It’s been a while since I’ve been on the blog to write!

My family went on a Spring Break trip at the end of March (to St. Pete Beach and to see “real” mermaids at Weeki Wachee Springs!) and I’ve been playing catch up ever since we returned.

But, I am very happy to be back on the blog because I have lots of ideas that I’m excited to share.

Many of the school age children I work with have goals of improving listening skills or auditory perception skills. I target those skills in music therapy so they can work on improving their ability to listen, discriminate sounds, and tune out distractions in the classroom.

Here are some of my favorite ways to target listening and auditory perception skills:

  • During a singeable story activity, tell students: “When you hear me play the wind chimes, turn the page.”
  • During instrument playing activities, instruct students: “When you hear this (play a V7 chord arpeggio on guitar), switch instruments with the person next to you.”
  • Hide a variety of instruments from the student’s view and play instruments one at a time. Ask the students to identify the instruments they hear. WATCH A VIDEO CLIP HERE!
  • Hide instruments from the student’s view and play two instrument sounds back to back. Ask the students to tell you if those sounds were the same or different. WATCH A VIDEO CLIP HERE!
  • During a movement activity, tell the student: “When you hear the triangle, tip toe around the room; when you hear the maraca, shake your head.” (There are endless possibilities here – just think of what movement best matches the instrument sound).

I love working in these ideas throughout the entire session.

For example, if you have an instrument playing activity coming up, you can get students ready by hiding the instruments as I explain above, playing them one by one, and having students guess what instrument you’re playing. After that, you can pass out the instruments and proceed with the activity you have planned.

I like to sprinkle in these short listening and auditory perception activities whenever I can, even if those are not the primary goals for the students.

If you have more ideas in this area, please leave a comment below and share! I am always looking to expand my repertoire and I love when we can share ideas together.



If you’re looking for even more creative ideas for working with teens, school age clients or adults, I’d love for you to check out the E-Course I created, Tune In To Teens. It’s approved by CBMT for 5 continuing education credits and is packed with creative session ideas and strategies for working with teen clients: