What is Music Therapy?

What is Music Therapy?

Christina and Hudson

Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.

MCMS Board Certified Music Therapists use music and all of its’ attributes – tempo, pitch, timbre, volume, rhythm, etc.- to help clients meet individualized goals. Areas of need may include, but are not limited to…

–Physical/motor development                –Cognitive functioning
–Social-emotional awareness                 –Communicative skills
–Promoting Wellness                                 –Managing Stress
–Enhancing memory                                  –Creative expression
–Pain Management                                     –Quality of Life

Our Board-Certified Music Therapists assess the strengths and needs of each client, determine individualized, measurable goals, and utilize their clinical knowledge, musical skills, creativity, and compassion to develop specific therapeutic interventions to address these goals. Through Music Therapy, clients’ abilities are strengthened and transferred to other areas of their lives.

Individual or Group Music Therapy Sessions may include:

  • Singing
  • Instrumental improvisation
  • Songwriting
  • Moving to music
  • Listening to and discussing music
  • Additional music experiences that target individual and/or group treatment goals.

MCMS Music Therapy services are available for individuals of all ages with:

  • Developmental delays
  • Learning disabilities
  • Physical challenges
  • Vision, hearing impairments
  • Down Syndrome
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Sensory needs
  • Mental Health Needs
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Alzheimer’s Disease and aging related conditions
  • Other needs

MCMS Therapists offer services within these settings:

  • At the Music School
  • NH Public Schools
  • Child Development Programs
  • Hospitals
  • Adult Day Programs
  • Assisted Living Facilities

MCMS Music Therapists work closely with families and collaborate as part of  interdisciplinary teams in each setting. We are committed to providing a continuum of care for individuals and taking time to consult and work with the rest of the treatment team.

The Music School also collaborates with Area Agencies in Manchester and throughout southern NH to meet the needs of the clients they serve, and we continue to develop new programs and partnerships.

Adaptive music lessons are a great opportunity for individuals to achieve their musical goals.

Lessons are individualized, taking into account a person’s abilities and needs while working toward the goal of playing an instrument.

Within the adaptive lesson environment, the individual works with a Board-Certified Music Therapist on unique and creative approaches to the technique required to play an instrument, reading notes on a page, or collaborating with other musicians.

Adaptive lessons can involve any instrument.

For more information regarding Adaptive Music Lessons at MCMS, please contact:

Shannon Laine, Director of Music Therapy (shannon@mcmusicschool.org) or

Ashley Freeman, MCMS Registrar (registrar@mcmusicschool.org)

MCMS School-Based Music Therapy

Music therapy is recognized as part of public or private school-based programs for school-aged children. In many instances, music therapy can be included as a related group or individual service to address motor, communication, social, emotional, and cognitive goals.

Music Therapy services are provided by nationally Board-Certified Music Therapists. The MT-BC status signifies that each has completed a degree or equivalency degree in music therapy from an approved American Music Therapy Association program, completed an intensive 6-month internship, passed an MT Board Certification exam, and continues to either retake the exam or complete ongoing continuing education programs equaling 100 credits every 5 years.

As School-Based Music Therapists, our MCMS MTs work as part of the school's interdisciplinary team and use music therapy interventions to assist with IEP objectives provided by other team members for a student and/or for specific, identified music therapy goals.

MCMS School-based Music Therapy Services include:

· Individual or Group Music Therapy services in school, including IEP-based services

· Music Therapy Assessment: At MCMS, we utilize an established, research-based music therapy assessment process, called the Special Education Music Therapy Assessment Process (SEMTAP) to determine the eligibility of music therapy on a student’s IEP.

· Enrichment Groups: MCMS Music Therapists work within schools to support students with skill development and provide support for teachers to encourage the transfer of these skills to the classroom setting

· After school music therapy groups

· Consultations: MCMS Music Therapists are also available for consultation service s to facilitate the successful inclusion of learners with unique needs in a music-based environment. This could include participating in a school music ensemble, learning an instrument, etc.

· In-service presentations and professional development activities, self-care workshops, and speaking engagements

Music therapy services can benefit individuals between the ages of 3 - 22  in the following ways:

Increased attention
Improved behavior
Enhanced auditory processing
Enhanced sensory-motor skills
Increased cognitive functioning
Increased socialization
Decreased agitation
Successful and safe self-expression
Improved receptive language
Improved expressive language

For more information about MCMS School-Based Music Therapy services, please contact Shannon Laine, Director of Music Therapy shannon@mcmusicschool.org

How Do We Get Started?

Information For New Clients, Families and Caregivers

Please email or call for more information!
Shannon Laine, Director of Music Therapy    shannon@mcmusicschool.org