. The zapper systematically begins to wink at group members to Zap them out.  When a player is zapped, he pretends to faint and falls over. The object of the game is for the students to guess the identity of the zapper.  The game repeats.
 Submitted by: (optional name and email)  Margie@musictherapytunes.com

“Sing with FEELING” emotional expression music therapy activity for preschoolers, school age children, and older

Age: 6-12 (I use it with my  preschoolers)
Goal Area: Emotional expression and language
Name of Activity: Singing with feeling
Objective: Kids name feelings and then act out bodily , facially, and vocally.
Materials: Any familiar kids song  (ABCs, We all live in a yellow submarine, Bingo- it’s up to you and/or the kids.) 
Method: Kids can pick a face or feeling and then sing the song while acting out the emotion
Adaptations: be sure to use songs appropriate to your purpose and age group. Who knows- this could start a good discussion with more verbal kids.
Submitted by: Margie Labella of music therapy tunes. 
This activity works well with younger kids too.  We don’t get to express certain emotions much in our culture-in a positive way. This activity  also tends to activate and focus a figity bunch of kids.