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Does your school offer music therapy and if so....

(16 Posts)
StarlightMcKenzie Mon 02-May-11 23:51:15

do the parents get charged £30 per session for it?

Many tia?

elphabadefiesgravity Tue 03-May-11 00:30:08

No. I havn't heard of any mainstream school offering it (and dh is a music teacher and I am a music graduate).

I guess it might be offered in a special school or it could be funded by thr NHS or a charity (Nordoff Robbins is a charity isn't it?) Or I guess that private sessions would be available.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 03-May-11 08:50:46

Well there is a music therapist in ds' school which is in a deprived area. I can't see them charging the other kids for music therapy, but my ds has been offered a place but being charged £30.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 03-May-11 08:55:55

BTW elpha, I am desperately trying to find some kind of music teaching for my son but everyone I ring (with the exception of quite crazy concert pianists that want to charge £60 an hour for a lesson in their studio on their Grande) refuses to teach ds.

He is 4yrs old with very high functioning autism and is already writing his own harmonies to tunes he hears or makes up on the keyboard.

They say he is too young and to sing nursery rhymes to him. Why don't they get it? Or are they deliberately and desperately trying to find a justification for not having to do something that they could be nervous about.

I don't understand why they don't even agree to a trial?

elphabadefiesgravity Tue 03-May-11 11:52:00

To be honest Starlight it would be outside the remit of many music teachers.

You get no training on special needs at college and for the majority of 4 year olds individual lessons would be inappropriate. Most teachers and colleaues I know start at around 7 years old.

Are there any Kodaly or Dalcroze based groups/teachers in your area. A olleaguewho has now sadly moved hom to Australia is a Dalcroze teacher and they have a very holistic approach. However that kind of specilaised teacher (it cost her thousands to trainand she has a postgrad too) won't come cheap. Most things are in groups.

Excuse my dodgy wireless missing letters out keyboard

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 03-May-11 15:53:03

The thing is elpha, there is no specialism required. I would sit in on the lessons (or a trained tutor that we have working with him) and make sure that he follows and understands the lesson. He has no behavioural issues at all and when he sees what is in it for him he is an outstanding student.

I would never have to get him to practise either. In fact, I'd probably use practise time as a reward for him doing other things, being 'allowed' to practise if he was good.

I just can't find anyone willing to give us a break, even on a trail basis.

I'll look up those terms, but I don't really want 'holistic' or 'specialist' - what I really want, is a straighforward normal music teacher who is keen to work with a bright and musically talented 4yr old, and allow the lesson to be accompanied by a 'specialist' iyswim.

elphabadefiesgravity Tue 03-May-11 21:46:20

Can he read yet Starlight. if he can then it might be worth mentioning that. Many teahcers like children to be reading well before beginning lessons unless they are using a non reading approach such as Kodaly (based on tonic sol fa) or Suzuki.

Thinking about it more a Suzuki teacher might be ideal.

I think the holistic approach can be very good for all musicians. Dalcroze and Kodaly are all about developing musicality alongside the technical skills for that particular instrument/voice.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 05-May-11 00:20:30

It's the musicality I am after. No way are his little fingers big enough to do much on the keyboard though he does have a good go.

He can't read yet but he could quickly if I taught him. I kind of assumed he would learn by ear first though. Is that not how they teach?

cat64 Thu 05-May-11 00:41:51

Message withdrawn

elphabadefiesgravity Thu 05-May-11 09:47:18

Agree, most teach by reading music, even from the very beginning apart from specialist methods like Suzuki.

That is why teachers are reluctant to take on very young children.

Also one to one lessons are hard going for a young child. They tend to learn better in small groups.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 05-May-11 10:00:20

Not when they have autism they don't grin

Thanks elpha and cat. Maybe I'll just try and find a music student or something to come and spend some time with ds.

I can read music myself so perhaps I'll teach him for a laff! I don't expect him to take more than a couple of weeks to get to a basic level if we do it every day.

LocalSchoolMum Fri 06-May-11 22:46:34

My son attends music therapy (he is on autistic spectrum) at his secondary school - it takes place in a small group. I think there are 4 students, the teacher/therapist and a support worker. We are very lucky that the school provides this free of charge to us and the other families.
However, locally we also have Lambeth Music Service which offers a Saturday music school in various locations within the London Borough of Lambeth. it is heavily subsidised and very inclusive - have you got anything like that where you live? Teachers at LMS are very good with children with all types of ability and disability. There are one to one lessons and group lessons on offer in this setting.

Catkins001 Tue 17-May-11 11:52:34

Hi Starlight
I am a mum of 2 young children and a music therapy student currently in my 2nd year of 3-year masters degree. Your son sounds amazing and his talent probably just needs nurturing at this stage. I could probably point you in the right direction of some people who could support you thinking about the options for him. Let me know if you want to pursue.

Catkins001 Tue 17-May-11 12:18:25

Starlight...I have done some more thinking....there is a very well known and talented autistic pianist, Derrick Paravicini - you can easily look him up on google. He was mentored by Adam Ockelford who is currently based at Roehampton University and has a special interest in music and special needs - his email address is available via the website:
I really hope this helps you.

PollyRocket Tue 05-Jul-11 15:58:11

Hi Starlight,

I am also a Music Therapy trainee and will be fully qualified in the next couple of months. I also teach piano, cello an saxophone privately so if you would like to talk about the possibility of piano lessons or private music therapy sessions then please feel free to get in touch.


rosar Wed 06-Jul-11 01:13:48

Starlight. ime 4 is plenty old enough to take individual piano lessons with any reasonable teacher, perhaps start with 30 mins. At that age (and some more years later) most good teachers will expect you to sit in and possibly take notes too.

His musicality will pull him along, finger etc size are not a barrier. It's hard to generalize, but I chose not to teach my children myself, because at 4 they were old enough to know the difference between business and personal, but too young to separate the roles in one person.

Unless you're committing to Suzuki or a similar approach, some find group lessons (rather than group music making) musically ineffective. It may be the English way, but seldom found elsewhere in the world.

I'm not convinced by music therapy either. We can all put together a decent sound, but to repeat and vary and develop those skills is another matter. A good teacher will always be part therapist, will work with the distractions, the physical barriers, the communication issues. I hope you find the right one soon.

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