Music Therapy Online

Using personalized, engaging telemedicine, Healthy Young Minds offers easy access to targeted and effective pediatric mental and behavioral health care through evidence-based, data-driven interventions.

  • Improve cognitive and sensory-motor functions
  • Foster self-esteem and self-awareness
  • Target underlying mental and behavioral health issues

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Melissa Sommers, MM, MT-BC

  • Board-certified music therapist for 15+ years
  • Neurologic Music Therapist
  • Extensive experience specializing in pediatric music therapy, specializing in neurologic disorders and traumatic brain injuries.
  • Career spent supporting all ages and abilities through the unique connection and power of music
  • Advanced training in DIR/Floortime (social-emotional focused approach)


I often have parents who report behaviors that occur in the home that I don't get to observe. Generally, reactivity is an issue and the child will refrain from engaging in the reported behavior when other people are present. With the telehealth model, I am able to "hide" behind the screen and easily observe the behavior(s) in action, which then allows me to support the parents with appropriate interventions to assist with behavior modification in the home.


I love combining my love for client-specific programming with dynamic and interactive technologies. I find that such engaging sessions effectively capture client attention and optimize engagement and skill acquisition. As of September 2020, Telehealth services have increased 154% across healthcare services. Client surveys have indicated an increase in engagement, overall satisfaction and improvement with provider communication. This greater flexibility in care has shown to decrease client indirect costs and provide more equitable access to specialized services for remote/rural families (ACOG, 2020; Frist, 2015; Kaiser Family Foundation, 2020; Orlando, Beard, Kumar, 2020)

Katharine Clark-Keene, MEd, BCBA, LBA

I love teletherapy especially for Occupational Therapy. With teletherapy, I can see my clients in their homes and work with them to become more functional within their natural environment. I am able to to work with my clients in their homes with the activities that may be difficult for them! There is nothing like learning to cook in your own kitchen or improving your strength and range of motion when hanging up laundry on your clothes line or dusting high shelves. Problem solving and then performing a difficult activity doesn’t need to be generalized when you are actually doing it.Doing it within a clinic there is a need to generalize but that isn’t needed when you are already doing it within your own home. I have found that the bond formed between my client and their family is deeper than any I formed in a clinic!

Linda Lafyatis, Telehealth Occupational Therapist

My son has benefitted from teletherapy in so many ways. We have less missed visits and it helps him stay healthier, not being exposed to as many elements. I don’t have to spend travel time or cancel when we go visit family. He has made great progress and is engaged for his sessions. The therapist knows him well and knows how to keep him engaged with fun activities that include his interests.

Jenna Dare, parent

Music Therapy

Music Therapy is an established health profession in which music is used within a therapeutic relationship to address the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of individuals.

Our board-certified music therapist, credentialed by the Certification Board for Music Therapy (CBMT), works one-on-one with each child to assess emotional well-being, physical health, social functioning, communication abilities, and cognitive skills through therapeutic musical interventions. 

Based on the assessment, the therapist develops the treatment plan integrating music and imagery,  improvisation, receptive music listening, expressive music making, learning through music and more to support the child’s non-musical goals established during the assessment. These goals often support communication, reciprocity, strengthening relationships, initiation of ideas, emotional expression, emotional identification, self esteem, sense of self, and more.

Specifically, music therapy can help children who:

  • Struggle with anxiety, depression, attention disorders, or emotional trauma
  • Suffer from physical illness, trauma, PTDS, addiction, eating disorder
  • Need to improve communication or motor skills
  • Need to build problem-solving skills

Music teletherapy does not require a family to provide any special materials or instruments, nor does it require previous music experience.

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) builds on a variety of techniques to understand and change behavior. Every ABA program we write meets the specific needs of the child.

We take an individualized approach to addressing problem behavior, first by identifying what leads to the negative behaviors (the antecedents), then building natural reinforcements and meaningful consequences. We use positive reinforcement to teach alternative behaviors that fulfill the same purpose. Our ongoing assessments and evaluations drive data-based decisions regarding a child’s goals and programming.

Depending on the child’s age, goals and areas of challenge, our therapists use a range of validated strategies, including early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI), discrete trial and pivotal response training, the play-based Early Start Denver Model (ESDM), play therapy, and verbal behavior interventions.

ABA is an evidence-based best practice treatment approved by the US Surgeon General and the American Psychological Association for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental delays, and is appropriate for individuals with behavioral, social and communication challenges. It has proven, positive outcomes from intensive, long-term therapy including:

• Improved social, functional communication, and learning skills through positive reinforcement
• Improved attention, focus, social skills, memory, and academics
• Decreased problem behaviors

At Young Minds, every ABA program is developed, implemented and supervised by a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), with implementation support from Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs). We collaborate with speech and occupational therapy providers, recognizing the critical role enhanced communication and regulation play in addressing behaviors. We also link home, school and community through coaching, consultation and training.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is based on the idea that psychological problems stem from learned patterns of unproductive or negative behavior and thinking, and that learning how to better cope with them can alleviate symptoms.

CBT strategies include helping a child understand the behavior and motivation of others, build problem-solving skills, and identify distorted thinking and face fears. Therapists will often use role play to model coping skills and change problematic thinking, emotions and behavior.

CBT is a useful behavioral approach for a variety of disorders including depression, anxiety disorders, substance abuse, and mental illness.
We offer occupational therapy for children and teens up to age 21. Our child-driven model includes the evaluation and the creation of interventions and treatment for a wide range of functional challenges.

Occupational therapy is focused on assessing and problem-solving through the functional limitations that can affect an individual’s quality of life. These include fine and gross motor challenges, motor planning, sensory processing problems, executive functioning, and self-regulation.

We also offer specialized interventions for:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), dyspraxia, ADHD, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, sensory processing problems, and other developmental deficits
  • Poor oral motor coordination skills and strength, along with limited feeding options
  • Developmental skills/milestones
  • Handwriting issues
  • Activities of Daily Living/self-care
  • School performance and success
  • Visual perceptual deficits (dyslexia/dysgraphia/dyscalculia tendencies)

Functional and Academic Skills Training

We offer individually designed instruction of target skills to increase community access.

This therapy is appropriate for children who need to acquire academic, social and independence skills, including children with ADHD and learning disabilities.

If you or someone you know are currently involved in a serious crisis, please call 911 to connect with local emergency services that can help to resolve the situation. For other situations refer to our Mental Health Crisis Resources.

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