Music certainly lifts blue spirits and is therefore a wonderful tool for therapy. Music therapy involves singing, listening, moving, playing, and engaging in creative activities like art. Music therapy activities help children develop self-awareness, confidence, and social behavior. Here are 20 melodic and marvelous music therapy activities to support children’s social and emotional well-being.
1. Become a Songwriter
Music therapy activities like songwriting benefit the activation of the brain associated with emotion processing and regulation. When children try to write songs, they will think about words and feelings. These songwriting templates can help with the writing process to unleash every child’s inner songwriter.
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2. Songwriting Templates
Some students require scaffolding when engaging in music therapy activities like songwriting. This wonderful site has a collection of templates for different themes. The templates are free and provide students with an opportunity to re-write existing songs or fill in templates to create their original songs.
Learn More: Aspire Music Therapy
Drums may be loud but they are certainly fun for music therapy activities. Kids can communicate without words by simply drumming their emotions or repeating the beat pattern created by the teacher or other students. Drums are wonderful communicative tools that allow children to express themselves musically and creatively.
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4. Let’s Make a Drum
Music therapy activities involving drums are fantastic ways to get students to communicate emotions with music. What does happy sound like? Let your students create the beat with their DIY drum! Empty cans of different sizes and rubber balloons are all you need to create these fun instruments.
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5. Personal Soundtrack
Music therapy activities use songs to improve mood and self-expression. Here’s a clever way to have older kids think about song choices and their daily routines. The free templates are great for writing their personal playlist for each routine of the day like waking up or getting ready for school.
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6. My Mix Tape
Songs are used in music therapy to recall memories or make new ones. This visually appealing template helps students associate music with a particular event for reflection and discussion.
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7. Lyric Discussion
Students have favorite songs but have they ever taken the time to analyze the song’s meaning? Song lyric discussion in music therapy discusses emotions and provides an opportunity for self-expression. This resource provides effective question stems to use during lyric discussions.
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8. 4 Easy Steps for Song Lyric Discussion
Song lyric therapy helps with expressing emotions and communicating mood. If you aren’t sure how to incorporate lyric discussion with your students, this resource will walk you through 4 easy steps to using song lyrics in music therapy activities.
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9. Music Therapy Activities Without Music
Chanting, naming a tune, and showing off dance moves are three creative ways to engage students in music therapy activities without a lot of music. These activities involve collaboration, socializing, and of course laughter!
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10. Drum Circle
Music therapy activities that incorporate drums help students reduce stress and improve their focus. The teacher will be the conductor and must instruct students when to drum.
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11. 7 Instruments for Music Therapy Activities
Music therapy activities are effective in reducing anxiety and providing emotional support. This resource provides the top 7 instruments teachers can bring into the classroom. Make music a creative part of a lesson by allowing students to choose an instrument and create a harmonious melody before or after a lesson.
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12. DIY Music Instruments
Kids do not need to know how to read music or play an instrument to actively participate in music therapy activities. They can make their own instruments with materials easily found in the home such as cans and paper plates. The process of making instruments is calming and motivational.
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13. Creative Castanets
Playing instruments during music therapy activities helps with self-expression. This tutorial shows students how to make DIY castanets. Students will express themselves musically by clicking their castanets.
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14. Music and Movement
Get students activated with music therapy activities that promote exercise and movement. Students will think they are having fun when they row, row, row their boat but teachers are cleverly getting them to improve their mental and physical well-being.
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15. 30 Music Therapy Songs for Early Childhood
Choosing the right song for younger children participating in music therapy activities is key to achieving learning goals. This website offers 30 songs for music therapy activities for early childhood to improve motor movement and cognitive functioning during playtime.
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16. Drawing to Music
Combining art with music therapy activities increases cognitive functioning and critical thinking skills. Young children will listen to music while they artistically depict the mood they are feeling. Every scribble and line is drawn from the child’s emotional response to music.
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17. Music & Mindful Art
A simple but impactful music therapy activity is having students listen to music and paint or draw while they listen. This is a soothing activity to help students activate their imaginations. Students will use pictures instead of words to depict the lyrics and sounds.
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18. Community Mandala
Incorporating creative arts into music therapy enhances emotional expression. Students will participate in a drum circle and one by one come to the middle and add their art to the community mandala before returning to the drum circle.
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19. Dice Games in Music Therapy
Playing games during music therapy activities increases participation and establish rapport. Dice games are easy and fun for children of all ages. For example, assign a genre to each number on the dice. The participant rolls the die and tries to name a song based on the genre they roll.
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20. Music Therapy Activities From Home
Can a picture be worth a thousand song lyrics? This fun music therapy activity allows students to pick and choose segments of a song’s lyrics and paste them into an image. Prepare a variety of images and song lyrics for students to use in this activity.
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