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Music helps the individual and/or group situation develop goals such as:
~ Developing a sense of rhythm. I taught a deaf child to play the piano through colors and using the foot pedal for vibrations.
~ Improving speech and language. I helped a child who whispered by adding a kazoo to enhance his language.
~ Providing the child with an acceptable means for emotional release. Children love to make noise with rhythm instruments!
~ Improving the child’s self-confidence. I helped a teen blow the trumpet with many teeth missing. He began reading music notes and felt great about his achievements.
~ Training the child to follow simple directions. I had a group of special needs children learning a simple song called “La.”They were able to produce speech sounds they never had done before and performed on a stage.
~ Developing self-control. Teaching taking turns to children helped a group and allowed that group to let each other into the circle to do their dance steps.
~ Increasing retention and attention spans. I worked with autistic who sat for 10 seconds the first day at a piano and in six months enjoyed sitting for over 15 minutes playing colored music notes.
~ Encouraging the child to grow and use creativity and imagination. All children show what they have to offer through music. One child did shadow stories with a flashlight on the wall.
~ Correlating music with other subjects. That is, music teaches counting and connects with the teacher teaching numbers curriculum or music teaches science as songs are created for rain and sun.
~ Improving the child’s coordination of fine and gross motor control. Children love music and games which help build up their muscle tones.
~ Strengthening the child’s self-expression as music helps teach expressions. Laughing is good for the soul! It took a mini-taperecorder and recording the child’s laughter and then playing back their laughters at a faster speed to see their expressions of joy.
~ Developing the child’s interpersonal communication with others. I saw a child get up with cerebral palsy in all 4 extremes, turn around, hang onto the front of his wheelchair and wiggle to the music for the first time. He wanted to join his class and was elated at his accomplishment!

If you can add any more goals and examples, I would love to hear from you!

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