Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Skypedrum With Kat Fulton!

The 3rd Semi-Annual Skypedrum event at 
Florida State University

We held our Skype drumming event today in my music therapy drumming class.  Kat Fulton has been very gracious in facilitating simulated drum circles for my class the last three semesters.  Her experiences using drumming in the real world have been an invaluable resource for my students!  I love giving them a different perspective and bringing in guest lecturers to share their specific knowledge about target populations.  

Teaching via Skype has its own learning curve and sets of rules, but facilitating drum circles over Skype is still in uncharted territory.  Kat has done more than anyone I know to develop some protocols for facilitating drumming over Skype.  One of the most difficult things to overcome is the time delay.  Her strategy to help manage this phenomenon during our session was to encourage the group to self-facilitate.  Essentially, she gave instructions and then had a person from the group do the leading.  But Kat was also able to do some facilitating on her own by ignoring the sounds coming from her computer and just staying in time with a chant and drum response.  This worked well for a class of music students who could keep a steady beat, but I wonder how well it would work with real clients?  Something to explore!

Today we were studying about the psychiatric setting.  Kat introduced an activity called, "Evolution."  She credited the activity to Arthur Hull, but it worked very well as an activity that could be adapted for use in a psychiatric setting.  You can see that in the picture above the students are seated in a circle facing outward.  There actually had been small percussion instruments placed on each chair before they were sitting down.  They went around the circle and stopped together at times in front of different chairs to play a group groove/rhythm.  After each person had played all the instruments, Kat had them talk about what instruments they liked and didn't like.  This discussion easily transferred into real life examples related to social interaction, personalities, mood and emotional expression.  A great stimulus for group discussion and processing!  

Than you, Kat for another wonderful installment of Skypedrum!   

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