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kindermusik & special needs

Music is for EVERY child!


One of the many strengths of Kindermusik is its focus on the different developmental needs of each stage of childhood. Each Kindermusik class level is designed to give every child the most appropriate and stimulating environment to nurture their developmental needs.  In fact, it is Kindermusik’s musical and developmental basis that makes the program such a natural and effective way to augment occupational, physical, or speech therapy.


Each child has his or her own developmental patterns of growth, and the child with special needs is no exception.  Instead of rushing ahead, Kindermusik celebrates and explores each stage, fostering joy and creativity and respecting a child’s unique pattern and pace of growth.  As a result, Kindermusik classes provide a unique place where the child with special needs can actively participate with peers of all abilities without pressure to perform in any way.


Tel: 253.224.2451

Email: [email protected]

Tacoma, WA 98403

special needs KM

Dr. Melissa Johnson, a pediatric psychologist and advisor to Kindermusik International, says that Kindermusik can be an effective part of the educational and therapeutic plan for young children with developmental challenges. She points out three reasons she sees Kindermusik as a wonderful resource for children with any variety of special needs.


1. It facilitates inclusion. Beyond just mainstreaming children, Kindermusik offers them full involvement in community activities, while giving them the support necessary to succeed. For example, children with motor disabilities such as cerebral palsy or spinal bifida may not be able to participate in children’s activities that focus on developing excellence in motor skills. But Kindermusik activities are accessible or readily adaptable to these children’s capabilities.


2. It is based on a multimodal, multisensory design. Kindermusik curricula are enriched with stories, pictures, creative movement and a wide variety of interesting objects as part of activities that pull children into the interaction no matter what their preferred learning style and mode might be.


3. It nurtures the individual child’s emotional and social development. The emphasis on the joy and pleasure of music, on the sharing of this joy with one’s caregiver and peers, and the support of the child’s self-esteem make it particularly appropriate for children and families who face psychosocial stresses and difficulties.


There is one pediatric occupational therapist in particular who agrees. We recently came across her blog entry where she describes first-hand the amazing effects Kindermusik can have, and she has become a vocal advocate of the program.  “I have had many OT (occupational therapy) clients who weren’t learning to talk with just speech therapy or developmental services, but did learn to speak after attending Kindermusik classes! Now, it is not designed just for the special needs child yet these children potentially can benefit greatly.”  To read her blog post in its entirety, including a powerful testimonial about the way one little boy benefitted from Kindermusik, click here.


Kiddos and Kin owner and educator, Shay Ryan, has a special place in her heart for kiddos with special needs. She has a younger brother with autism, and has been an advocate for inclusion since she was a young child. She received her degree in Developmental Psychology and has an extensive background in Applied Behavior Analysis.  As a former Behavioral Therapist and Program Coordinator through Rutgers University, she has had the pleasure of witnessing monumental growth in the students she has worked with. She has firsthand experience in the power of music and its ability to help facilitate language development and positive peer interaction. Nearly every one of her Kindermusik classes includes children with special needs.  We are also proud to take DSHS! Speak to your coordinator to see if you qualify for Respite. Our Provider ID is 205 752 001.


Children ages newborn to 7 years around the world love and benefit from their Kindermusik classes every day.  But don’t just take our word for it… try it out for yourself!  Sign up for a free preview class.  We’d love to meet you!