Sunday, March 30, 2014

Drum Circle Technique: Get Your Groove On!

*note:  A presentation/workshop to students at James Madison University, March 28, 2014.  Much of this Prezi is in outline form and was presented simultaneously with in-depth discussion and experiential drumming.  The material is adapted from the writings of many of the group drumming pioneers and experts in the field, and further developed by my own training from these individuals as well as my music therapy clinical experiences.  Many thanks to Arthur Hull, Christine Stevens, Kalani,  and Bill Matney, to name a few.


Friday, March 21, 2014

App of the Week: Singaling

I love trying out new apps for the iPad. And don't forget...many of the same apps are also available for Android.

Singaling was free one day in the iStore and I snatched it up!  It usually sells for around $2.99.*

This is a fun app just to play around, but I think it also has some good possibilities for use in music therapy.  Singaling is basically a vocal sound processor.  It creates cool effects for vocals.  You can sound like a heavy metal rockstar or add your voice to a classical choir in a cathedral.  It also has some fun effects like "chipmunk" or "outer space." 

 After reading my short review, it is worth your time to take a look at the demonstration video that follows.  The app is incredibly robust with features, but has a clean look and easy to use interface.  This is a great advantage for our clients, their teachers and parents.  
The app's main screen has large buttons and sliders, so that with a simple touch, different effects can be turned off and on even while singing or inputting sound.  The presets are awesome!  There are many different styles presented in a handy scroll list.  

Friday, February 21, 2014

Coming to a Health Care Plan Near You... HDHSA, or High Deductible Health Savings Account.

What is behind the rise in these plans?

-although they have been around for a decade, the recent increase in the availability of these plans is due to the Affordable Care Act.  Why?  Because it can save employers money.  That's the bottom line.

So why do employers suddenly need to save money on health plans?

-the affordable care act makes insurance plans more expensive in general.  If you haven't been following the reasons behind this, please start hereIn short, plans now have to cover all kinds of wellness benefits, maternity care (whether you are male or female), etc.  They also cannot deny insurance for pre-existing conditions and there is no lifetime limit on payouts from the insurance company.  So the insurance companies are charging more in order to stay in business.  Hence, companies (and employees) get to pay more for their plans.

 Does an HDHSA plan save an employer money?

-yes.  It basically shifts more of the cost to the employee.   
 Does an HDHSA save YOU money?

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