I love watching videos of other music therapists in their sessions with clients. I gain so many new ideas for songs, interventions and methods of implementation.

I try to contribute by sharing my own videos:

Check out my Music Therapy in Action page to watch videos of me working with clients to address sensory integration, speech language and academic goals (just to name a few). All are shared with written permission from parents.

Today I’ll be starting a brand new videos series where I’ll be sharing ideas about how we can use music therapy interventions to address cognitive skills.

I’ll be sharing videos that demonstrate how we as music therapists can address cognitive skills like localization and attention, as well as auditory perception skills like listening and following directions.

I’ll also share videos on how we can address academic skills with our music therapy interventions. I’m excited!

In the first video of the series you’ll see a Musical Sensory Orientation Training (MSOT) intervention. MSOT is the Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT) term to describe the use of musical sounds for arousal orientation and to work on localization.

As you watch, take notice of the client’s responses to the music: sitting up, turning their heads, vocalizing, and moving, just to name a few.


The clarinet was my primary instrument of study in college (although that was ten years ago, and though I’ve tried to keep my skills up, they’re not quite the same as they were back then!)

I love using the clarinet in this setting for this purpose for a few main reasons:

  • It has a unique timbre – The clarinet sounds different than any of the other instruments I bring into my sessions, which immediately catches the attention of the children.
  • It’s versatile – I can play the clarinet in many different ways: loud and soft, and fast and slow. I can play runs, arpeggios and chromatic scales. I can play staccato and legato notes. The list goes on.
  • It’s mobile – I can easily walk around the room with it to address localization skills with my clients.
  • It sounds similar to the human voice – I think the clarinet sounds more similar to the human voice than any other instrument. If you listen in the video, you’ll hear the children making sounds. I love the interplay of the human voices and clarinet together as if in a duet.

Stay tuned next week when I share a video showing auditory perception training (APT) exercises to work on listening skills and direction following!