Monday, October 19, 2015

The Intergenerational Rock Band

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool ideas is the annual 
Intergenerational Rock Band of Drury University in Missouri, which brings together Drury music therapy students along with older adults to perform a wide range of songs.

(Check our archives for parts 1-64.)

Older adults come from The Gardens retirement facility and Drury's Institute of Mature Learners.

“The values inherent in music can transcend age, and we always pick songs that are about the importance of living for the moment with a positive message everyone can relate to,” said Dr. Natalie Wlodarczyk (Wool-dar-zik), assistant professor of music therapy.

Some residents suffer from dementia and do not recall ever having attended practice, but their knowledge is evident when they sing along with every song.

Dr. Wlodarczyk says residents can remember the music, but not having attended practice because music is stored in a different part of the brain.

She adds that the music also helps the residents with cognitive abilities.

The seniors and the students both enjoy their time together. Drury student Tyler Stokes, a guitar player for the band, said, “Anyone can be hip or rock. It is a state of mind not an age or stereotype.”

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

1 comment:

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