What Minor?

Discussion in 'Occupational Therapy [ O.T.D ]' started by ThisAbility, Apr 2, 2012.

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  1. ThisAbility


    Apr 2, 2012
    I'm currently a Junior in High School, and I'm planning to get my degree in Music Education. I know what you're saying... What is a music major doing on here? Right?

    Long story.

    See, I started playing violin when I was 4 years old... I started asking when I was 3, but we couldn't find a teacher who would take me. See, I have a profound hearing loss in my left ear, as well as neurological issues that affect my coordination and balance. After 12 years of music, very few people can even tell.

    I've always wanted to teach music. As in, since I was about 10. But recently, I started wondering how many kids would enjoy getting to learn an instrument, but can't because they have a disability. (I hate that word. Just because something is wrong with your body doesn't mean you lack ability.)

    I believe than everyone should have the opportunity to try things - even if you'll never be great doesn't mean that you never should. I have big ideas for practical adjustments, as well as a mind my dad calls "creatively analytical". I want to minor in something that will give me extra skills and knowledge in occupational therapy type skills.

    Anyways... My question is: If I want to work with kids that have disabilities, what would be a good minor for me? Please don't say "music therapy" - that's therapy through music, not music lessons.

    From what I can tell, special Ed focuses on learning disabilities.
    I was thinking maybe a pre-occupational therapy minor, but I'd like to point out that I am a musician that doesn't get science and math... In fact, I stay as far away as I can. :) No offense, just not where my skills are.

    I genuinely love kids - this is something I'm passionate about! I want to prepare myself to the best of my abilities and resources. I'd appreciate any comments and suggestions!!! Thanks!

    I didn't know where to post this, so if a mod/admin thinks it should be moved... Thanks!
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  3. mco316


    Jan 16, 2012
    Why not Music Therapy? Do you not want to use music in your work with children with disabilities?
  4. ThisAbility


    Apr 2, 2012
    Music therapy is therapy that uses music. I want to actually teach music - specifically violin. I just re-read what I wrote and realized I never clarified - I want to have a music studio that actually teaches violin... and specializes in working with kids with disabilities. I have no interest in being a therapist that uses music.
  5. OTPanda

    OTPanda 2+ Year Member

    Feb 13, 2012
    I was a music ed. major for several years, spent 10 years as a performing musician in the military and then decided I want to be an occupational therapist so I'm kind of the opposite of you! That being said, I think the idea of studying music ed with a minor in occupational therapy (which, until your post, I didn't even know was an option) sounds like a great idea. I understand what you are saying about not wanting to be a music therapist, I think it's a highly specialized and niche kind of field and for me, I prefer the flexibility that comes with occupational therapy.

    My only other advice is to be sure to keep an open mind as you go through your studies because if someone had told me what my future would look like when I was your age, I wouldn't have believed them!!
  6. STCM


    Jan 30, 2012
    Some schools have a Disability Studies program, which could be very useful. I think some OT related classes would also be really helpful, just in terms of getting ideas for working with people with disabilities. Though science might not be your forte, having background knowledge about some of the cognitive and physical reasons for disabilities could really help you in developing methods for teaching. Also, a minor in American Sign Language would be great because it is becoming more widely used as a method of communication for children with autism, cerebral palsy and other conditions that affect verbal communication.
  7. ThisAbility


    Apr 2, 2012
    OTPanda - I still have to double check to make sure, but it looks like the college I'm looking at offers a pre-OT degree, so I'm hoping it can be a minor.

    STCM - *Perks ears up* Disability Studies?!? That seems promising!
    Background knowledge type science I do enjoy... I just really don't want to have to take a ton of Biology/Chemistry/etc.
    I actually am an ASL student currently - I'm ASL 2, and I spent 4 hours this morning signing! I had never thought about it used with autism, etc.! My school is very deaf-ed oriented.

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