Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tips on how to create music activities for those with dementia

Music is a powerful tool for reaching people with dementia.

Here are more suggestions for music activities courtesy of Alzheimer's Weekly

Visit your local music store to find CDs from the 1930s through the 1950s. Songs should be familiar, such as songs from the period when the clients were teens or young adults. Favorite popular artists, Broadway shows such as “South Pacific” and “Oklahoma,” and works of composers like George Gershwin are but a few possibilities. (Please note that with the aging of the “baby boomers”, one should be aware of changing musical tastes as tomorrow’s older adults gradually shift more towards Elvis and the Beatles).
There are many ready-made sing-along DVD and video resources available at and found in senior product catalogs such as S&S Worldwide (1-800-243-9232) and Sea Bay Games (1-800-568-0188).
Your public library is another wonderful resource where you can borrow musical CDs or DVDs of an opera or familiar Broadway show.
If you play an instrument and want to have a sing-along, play it at a slower pace and in a lower key. You can obtain lyrics from the Internet and print them out in an enlarged typeface.
Create a soothing atmosphere by playing classical CDs such as Mozart and Chopin, or tune the radio to a classical music station. (Note: Playing any kind of music for longer than one hour at a time can contribute to agitation. Give participants a 20 minute break from the music before continuing.)
Add singing and humming to your daily activities and encourage all to join you in singing. Your participation in musical activities is bound to lift your spirits too

Music can open peoples' hearts and minds so use it often

1 comment:

Krista said...

This is a great tip. I am always searching for new things to do for my dad who has Alzheimer's. Thanks.