Movement Prop & Musical Instrument Organization

Organizing for traveling music therapists, educators, caregivers, and professionals

 

 

As a traveling professional, organizing on the go is a must. Your vehicle serves as your office, lunch room, and closet all at the same time.

In part 2 of this organization series, we explore the intricacies of being a traveling professional who travels from site to site.

You can read part 1 here.

 

organizing-traveling-professionals-blog-post-sm

Practical considerations for traveling professionals:

  • Utilize a large tote bag for your various materials and for your larger instruments like hand drums, paddle drums, sound shape drums, tambourines, and all of the accessories (BONUS TIP: I recommend contacting a vendor who sells Thirty-One bags and accessories – they have a nice selection of sturdy bags of all sizes that may hold your materials, instruments, and movement props very well)
  • Organize your smaller materials, like small rhythm instruments, streamers, and scarves, in totes and bags — doing this makes it super simple to grab what you need right in the middle of a session or class
  • Use a rolling cart, rolling luggage, or even a wagon (more on this in a bit!)
  • Find and use a good quality gig bag for your guitar and invest in a Guitten
  • Use a BoomTote to keep all of your Boomwhackers together instead of letting them roll all over the car trunk

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Getting from Point A to Point B: 

Transporting all.the.things from place to place can be a tricky job! 

Rolling carts are always a plus — two traveling music therapists share their favorite traveling accessories below: 

Just Keep Rollin’
Jody Tucker of Access Music Therapy, LLC in Duluth, MN, shares her favorite rolling bag, her visuals, and other cool materials she can keep in her HUGE travel bag…pssst, think ocean drum!

Bumping Up And Down in an EasyGoWagon
Linda of RhythmWORKS Music Therapy, LLC in Chicago, IL, shares her favorite music wagon – and it’s easily foldable and carries a ton of equipment. Check out her post!

Additional things to help you along your way:

  1. Phone and phone charger
  2. Podcasts (for when you are stuck in traffic or have a longer commute between sites)
  3. Mileage log or app
  4. Voice memo app (for when you think of a great idea, you can quickly record it for future use)
  5. Hand sanitizer
  6. A good ice scraper/snow brush or sunshade for your vehicle
  7. Umbrella

Katey of On a Good Note has written an entire Traveling Music Therapist blog series on apps, podcasts, and tips just for traveling music therapists. Check it out!

Take care of your vehicle:

Carve out time to take care of your car. Get regular oil changes and car washes, vacuum all of the seats and trunk, and throw away all the coffee cups.

Also, take some time to organize all of your materials. This is the most important step. As I wrote in Part 1 of this series, having an organized space certainly makes your life as a therapist, educator, or professional much easier.

Be flexible as a traveling professional:

Amy Buser, music therapist and owner of Wholesome Harmonies, LLC, in Miami, FL, shares about the one day she forgot all of her materials for her music therapy sessions. She relied on her music therapy training, as well as her spontaneous creativity to get through the day. 

And finally, a little humor to lighten your way:

 

mt-meme-bpc

Do you have a great organizing tip or resource for those professionals who travel frequently? Please share in the comments below.

Written by: Julie Palmieri, MM, MT-BC is the owner of Serenade Designs, which specializes in helping music therapists create, enhance, and rock their online presence. She is a board-certified music therapist, wife, and Momma to 2 beautiful girls. Visit her website and follow her on social media: Serenade-Designs.com

Movement Prop & Musical Instrument Organization

Organizing for clinics, studios, and classrooms

We know how important organization is for music therapists and music teachers, whether you have a clinic space, a studio, a classroom, or if you travel from site to site in your mobile office on four wheels (aka your vehicle!!).

In part one of this two-part series on organization, we explore ways to organize your clinic, studio, and classroom spaces (read Part 2 here). 

Utilizing wall space

Whether you have a thriving studio or a busy classroom, having your movement props and musical instruments stored up and off the ground is advantageous. This keeps some of your most important tools away from curious hands.

Using a guitar wall mounts/hangers is a perfect way to keep your guitar safe. This neat guitar wall mount from Wallaxe.com is visually appealing and super cool (and bonus points because their products are made in the USA!).

wallaxe-guitar-mount

If you are handy and want to make your own guitar wall mount for your clinic or classroom space, you can easily search for “DIY guitar mount” or “DIY guitar stand.” You’ll find hundreds of results, building plans, and ideas.

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Our friends at Music Therapy Connections in Springfield, Illinois have put together a neat and efficient slatwall that easily holds movement props (there’s the Stretchy Band!), books, baskets of instruments, and special materials for their early childhood music classes.

music-therapy-connections-organize

The team at MTC shares their process and the reasoning behind using this simple wall piece that can be purchased right from a local hardware store. It’s a perfect solution for them as it keeps their instruments better protected and cuts down on distractions for their students and clients.

Establishing storage areas

Having a separate storage space in your clinic or classroom space is a nice perk, as well.

Whether your movement props, musical instruments, and visuals are stored in a closet, an office, or simply a bin or bookcase, having a storage makes your life a little bit easier.

Everything is in its’ own place so that you can easily find it for the next time.

Organizing for itinerant Music Therapists

Music therapist Kathy Schumacher from Tuneful Teaching shared exactly how she organizes her music therapy equipment — from instruments to puppets to visuals. She primarily uses drawstring bags, tote bags, and an organized system of labels.

Having an organized space certainly makes your life as a therapist, educator, or professional much easier.

For more organizing ideas, make sure to visit our Pinterest board for organizing!

TIP FOR PROFESSIONALS

Place an instrument (eggshaker, jingle bell, rhythm sticks, small tambourine) in a drawstring bag. Give it a shake and see if your students or clients can guess the instrument.

Great for sound identification and awareness goals.

Tell us — what are your tips and tricks for organizing your clinic space, studio, or classroom? Leave a comment below!

Written by: Julie Palmieri, MM, MT-BC is the owner of Serenade Designs, which specializes in helping music therapists create, enhance, and ROCK their online presence. She is a board-certified music therapist, wife, and Momma to 2 beautiful little girls. Visit her website and follow her on social media: Serenade-Designs.com
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