|Illustration : Playing Guitar can help autis child, source : Askep|
Nowadays - There are many Autis Children in Indonesia or in others countries. The scientists can not explain about the causes of the autism. There are two assumptions about it. First, the autism is caused by genetic factor, and the second one is environment. The symptoms of this disease can be seen in children who aged thirteen months or three years after their birth. The autis children also get problem in learning, communication, and language. A child can be said getting autis when he/she has more characteristics such as difficult to interact, growing by slow moving, and has unnormal behavior.
The autis children must be given a special attention, because they can not grow if there isn’t guidance. Perhaps, a therapy is very important in curing the autis children, but I can not assure the children will be normal. There are some of therapies, they are Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Applied Behaviour Analysis. The Speech Therapy is a therapy by handling the communication. Then, the occupational therapy is a therapy by giving services that are sensory. And the last, applied Behavior Analysis, it is educational treatment.
Well, how is about Musical Education ? it means for autis children, and I think the musical education is an example of educational treatments. We think that music is just something that can entertain us when we have a free time, we think that music is a friend when we get a problem, and we think that music is one of our favorite thing. But, music can give a positive effect to autis children.
There are several ways of working in music therapy to help the autis children. The first, Learning to express themselves. The autis children usually are not interested in society. Therefore, the use of music as therapy can work well. When autis children learn by music therapy, they will get a chance in expressing themselves. Although, it can not be known specificly how it works, but it is proven.
The second, musical education can keep and focus attention. In this way, we can teach in playing chords, note, and others to see the effect of children. When the child is playing instrument of music, for example piano, he/she tries to focus to that instrument. So, it will give the effect in focus.
The third, musical education is the way in improving the children’s speech. Language is an important area of autis children’s growing. According the scientist, music is processed in both hemispheres. So, music can help autis children to improve the cognitive function, and their speech.
Then, music is a way to make a non-verbal relation that’s not threaten. Usually autis children are not responsive to other’s feeling, they try to avoid physical contact, such as hugging, and ignore society. Music therapy gives a chance to autis children to make a non-verbal relation that’s not threaten by music instrument, because the sound, appearance, and shape of music instrument help the autis children to do first contact, it means that music instrument as mediator.
There are two steps if we want to teach music to autis children; Introducing about tone, and giving the lesson in playing the music instrument. The first step, we just introduce to autis children about music, and make them to love music, but we must be patient in teaching them, because they often be angry ,and do unnormal acting in the first time. The last, in teaching how to play instrument music, we must be able to give a lesson that’s interesting. Then, we give them a freedom in playing instrument music, although they play that instrument irregulary at the fisrt time. Therefore, musical education is one important thing in curing the autis children. [Mhyu]