This past week, I was on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts, atAdam’s Camp New England. For the past three years, I have been one of the music therapists for Adam’s Camp. Every year, this camp has pushed me to the limits and taught me new skills, while creating incredible bonds with children, their families, and other therapists along the way.
To say I love this camp would be a serious understatement! I look forward to my weeks at Adam’s Camp more than almost anything all year.
Summer is usually a pretty laid-back time at my private practice, Music Therapy Connections. However, summer 2019 is a MAJOR exception to this rule, as it has been quite the whirlwind so far.
At the end of May, we welcomed a new music therapy intern, Emma, and then just a couple weeks later, we welcomed a new full-time music therapist, Molly. Then, one week after that, our long-time music therapist, Alisabeth, left us to have her baby.
So as you can imagine, there has been an overload of new client intake, new contracts beginning, and current clients being reassigned to different music therapists. Thankfully, we are at tail end of this shuffle, and now the real work begins.
One of my all-time favorite instruments in my music therapy arsenal is my collection of cabasas! I love them so much, and use them frequently in my music therapy sessions and music classes — probably every day.
When I pass out cabasas, people are often unsure how to use them and typically require some guidance. Because of this, the cabasa is a great instrument for children to explore, be creative, and practicing mimicking.
It’s official: I have a 6-year-old! When Parker turned 5 (remember his epic Batman birthday bash!?) it felt like he was entering the “big kid” years, and now it seems that he is firmly in that category.
After two years of hosting big backyard birthday parties, this mama was ready to keep it much more low-key. So we rented out our local gymnastics center, where Parker and 18 of his closest friends could run wild and use up all their summer energy.
As I was scrolling through Listen & Learn Music in search of a movement song, I stumbled upon “Move Your Body Along” — a true hidden gem in the L&L catalog.
I have to admit, I listen to so many songs because of my job, that sometimes I forget them. Other times, I have the best of intentions, set out to learn a song and incorporate it into my repertoire, and just never do it. THIS is one of those songs!
Although summer doesn’t officially begin for a few more days, it certainly feels like it! I’ve been putting my favorite summer-themed songs to use for the last few weeks, and will continue to do so when it comes to my July session plan.
At my private practice, we are facilitating music groups and music therapy in several summer camp sessions and other non-traditional settings, so I’m looking forward to implementing this session plan in ways that I don’t typically have the opportunity to during the school year.
Children just love books; it is a simple fact I have come to learn over the years. Whether it’s looking at the pictures, having a chance to turn the page, or snuggling in an adult’s lap, many children are highly motivated and engaged when it’s time to read a book.
I was always hesitant to incorporate books into my music therapy sessions and music classes, but I noticed that if I arrived a few minutes early or stayed a little later, many of my clients and students would ask if I would read them a book. For young children, I truly think it is a way for them to express that they want to share an experience with you and often, they are telling you that you are important to them.
The end of May and beginning of June is a busy time for everyone, but it’s especially jam-packed for my family thanks to LOTS of birthdays! This week, we’re celebrating mine (June 5) AND my son’s (June 8).
For the last few years, I’ve put together a special Listen & Learn offer during my birthday week, and this year is no exception. This one might actually be my favorite yet, because it will come in handy alllll year long.
Here in New Hampshire, school is still in session for a few more weeks. Many of my clients and students are preparing to move on to new classrooms, new schools, or are just getting ready for summer break, and often, a break from music therapy or music classes.
For the last session or class of the school year, I like to bring out all of the kiddos’ favorite songs we’ve done, and sometimes, children will even make requests for what songs they’d like to hear.
Believe it or not, we are already over a week into summer break at my house! Parker’s last day of kindergarten was May 22, and we’ve been filling our days with summer fun ever since.
Luckily, my husband Zach and I were able to enjoy a week of rest and relaxation in Hawaii (check out my story highlights on Instagram) right before the end-of-school madness set it, which was great because life has been moving like a freight train from the moment we returned home.
Welcome! I’m Rachel Rambach, board-certified music therapist and creator of Listen & Learn Music — educational songs and musical materials for children. I love sharing my work with you, along with my behind-the-scenes creative process, adventures in business ownership, and life as a mom of two little ones.
Next month’s music therapy sessions, early childhood groups, or classroom music…planned for you in advance.
Click the image below for this free resource and song collection!