View Full Version : Autism and drumming.
I have been approached to teach 2 autistic kids aged 10 and 13. I'd like to know if anyone out there has any experience in teaching people with this disorder. Is it possible to teach autistic kids drumming? I do apologise for my ignorance but I have never had to deal or relate to a person with autism. Any comments or advice would be greatly appreciated.
06-11-2007, 02:29 PM
They have the potential to be excellent students but it could require some patience on your part. Suppose it's up to you really.
I don't suppose you know the severity of their conditions? From my experience you can go from getting no communication from them whatsoever to them sharing their Gold medals in swimming and art and putting many to shame with their abilities in both.
With patience and perserverance you could find it EXTREMELY rewarding.
Thanks alot for your reply and do appreciate your comments. I'm going to give it a bash.
06-11-2007, 04:27 PM
Trained as a professional music therapist and also a dedicated drummer I have some experience working with children with behavioural difficulties.
First you should find out why the parents want their children to participate in drumming lessons. Do they have educational or rather therapeutical (e.g. increasing communication skills through music) objectives in mind? If latter is the case, the parents are looking for therapy and therefore they should seek the help of a professional (music-) therapist.
If the learning of an instrument is the primary concern you have to decide whether educational orientated lessons make sense with those children. How severe are their behavioural difficulties? Autism is a very broad term which describes a variety of different forms of communication difficulties, from minor to severe. Those children could display some autistic behaviour but still being able to participate in lessons like any other child.
All the best!
10-28-2007, 02:42 AM
Hey. I have Autism (a mild form: Asperger's Syndrome) and drumming has helped me a lot. Three all important words: Patience, Consistency, and Repetition.
Patience: if it takes your Autistic students a whole year to learn one thing so be it. Don't give up on them.
Consistency: Set up a lesson routine and stick with it, don't ever change it.
Repetition: Even if the student seems to be getting something or even if they say (if they are verbal) they get it, keep going over things.
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