Happy Fall Y’all!

Now that the fall weather has arrived in Northeast Ohio, Many people, including myself, are ready to partake in every fall themed activity that’s available. ‘Tis the season for Apple picking, pumpkin carving, and sharing a few favorite intervention ideas!

Since Apple picking is so popular during this time, this movement intervention mirrors the same movements as when you pick apples.

The general idea is for group members to work together to manipulate the stretchy band in various ways.

“As Long As There’s An Apple Tree” by Dionne Warwick is a song with a slow and steady beat, which allows for additional processing time during this movement intervention.

  1. Each member holds onto a designated color on the stretchy band
  2. Various movements are taught and practiced in rhythm. Movements include, up=reaching for the Apple to pick off the tree, down=placing the Apple in the bag, shake= shaking all the apples out of the tree, and pull back towards your mouth as if you would take a bite out of your Apple since taste testing is a must!
  3. Play the song! If more visuals are needed, the MT can stand in the middle to act as the tree by holding the many apples. When an individual’s name is called, they will take the Apple and place it in their bag as described in the previous step.

When people go Apple picking, the next step is taking the apples home to either use for an activity or to create something through cooking or baking. The lyrics in this  song include “there’ll be Apple pie” which primes the whole session to follow a sequence, such as writing a song about pie!

Enjoy the fall as you move and groove to the ideas of the beautiful elements this season has to offer!

All About Music Therapy is a mini-series in which The Groovy Garfoose Music Therapy Services explains the ins and outs of music therapy.

In their fourth episode, “What Are the Benefits of Music Therapy?,” they discuss the different domain areas that can benefit from music therapy treatment.


Learn more about music therapy at groovygarfoose.com/contact

Welcome to “10 Tips & Tricks for Beginning Internship!” After completing my first month of internship, I thought I would share some personal tips and tricks for other students either currently in their internship or planning for a future internship. Bonus: these tips can be useful to anyone! My goal for this post was to share my learning process and exciting journey with others. If you have any questions or comments, let me know! Thank you for reading about my journey here at The Groovy Garfoose! -Emily

  1. Be Present.

Be Present. As you are beginning internship, take the time to be fully present in every opportunity you are given. Be aware of your thoughts to keep them from moving towards the past or future. You are here, in the moment, so enjoy your surroundings. This is a tip to not only enjoy what you are doing to the fullest potential, but also to allow you to gain everything you can from your internship.

  1. Balance Your Life.

Balance Your Life. This tip comes from all of my supervisors in college and in my internship. It is important to find a balance between all aspects of your life, especially work and personal. It is difficult to keep your work and personal lives separate, but it is a huge benefit to do so. This will allow you to give more in both parts because you are not thinking of the other. Keep work at work to allow yourself to go home and spend time with friends, family, pets, and more! It is important to learn this while you are an intern to build this skill before entering the professional world.

  1. Build Your Repertoire.

Build Your Repertoire. Now is the time to learn as many new songs as possible! Allow yourself to dive into the enormous amount of music there is to learn. Find a genre or decade that you are not familiar with and begin learning. You may be facing new populations now or later in your professional life, so expand your knowledge of music.


  1. Stay Healthy.

Stay Healthy. There is a small saying that says, “You cannot pour from an empty cup.” What does this mean? It means that you cannot give to others what you do not have. In internship, you give to your clients by being there to support them however they need supported. However, if you are sick, tired, or just not taking care of yourself, it may become difficult to be there for others. Remember to care for yourself just as much as your care for others.

  1. Ask Questions.

Ask Questions. Everyone says, “There is no such thing as a dumb question.” This is true! As humans, we are always seeking to learn and grow to become more aware of our world. To do this, we must be curious and seek answers through questioning. Beginning your internship is a great time to start asking those questions. What do you want to know? Everyone around you is eager to find out, so start asking.

  1.  Build A Strong Routine.

Build A Strong Routine. Building a routine can help you stay organized, obtain your goals, and live your life with a strong purpose. It can also help you create healthy habits and throw away unhealthy habits. Transitioning into internship can be a big change. You might live in a new city or state, live alone for the first time, or be responsible for new things. This makes internship a great time to build a routine that might start defining your life.

  1. Study.

Study. We all know it is coming, the CBMT Board Certification Exam. As you are beginning your internship, make a plan for how you want to prepare. Are you the type that wants to make flashcards to review every night? Do you learn better by reviewing with friends? Now is the time to figure out what type of learner you are and how you plan to pass the test! You have all of the resources around you with professors, supervisors, materials, other interns, and more. Find out what you need and go get it.

  1. Find Your Support Systems.       

Find Your Support Systems. Don’t just find them, use them! Whether is is family, friends, supervisors, professors, or even pets, someone is in your corner. Beginning your internship is the time to find these people and reach out. Even if you are an independent person, there might be a time where it would be nice to have someone else. My tip is to find other music therapy interns and grab a coffee or lunch. Find those who are going through something similar and become a support system for each other.

  1. Remember Your Love For Music.

Remember Your Love For Music. Everyone decided to go into the field of music therapy for a different reason, and it appears to me that one large reason is a love for music. However, when you are beginning your internship, you may be spending a lot of time learning music for others. Take some time every once and a while to play the music YOU like. It is important to keep your personal love for music strong, so play some songs you love even if you may not use them in internship.

  1. Soak It All In.

Soak It All In. This is it, you are beginning your internship! You are taking the next step to becoming a professional music therapist. While you are at the beginning, take the time to soak it all in. I have been told that internship goes fast, so be sure to take everything you can from it. Learn, grow, and work towards your goals. You are here now, so let the process begin. Become a sponge, and soak it all in.

*Graphics in this blogpost are free stock photos from PEXELS.


All About Music Therapy is a mini-series in which The Groovy Garfoose Music Therapy Services explains the ins and outs of music therapy.

In their third episode, “Who Do Music Therapists Work With?”, they discuss the variety of populations that can benefit from music therapy.


Learn more about music therapy at groovygarfoose.com

Intervention Share Time:

Summer isn’t over until…September 22. Even though we are back in school, I’m still wanting to share some summertime fun with my kiddos!  Remember the popular song “Everything is Awesome” from the Lego Movie?  Well I took it upon myself to adapt this into a songwriting experience to reminisce about summer break.


First, students share something “Awesome” they did over the summer.  Perhaps a visual of some summertime suggestions like – swimming, fireworks, baseball games, etc., can help jump start ideas or give those who are non-verbal the opportunity to engage more fully in the experience.

Write down these ideas!  The song works best if you group ideas into 3’s. (see below).

Then, work on having the group sing the word “Awesome” on your cue, to increase participation.

Students keep the beat by clapping/stomping/playing rhythm sticks, etc.

Now, sing your summertime song!


Here’s an example:

Summertime was AWESOME

Summer was as cool as we thought it would be

Summertime was AWESOME

We were living our summertime dreams


________ and ________ and ________ it was AWESOME

________ and _________ and ________ it was AWESOME

________ and _________ and ________ it was AWESOME

(Return to the top and repeat)


So many ways to adapt, so go for it and keep enjoying your AWESOME summer!

– Sarah Chappell, MT-BC

All About Music Therapy is a mini-series in which The Groovy Garfoose Music Therapy Services explains the ins and outs of music therapy.

In their second episode, “How Does the Music Therapy Treatment Process Work? “, the treatment process is explained from referral to termination.

Did you see our first video? Watch it here.

Learn more about music therapy and schedule a consultation at groovygarfoose.com

If you follow us on Instagram or Facebook, then you know our team has been busy providing music therapy this Summer!  In June, we hosted two weeks of our own creative arts camp, Movie Camp.  In July, we have been providing Summer programming to adults at Deepwood, REM and ResCare and to campers at Camp Sunshine of Aurora and campers at STAR Camp hosted by the Autism Society of Greater Cleveland.

Here at GG, we have not been shy about the value technology can bring to music therapy, specifically how it can compliment and support individualized treatment plans no matter the ability level or age of the client(s) we serve.  This Summer has been no exception.

One app that has been getting lots of use between Ellen, Sarah, Bri and myself is Incredibox.  It’s been a long time since I shared an app review on the blog, so consider this the first of many more to come with added content like the “Why use _____ app in music therapy?” section and “How we’ve used _____ app in Music Therapy” section.  My hope is it provides context, rationale and value to your efforts in supporting your clients toward the goals you’ve created for them.


Cost: $3.99

Available: App Store and Google Play

Read the Reviews:  iTunes Review and Google Play Review (rated #6 in Music Apps by Apple)

Description: The tagline for Incredibox is “Express Your Creativity” and that is absolutely the case.  The only addition I would make is, “no music experience necessary”.  Incredibox is essentially a music making app that allows you to create beatboxing loops with the swipe of a finger. And they are cool.  Like, really cool. ;)  The app has a vibrant interface making it quick and easy to create music in seconds.  When the app opens, simply choose a style from the main menu and then drag “outfits” onto the beatbox characters to bring them to musical life.  Each outfit represents a looped beat, melody or sound effect.  Mix and match to create different musical loops.  That’s it.  Start, stop and record as you like. Incredibox also has a SOLO feature which allows you to tap and hold on a beatbox character (or as many characters as you want) which “mutes” the remaining characters loops.

Why use Incredibox in Music Therapy? 1) It’s PERFECT for groups. In my opinion, Incredibox is one of the best apps out there for music therapy groups.  Apps that are appropriate for varying group dynamics are hard to come by, but this one really does seem to transcend all ages and abilities more than any other app I’ve used (with maybe the exception of Garage Band!).  2) It’s ACCESSIBLE.  Swiping is all that’s required and that can be done with fingers, hands, palms, cheeks, elbows or hand over the hand support. 3) THERE ARE NO WRONG CHOICES.  Each group member can add a beat and it’s musically AWESOME. Like, really awesome.  Refer to my description notes above. ;) 4) Everyone gets EQUAL partnership in the creative music making process.  The way this app is designed you can give each group member equal opportunity to add a loop, which let’s be honest, is really important no matter the age, ability or diagnosis of the clients you serve.

How we’ve used Incredibox in Music Therapy Groups: 1) Create original music in a group with each group member adding a loop. 2) Music therapist creates a loop ahead of time and uses it as grounding for instrument playing, singing, improvisation or songwriting  (this week Ellen and I created a chant in which group members inserted their favorite ice cream flavor and we all joined in on the refrain “Scoop There It Is”, a variation on “Whoomp There It Is”).

Goal Areas we’ve targeted with Incredibox*: turn taking, following directions, fine motor development, choice making, color matching, sequencing

*Remember, YOU are the music therapist.  You have done the assessment.  You have created the goals and objectives. And only YOU can determine if using an iPad is supportive for your client(s).

Our Demo of Incredibox:

Looking for more iPad resources and app recommendations for your clients and practice??? Check out my iPad CMTE at www.musictherapyed.com or click over to my App Resource Page for music therapists.

In a new mini-series, All About Music Therapy, The Groovy Garfoose Music Therapy Services explains the ins and outs of music therapy.

In their first episode, “What is Music Therapy?”, we dive into the American Music Therapy Association’s official definition.

Click here to contact us for a music therapy assessment: http://groovygarfoose.com/contact/

It has been an incredible two weeks of Movie Camp! Team work truly makes the dream work!  This year we had a camp director, 4 full-time staff and 5 volunteers in addition to 11 campers at each week of camp! If you didn’t catch the daily updates on our Instagram (and even if you did!), today we’re sharing not one but TWO camp wrap up videos, one for each week of camp.

We hope these videos inspire you and bring you happiness this Summer!

Mayfield Movie Camp

Hudson Movie Camp


The Groovy Garfoose presents “Music Therapy Tips & Tricks.” The video blog where Ellen Antes, MT-BC shares music therapy principles and skills for music therapists and beyond.

In this video, Ellen shares an adaptable song for making summer transitions and routines go swimmingly.

The Groovy Garfoose presents “Music Therapy Tips & Tricks.” The video blog where Ellen Antes, MT-BC shares music therapy principles and skills for music therapists and beyond.

In this video, Ellen shares how to build an iso-principle playlist for self-care and for clients in music therapy sessions.



Ellen’s Iso-Principle Playlist 

  1. Hallelujah
  2. Skyscraper
  3. Bad Day
  4. Feelin’ Groovy
  5. Home


As I move to the finish line of my internship, I am blessed to have this opportunity to reflect on my experiences as an intern. Over the past year, I’ve learned a lot about the field of music therapy, private practice, various clientele, and myself. Although I am grateful to be taking along with me the MANY memories and feedback from my supervisors and families, there are three things I want to share that shaped my internship journey.

  1.  Be in the Moment- Time doesn’t stop, but it does seem to slow down during many special moments. Being fully present during these meaningful experiences can not only make a bigger impact on not only my clients but myself. Take advantage of each unique musical interaction.
  2. “Nobody’s Perfect”- 7 year old Bri would never believe that the title of a Hannah Montana song has been the motto of her journey from student to professional. Yes, the music is an important part of our practice, BUT many clients will remember a special connection being made over missing a note on the piano. Having the pressure of being “perfect” takes away from being in the moment. Know your music, but don’t dwell on minor mistakes.
  3. “Find what makes your heart sing and create your own music” – This quote from Mac Anderson has become my go to description for my work. Every client, therapist, and song are different. The versatility, positive connections, and creation of individualized music gives “going to work” a new meaning.

Internship has increased my confidence and reassured me that music therapy is my purpose. I hope you enjoyed following my journey, and I would love to hear your stories and experiences below.

The Groovy Garfoose presents “Music Therapy Tips & Tricks.” The video blog where Ellen Antes, MT-BC shares music therapy principles and skills for music therapists and beyond.

In this video, Ellen shares four instruments she uses with her clients and patients for sensory stimulation within the context of music therapy sessions.

Stay groovy!

Calling all music therapy, art therapy, art education and special education college students…

GG Summer Camp is BACK!  And we need YOU!  We are so excited to offer our 7th camp Movie Camp: Music, Art, & Dance from Film this Summer 2018!

We will offer Movie Camp in back-to-back weeks.  The first week will run Monday-Friday June 18-23 from 4-6pm at 435 SOM Center Rd in Mayfield, OH. The second week will run Monday-Friday June 25-29 from 4-6pm at 47 Aurora St in Hudson, OH. 

To ensure this is our best camp yet, The Groovy Garfoose is seeking student volunteers with relevant education training eager to gain experience working with teens and adults 15 and up of all abilities. Volunteers will have opportunities to support and encourage camper participation (i.e., staying on task, passing out instruments, providing hand-over-hand assistance , socialization) in addition to observing music therapists and art educators in action.  Camp is only as successful as the people that run it, and we hope you will consider helping us make it AWESOME! Here’s what that entails…

As in Summers past, we are anticipating 10-20 campers per camp.  Each day of camp will start as a group.  During this social time, we will learn our theme song and introduce the movie theme for that day.  Then we will divide campers into three small groups.  Each group will rotate through 30 minutes of creative arts experiences (Dance, Art, Music).  The end of each camp will conclude with a group experience wrapping up the theme of the day.  Volunteers will spend the entire week supporting one group of campers through each arts experience for consistency.

We are looking for energetic volunteers willing to jump in and learn even if you are new to our camp or special needs in general.  Volunteers must arrange their own transportation to and from camp and be willing and able to commit to the entire week of camp to provide consistent support and familiarity to campers.

To Sign up to volunteer at The Groovy Garfoose Movie Camp(s) click here.

Interested in volunteering but still have more questions?  Please contact Ellen Antes, MT-BC at ellen@groovygarfoose.com for more information.

Thank you and we hope you can join us this Summer!

With each snowy and rainy Ohio day, it brings us one step closer to SUMMER! Summer is filled with warm days, long nights, and new ADVENTURES. One of my favorite adventures from last summer was being apart of the Groovy Garfoose Summer Camp. As I learned, every day of Summer Camp at the GG consist of FOUR very important components: music, art, dance, and LOTS of fun!

Music includes playing instruments with peers, singing new and old favorites, and opportunities for solos which show off each individual’s creativity no matter their musical ability.  Some of my favorite experiences to observe last Summer included: creating a musical rainstorm to “Purple Rain” and rockin’ out with egg shakers to “Rockin’ Robin”.

Art promotes individuality.  Each day campers create a unique masterpiece that fits within the theme for the day (and they get to take home!!). My favorite projects from last Summer included: tye dying shirts (with our camp logo!), creating colored shakers to use in music, and painting rocks to be apart of Northeast Ohio Rocks.

Dance highlights the many different ways that we can move and groove reinforcing there is no wrong way to dance when we let the music inspire us! Favorite dances from last Summer included: the “Blue Danube” Waltz, Ballet to “Firebird”, and “breaking it down” with their favorite moves on the large floor piano mat!

Fun is present in every camp experience, BUT it’s especially prominent on the last day of camp. The last day of camp kicks off with a party filled with favorite music, art, dance activities from the week, pizza, snacks, musical bingo, selfies and special time hanging with new and old camp friends. The last day wraps with a blowout performance in which camper are eager to perform their favorite activities from the week in front of a packed house of their family and friends!

If you aren’t convinced by now how awesome camp is, maybe finding out the theme of 2018 will help…Movie Camp!! Who doesn’t LOVE music, art, dance, fun inspired by the MOVIES!?  I hope you’ll join me and our GG Team this Summer at Movie Camp.   Let the GG Summer Camp ADVENTURE begin!

The Groovy Garfoose presents “Music Therapy Tips & Tricks.” The video blog where Ellen Antes, MT-BC shares music therapy principles and skills for music therapists, parents and beyond.

This first vlog post is about transition songs and their importance in the everyday lives of our clients. Plus some demonstrations!







Summer Camp is BACK and for our 7th Summer and counting! We are thrilled to offer Movie Camp: Music, Art & Dance from Film this Summer 2018 in TWO locations.  One camp in Mayfield and one in Hudson.  Here’s all the important details and how to secure your campers spot today!

If you are new to our Summer Camps, we specifically design them for teens and adults with special needs ages 15 and up to express, engage and feel empowered through intentional music, art and dance experiences. The beauty of the arts being there is no wrong note, no wrong color and no wrong step in creating something as unique as each of the campers we are privileged to serve.
Registration is now open and will be capped at 20 campers per camp.  Camps fill up fast so secure your spot today by clicking the register button below!

If you’re like me, the “Love songs” for Valentine’s Day sessions are a-plenty. However, after the holiday season, I’m always at a loss for how to continue incorporating “Winter” songs into sessions that are fresh, motivating and addressing my client’s goals. “Let it Snow” wasn’t cutting it anymore.

Then, after a stop to my local barista for an “Iced” coffee on an unseasonably warm winter day, it came to me!

“Ice Ice Baby”
This experience is great for an individual, partner or group and works well for clients of all abilities. It’s super sensory and can be adapted in countless ways.

Using the instrumental track to Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby,” I rap above the track while clients manipulate various instruments and props, passing them to their peers as directed.

The cabasa is introduced first and its sound is described to remind us of crunching snow. We rap: “Crunch, crunch baby/client’s name.”

White egg shakers are then introduced and they remind us of snowflakes. We rap “Snow, snow baby/client’s name.”

Tambourines then remind us of the shivers we get in the cold. We rap “Shake, shake, baby/client’s name.”

Then, the grand finale: ICE. Adding food coloring and glitter to an ice cube tray helped create visually attractive ice-cubes. They were kept in a small thermal lunch box to keep from melting and the students could touch. We rap: “Ice, ice baby/client’s name.”

Each rap verse contained this “passing” direction: “Stop. It’s time to listen. Pass to ______ it’s your mission.”

Thank you, iced-coffee, for this “cool” inspiration.

January is Social Media Advocacy Month for music therapy! Music therapy bloggers across the country were challenged to find a song that best advocated for the profession of music therapy. The perfect song for The Groovy Garfoose is Feelin’ Groovy by Simon & Garfunkel. Check out our version below!

This song just touches on the power & importance of music therapy and trained board-certified music therapists. For more information visit musictherapy.org

As we reflect on this past year, we wanted to share with you all some of our favorite music therapy moments of 2017:


To some people, “5 golden rolls” are a fantastic addition to the dinner table, but to me, it’s my favorite Music Therapy moment! During one of my adult music therapy groups, a client of mine verbalized very few words and mainly just listened and watched the previous music groups we had together. But when it was his turn on the Thanksgiving version to “12 days of Christmas,” the room cheered with excitement when he sang “5 golden rolls” independently. It’s also been amazing to see his peers follow his lead by singing, dancing, and communicating more independently in music! Thus far, it’s been an eye opening experience to see the exponential growth and progress in many of the Groovy Garfoose clients.


“Oh my gosh, he held onto the maraca all by himself for the entire song!” – This quote from a staff member at an adult workshop is EVERYTHING, including my favorite music therapy moment of the year. In this specific case, the staff member (quoted above) regularly attends group music therapy and acts as her client’s hands and voice, daily. On this particular day, during one particular song, her active participation wasn’t necessary as the client independently held and played an instrument as she sat back to watch him in awe. Even though it was just for one moment, during one song, with one instrument, this person demonstrated his ability to grasp, and shake the maraca, according to its function, proving his ability to learn and grow should never be underestimated.  Just as I suspected, inside this client lives a rock star, and we got to see him take center stage!


It was my first day seeing a new referral providing hospice music therapy to a gentleman with early-onset Alzheimer’s who was both non-verbal and difficult to engage. However, the social worker, who gave me the referral, shared that this man was a former musician. I was excited to see what kind of work I could do with him, and how I could create an experience to engage him and increase his quality of life. When I entered his room, he responded to his name by looking at me, then staring ahead again. Then I started to take out my instruments. The man’s face lit up and became tearful as I showed him my baritone ukulele. His eyes tracked the instrument, and watched intently as I made chord changes, and he offered his hands, typically tight to his chest, to strum. I offered several country music songs, which I discovered  he enjoyed At the end of the session, I asked if I could come back again. Clearly and assuredly, this man said, “Yes.” I am thankful for the connection I made and the opportunity to increase someone’s quality of life through music, and I can’t wait for what other special moments 2018 will bring.


When I think back on 2017, I’d have to say my favorite music therapy moment is all the growth we’ve experienced at Groovy Garfoose.  Not only are we serving more clients of all ages and abilities including Hospice Music Therapy with Gardens of the Western Reserve, but we are strengthening our community connections in Summit County by partnering with HCER, LLA Therapy Hudson, FCC and The Up Side of Downs to offer music therapy, music rec and expanded music camp opportunities for all ages and abilities.  And all that wouldn’t be possible without expanding the Groovy Garfoose TEAM!  In addition to Ellen Antes and myself, I’m thrilled to have hired a third employee, Sarah Chappell, who brings a wealth of experience our school contracts in Mayfield, Solon and Hudson City Schools in addition to our private clients in Hudson.  And our team wouldn’t be complete without our very first intern, Bri Grucza.  Bri is gaining a wealth of experience from Ellen and Sarah and is already taking the lead with private clients and groups moving her one step closer to earning her MT-BC!  As an owner and now a boss, I never dreamed of reaching so many amazing people and getting to partner with organizations that believe in the power of music as passionately as we do.  I can’t wait for 2018, because there is SO much more to come!  But I’ll save that for another blogpost. ;)

As you reflect on your favorite moments, musical or otherwise, from 2017, we wish you peace and joy.  Happy Holidays and bring on 2018!
– Bonnie, Ellen, Sarah & Bri