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Second Annual Neighborhood Art Show

Children’s Second Annual Neighborhood Art Show raises money for Arts for Healing

Peter and Christopher Corcoran had their second annual art show in their barn on November 9th.  The idea came about last year when they went to the New Canaan Society for Arts Annual Photography Show at the Carriage Barn at Waveny.  Peter asked his mother “why can’t we have an art show in our barn?”

Carrie Deane Corcoran and the boys invited all the children in the neighborhood to participate – there were a total of 36 Artists.  They chose AFH as the beneficiary given the fact that it related to art and helped others.  The art show was a big success, with the help of parents and neighbors.

kids artMrs. Corcoran said that the best part for her was watching the pride on all the children’s faces as they saw their artwork hanging up in the barn – it was worth all the effort to pull the show together.  Not only were they proud of their work but inspired by the artwork of their peers.artistsKaren with Concorans


Music Benefits the Brain

A Message from Our Director

Music benefits the brain!  It is exciting for us at Arts for Healing to witness the growing awareness of what we’ve already known for such a long time - that music has a definitive effect on cognitive development, memory, emotion and physical response.  Scientists’ research findings strongly indicate music can add new neural connections, leading to better performance across all areas of literacy, verbal memory, mathematics and intelligence.

In fact, actively working with musical sounds enhances neuroplasticity, the brain's ability to adapt and change. "A musician's brain selectively enhances information-bearing elements in sound. In a beautiful interrelationship between sensory and cognitive processes, the nervous system makes associations between complex sounds and what they mean," Nina Kraus, lead author of the Nature paper and director of Northwestern's Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory, explained in a statement to the media. "The efficient sound-to-meaning connections are important not only for music, but for other aspects of communication."

In addition to musical training, listening to music has also been shown to have some remarkable beneficial effects on the body. For example, Tel Aviv University scientists found that premature infants exposed to thirty minutes of Mozart's music daily grew far more rapidly than premature babies who did not have the music, and researchers at the University of Florence in Italy documented that listening to classical, Celtic or Indian (raga) music once a day for four weeks significantly reduced the blood pressure in people suffering from hypertension.

Our programs at Arts For Healing reflect the positive impact music can bring to all individuals. Interactive music making in a nurturing environment, develops listening skills, encourages language development, cooperation and problem solving. Self expression becomes a natural part of making music, and social skills are enhanced by a growing self confidence.

AFH’s adaptive music lessons allow all individuals to learn an instrument. By integrating the therapeutic and learning processes through structured improvisation, children feel a freedom of expression and comfort level in learning that they cannot experience within more traditional methods. Adaptive lessons also take into account the importance of isolating the different sensory tracks, such as visual, auditory and physical processing, before they can be integrated. The information is then stored in a variety of ways, and it can be recalled in the way that is most accessible to each child’s own sensory system.

It is always exciting for us to see the realization of a person’s potential through music. Each step becomes a total experience for the individual, creating meaning within the simplest of tasks.

Karen Nisenson, M.M., M.A., MT-BC

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