One thing I hear very often from music therapists and educators who work with teens is that they have trouble finding musical experiences that are considered “cool” by their clients and students.

I can relate 100%.

I worked with children for so long that it was hard to crawl out of that headspace and create experiences that were appropriate and interesting for the coolest crew out there: teens.

It can be tricky, I know.

Today I’m going to share a simple tip to instantly boost the cool factor of your musical experiences: Set your song to a beat.

Sounds simple, so let me elaborate –

There are endless ways you can do this: you can set a beat on your keyboard or create one in GarageBand (your teen clients can even be part of this process!)

Many times, if I have a song that teaches an academic concept or social skill, I don’t even sing, I rap or chant to the beat.

The Noun Rap is a great example, and one of my favorites.

And, in the Virtual Music Therapy Session Planning Packs, I share a musical experience called Mini Raps.

Instead of writing a cheesy song about what my clients did on Spring Break, I turned it into a rap (or chant, if that feels more accessible to you!) and simply set it to a beat.

So, I hit the beat and rap: “Tell me, tell me what did you do? What did you do on Spring Break?”

Seems simple, but it instantly ups the cool factor and I constantly have clients telling me “That was so cool!” and “Can we do that again next week?”

When you hear those things, you know your clients are engaged and excited, and are therefore more likely to participate and work towards their clinical goals.

But you’ve gotta hook them first. And, that’s where beats come in!

If you are looking for more creative ways to engage your school-age and teens clients, you’ll be happy to know that the Tune In To Teens E-Course is opening for enrollment next week, May 10-14th!

I could not be more excited.

This course was one of my favorite ones to create and I am constantly hearing positive feedback from participants who have used the ideas over the years with success.

The course is pre-approved by CBMT for 5-15 continuing education credits, and there are three packages to choose from.

You can learn more and hop on the wait list here. You’ll get a rapping with teens freebie when you do!