Music and Stages of Development

Many parents are aware of the power of music to stimulate and develop the brain. However, what they don’t realize is that pairing certain musical activities with specific phases of a child’s development helps achieve necessary milestones for healthier social, emotional and academic growth.

Why the Stanley Greenspan Model?

Dr. Stanley Greenspan, who created DIR(developmentally, individual, relationship based) model, Floortime, and related strategies to facilitate emotional, social and cognitive growth in children with developmental delays, has identified six stages that describe the levels of your baby’s mind from infancy to pre-K. For children with special needs who have not progressed through these stages at the same time that neurotypical babies do, they serve as important markers of needs that have to be fulfilled for overall development and well-being.

What are the stages of development that need to be fulfilled for growth at any age?

Stage 1: Security and the Ability to Look, Listen, and Be Calm
This developmental skill is the ability to be calm and self-regulated, while at the same time interested and engaged in the world.

Stage 2: Relating: The Ability to Feel Warm and Close to Others
This skill is expressed when the child smiles back at a parent in a special way.

Stage 3: Intentional Two-Way Communication Without Words
Skills necessarily acquired in this stage in which communication occurs through facial expressions, gestures and body language.

Stage 4: Solving Problems and Forming a Sense of Self
This is a stage whereby individuals develop a better sense of self.

Stage 5: Emotional Ideas
This stage is one of symbolic expression, where a child becomes more self - aware and can communicate ideas or feelings.

Stage 6: Emotional Thinking
This stage represents a capacity to reflect on future behavior, feel empathy and realize that actions have consequences.

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What parents are saying

Her awareness of others and her ability to use her language has improved tremendously in the past few years. I think the music has been a real key in her development.
From a Mother
I've seen Manny move from being isolated and in his own world to being able to join his peers in school and even at home with his younger sister.
Jason, Manny's father
Dear Karen, you have been able to bring out Harold's smile and his joy of life. He can open up and let us know more of what he is feeling and thinking. What a gift for a parent!
From a parent
Thank you for your music and for all the joy and learning you've brought to Jeremy. All the musical intelligence you've encouraged will thrive! He'll always remember you.
From a parent
Daniel has grown in so many ways through the art and music sessions. He is expressing himself so much more clearly and fully. He seems to be so much more comfortable with who he is.
Cheryl, Daniel's mother
Dear Miss Karen, As you know, I auditioned for the play Honk, Jr. at my school. Guess what -- I got the lead role of Ugly! I think all of my work in music and theatre at Arts for Healing really helped me do a good job at the auditions. So thank you for helping me so much over the past 8 years. I'm really excited. Love, Brian "Music can always be there when you need it."
Zeke, 8 year old boy with Asperger's Syndrome

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