New Canaan – Board Certified Music Therapist, Sherrye Dobrin, MT-BC, uses an iPad at The Village at Waveny Care Center every day with very specific and therapeutic intentions. Dobrin, part of Waveny’s therapeutic recreation team, has developed and implemented an exciting new program designed to engage residents at The Village and participants in Waveny’s Adult Day Program in a variety of different activities revolving around Apple’s revolutionary new technology.
Activities that Dobrin regularly leads at The Village – like hand bell choir, drum circles and singing groups – have suddenly taken on a new dimension. “We’ve been recording and laying down our tracks on ‘Garage Band,’” says Dobrin. “It’s become a music therapy program unto itself and has brought together residents and Adult Day Program participants with differing musical interests in an exciting new way.”
Groups of participants record different tracks – from vocals, to melody and percussion – and Dobrin artfully overlays them to reveal a finished product. “They can’t believe they’re creating such beautiful music that can be enjoyed and listened to time and time again.”
“I am shocked by its small size,” said Village resident, Lorainne McGettigan. “But I am even more surprised that something so small could contain all of the music we make!”
In addition to Garage Band, Dobrin makes use of a widespread range of other apps on the iPad within activities. She demonstrates an interactive piano key app called “Virtuoso,” which allows two players to perform duets from either side of the iPad. Dobrin finds that many participants, despite memory loss issues, can easily recall, recollect and perform long-known songs from their past on the piano, and now on her iPad. “We’ve had many a duet of ‘Heart and Soul,” she says.
“Our men’s group in particular enjoys my card game apps, such as ‘Crazy Eights,’ and everyone is fascinated by my iPad’s ‘Koi Pond,’” says Dobrin as a resident flicks his finger on the iPad, causing a digital ripple of water to appear as animated fish scatter.
“The way Sherrye has begun to use the iPad with our patients, residents and participants at Waveny represents a hugely creative step forward in music therapy,” says Waveny’s director of therapeutic recreation. “It’s rare to find an activity that delights and intrigues all of our residents, patients and Adult Day Program participants equally, but the work she’s done with the iPad seems to be doing just that.”
Committed to embracing cutting-edge technology, Waveny Care Network provides a comprehensive continuum of healthcare to serve the growing needs of older adults from all areas. Waveny is a not-for-profit organization that offers independent living at New Canaan Inn, assisted living for people with Alzheimer’s and memory loss at The Village, and skilled nursing at Waveny Care Center. It also includes Waveny Home Healthcare, the Brown Geriatric Evaluation Clinic, a Geriatric Care Management team that provides 24-hour coverage, an Adult Day Program available six days a week with transportation to and from New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Darien and Wilton, inpatient and outpatient Rehabilitation Services, and respite and hospice care programs at The Village and Care Center. For more information call (203) 594-5200 or visit www.waveny.org.