Dementia Care - Sing their Song = Make a Connection
Submitted by Dee Mayfield CDP of Certified Dementia Practitioner of Mayfield Health Care Seminars
Size of Group: One to One communication through song
Equipment/Supplies Needed: knowledge of WHAT song(s) engage the individual - and willingness to sing and re-sing to maintain engagement with individuals.
Activity/Treatment Objective or Expected Outcome: To make connection and truly engage someone in later stages of various dementia;
Description of the Activity: Singing can be a segue to assisting with personal care activities such as washing or dressing, or a prelude to eating; or it can be an activity in and of itself to momentarily bring someone from their isolation to shared time with another human being.
To use this approach it is important to know the individual - and what songs have meaning for them. During the earlier stages of any disease that causes dementia, it is important that we "practice" this intervention and create a list of what songs have positive meanings for each individual for whom we partner with to provide care.
Djembe Drumming, rhythmic patterns and folklore songs
submitted by Ms. Khemya MitRahina of Pan Afrakan Dance and Music Historical Ed. Association on February 1, 2007
Size of Group: 5-10
Equipment: Djembe drums, percussive instruments, shekere's, sticks, hand drums, etc.
Objective: To teach basic rhythmic patterns with a drum language to children, 5-16 in a group setting, natural environment. Objective to teach community interactions, social skills of working together, enhance a greater internal healing vibration, work with self-esteem and leadership skills.
Outcome: To increase the level of proficiency in the youth and children in regards to their family life, education and schools, and community environment. To teach respect of self, community and environment, and moral and principles as a guideline of discipline, concentration and focus. To greater engage the student in high frequency learning and concentration skills, so they may better adapt to school settings, and educational testing, as well as high achievements in their school setting.
Description: Gather the group of students and give drums, instruments and percussions to all.. Instruct proper hand techniques, sitting and holding or placement of drums. Teach breathing exercises, as well as history of drum, and its purpose in community. Begin with basic rhythmic patterns, utilizing right and left brain integration. Incorporate folk song, singing, chanting, drum language.
Ed Note: There are many resources on the Internet in regards to drumming. If you don't have drums and rhythm instruments and don't have the knowledge and skills to run a drumming group consider calling someone in your community that can run a drumming group at your facility. Drumming can be done by people of all ages.
submitted by Iris Anderson of I.D.E.A. Consulting Service on September 24, 2008
Size of Group: 1-100
Equipment: stereo, Music CD, song sheet
Objective: Resident enjoyment for a group or 1-1
Description: I have developed matching large print books and cd's Golden Oldies, Hymns, Carols and an exercise cd
For more information please visit www.ideamusic.org
The Song Board
Submitted by Atara Engel; TR Student, Concordia University on
September 01, 2004
Size: Up to 10 children, ages 1-6
Equipment: The materials needed for this
activity may take some time to create: a felt/Velcro board,
made out of felt. Objects or animals should correspond to a
popular children's song. For example, a farmer and several
animals should be created out of felt for the song ""Old
Macdonald had a farm."" Monkeys etc can be created
for ""Five little monkeys jumping on the bed"" and
Objective: The goal of this program is
for clients to gain awareness of the objects or animals being
used in the story/song
[each one can be discussed individually and each ""character"" in
the song can be introduced]. Clients also gain awareness of
animal sounds, shapes and colors, music and rhythm and sequencing
concepts. The kids usually respond well to the visual representation
of music they are familiar with and like to add their own spin
on each character.
Description: The felt/Velcro board will
stand in front of the children seated on the floor or on
chairs. One animal or
object will be handed out to each child present. The clients
and TRS will sing the song corresponding to the objects used.
Using ""Old MacDonald had a farm"" as an
example, the child holding the animal named in the song will
have to come up to the board [this may need some facilitation,
depending on the client] and stick on their animal wherever
they choose, then making the appropriate animal sounds. This
activity can also be done without music, such as telling a
story as a group using the felt board and appropriate pieces.
For example, telling the story of the three little pigs and
having children take turns playing felt characters corresponding
to the story.
Play with Body Awareness
submitted by Melissa
Cook of Center for the Disabled
on December 31, 2003
of music, variety of instruments
musical play while helping individuals with disabilities become
more familiar with their bodies/body awareness.
playing instruments, having participants play in a variety of
areas, including over the head, behind the head, over shoulders,
in front of their bodies, in front of their knees, down by their
feet, etc. Sometimes with the disabled population, they are
unaware of their bodies in space and many times cannot distinguish
between body parts. With instrument play while incorporating
body parts, participants can feel successful in making music
while becoming more familiar with their own body parts.
"The Sinatra Hour"
submitted by Joe Mondano of Metropolitan
Adult Day Health Center on December 8, 2001
Size: 12 - 15
Equipment: Audio equipment,
appropriate period music, chairs set in a circle.
Objective: Reminisce to stimulate
Description: (Really an half
hour activity) Circle the group and play period piece music,
beginning with a half hour of Frank Sinatra songs, pausing between
them to discuss the clients recall of the songs. Encourage singing
along by singing along, and encourage as a client discussion
about the entertainer.
Then as you use this activity again, introduce
Great choices for "special guests" are Dean Martin,
Bobby Darin, Perry Como, Andy Williams. Here too, discussion
is important such as asking the group, "Who was once Dean
Follow you, Follow me
submitted by Mindy
Fulk of Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan on Friday, June
percussion Musical Instruments, drum sticks, maracas, tambourines,
1. Increase attention
2. Increase mental flexibility
3. Increase short-term memory
4. Increase participation in group activities
gets an instrument. Chose someone to lead the activity that
is comfortable with using percussion instruments. The leader
plays a simple rhythm (start with 2-3 beats) and the group plays
it back together. You can increase the complexity of rhythms
and number of beats as the activity progresses.
a)Some patients may also like to lead the activity.
b)You can make this competitive and give a reward to the 'last
person standing'. To do this, every time a person plays the
rhythm incorrectly, they are out of the game. The leader should
increase the speed and complexity of the rhythms.
c)Have the leader play to one person at a time, that person
plays the rhythm back, then the next, then the next, and so