'Music Therapy in the Treatment of Social Isolation in Visually Impaired Children'

Music Therapy in the Treatment of Social Isolation in Visually Impaired Children

"Music therapy is an evolving discipline integrating psychotherapy with the use of music. The term therapy usually brings to mind a verbal model; early forms of therapy were called the "talking cure." A verbal model, however, is not appropriate foreveryone. Many people of all ages, and especially young children whose language skills are not yet formed, respond better to therapies that do not depend on words.

Music reaches the child beneath the level of words, providing a channel of communi­cation close to the child's own experience.

Although music therapists are musicians, they are also trained to formulate goals that use music to address various needs. For example, specific musical activities can give children practice in socializing and interacting with each other and in using lan­guage or developing certain motor skills. Music therapists work in conjunction with other therapists and teachers to form a treatment plan tailored to a child's specific needs that uses music as a resource to aid a child's rehabilitation and development.

Music can be a potent means of communication for helping a child whose social skills may be deficient to form relationships with others. Many education settings now use music therapy to help children develop these skills, and in these settings music therapy has become a standard part of a child's individualized education plan. Because children who are visually impaired face special challenges in their relationships with their peers, music therapy merits consideration by teachers who work with these children. [...]" (Journal Article Excerpt| CHARLES GOURGEY)

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