Sign language can be a very effective tool in therapeutic environments if we can find a way to use it seamlessly. I have found that the best way to become comfortable with sign language is to learn the sign language ABC’s. The letters signed throughout the alphabet are the same letters that are used as building blocks for more complicated signs. For instance, many of the color signs are based off of the signed first letter of each word. Therefore, yellow would be a “y” shape with a twist at the wrist to denote the color.
In this week’s video I display all of the ABC signs and also quickly cover some of the more confusing signs as well. I hope you all enjoy and tune in next week!
This week marks the halfway point of my internship. As I mentioned last week, it’s an amazing feeling being this far into my internship and learning so much!
During this next half of my internship, I really want to continue focusing on my clinical skills, applying my knowledge in the clinical setting, and being even more flexible.
One of the biggest things that I have learned this week is that learning is a continuous process. There is always something new to learn in every situation and every situation might be different than the last. That is what makes music therapy so special. It’s unique because each individual is unique and there is no “cookie-cutter” method to do something. One individual may respond well to something that I try, but when I try the same thing with another person, it may not work; this makes sense because each person is different.
I’ve attempted some things in some music therapy sessions with clients that have completely flopped and I’m learning that it has happened to everyone. That’s why learning is a process because you have to try something to see how a client or a group responds to it. If they respond well, then great! If they don’t respond well and the intervention/technique is not effective in helping the client reach their goals, then it’s a great opportunity to reflect, learn about the client/people in the group, and appropriately adapt. Adaptation may need to be done immediately and so it’s important to remain flexible within a session. This is something that I am quickly learning and working on because you may have to switch gears quickly, especially when something does not work.
I’m also learning that it’s important to continuously assess the needs of a client and each individual in a group within every moment of a session and appropriately adapt to their needs. Every person has their good days and their bad days; I’ve had good days and bad days just this week too. This is another reason why remaining flexible is important because a client may not need what you had originally planned. I have struggled with this in practicum while in college and I am learning that it’s just best to have a general plan of a session; not every detail needs to be planned out.
In the next upcoming weeks, I’ll reevaluate what went wrong in a session and improve or change the next session so that it benefits the clients. That’s why learning is always continuous. I guarantee that this will happen when I am a professional. However, the more I learn from these experiences now, the better I will be able to handle and immediately implement new things on the spot as I grow.
Thank you for joining me again for our sign language series! This week we are learning our season signs. These four signs are a great tool to have in your back pocket. I am continually working to build awareness of environment and time in the therapeutic environment. One major way we can do that is by working to help all students to be able to correctly identify the seasons, weather, date, and so on.
When a student can understand the varying seasons that brings us one step closer to a greater understanding of how to care for oneself at the most independent level.
I hope you enjoy this week’s video and enjoy our bonus sign for Halloween!