I recently participated in the Adams County Library’s FunFest.
Doesn’t the name FunFest just sound like a good time?
It really was.
FunFest is a free event hosted by the library system that celebrates the kick-off of their summer reading program. Community organizations and businesses host vendor booths with activities for children and information for parents.
My girls were excited about the milkshakes and balloon art, and I was excited to host my very first vendor booth so I could make connections with people in the community.
There’s something about being in Pennsylvania, and more specifically Gettysburg, that makes me want to dive in and be part of a community.
We’ve been here less than a year, and at the event I saw countless people I knew and recognized – librarians, families from my girls’ soccer teams, art therapists I’ve co-treated with.
This year’s theme was Oceans of Possibilities, so all the activities offered at vendor booths were ocean-themed.
I decided to have four activities that demonstrated how music therapy works (and boy was it hard to narrow those down!)
Here were the activities I offered:
Rainbow Hand Bells – Demonstrating how music therapy can improve cognition and academic skills.
Children were instructed to follow a color coded notation sheet and play the corresponding hand bell, and then Name The Tune (which was the ever popular “Baby Shark”). Then, they were encouraged to create their own song on the bells.
Goals: To improve sustained attention, improve color recognition, and increase executive function skills.
Q-Chord Playing & Singing – Demonstrating how music therapy can improve communication skills.
Children were instructed to follow a notation sheet and play the corresponding letters on the Q-chord.
Then, they were encouraged to sing (to the tune of “Wheels on the Bus”): The fish in the sea they swim, swim, swim; swim, swim, swim; swim, swim, swim. The fish in the sea they swim, swim, swim, all day long.
Goals: To increase receptive communication (direction following), increase expressive language, and improve articulation.
Multisensory Beach Basket – Demonstrating how music therapy can provide multisensory stimulation.
Children were instructed to pick up and play the instruments and items in the sensory basket. Items included: plush fish, spiky fish, sea shells, squirt bottle, bubbles, sun screen, and ocean drums.
Then, they were encouraged to sing (to the tune of “Shoo Fly”): What does the shell feel like? What does the shell feel like? What does the shell feel like? Is it rough or is it smooth?
Goals: To provide multisensory stimulation.
Drumming and Ocean Waves with the Parachute – Demonstrating how music therapy can improve motor skills.
Children were instructed to play the drum, then pick up the parachute and make waves as they sing: The ocean waves go up and down, up and down, up and down; the ocean waves go up and down, all day long.
Goals: To improve fine and gross motor skills, improve bilateral coordination, and increase strength and endurance.
I had a continuous stream of families visiting the booth, reading and learning about music therapy, and trying out all the instruments and activities.
What a wonderful way to introduce myself to the community and share about the benefits of music therapy!
If you are interested in music therapy services for your school or program, please reach out to me via our contact form or by email: Amy@WHmusictherapy.com