We have had several comments and requests for elderly music activities in recent months. Many of our readers are familiar with the benefits (including for health) of using music with seniors and the more elderly. (Great for kids too). And they’ve also read our page on Health, Music and Mood.
One of the most easy and enjoyable ways for seniors to learn and play their own music is with chimes. The simple way. So we’ve invited experts in the field, at Musical Pipes, to be a guest writer and discuss this in a unique article for our site.
One of our activity consultants is very familiar with these ideas, has played chimes herself, and highly recommends it as an activity, because you don’t need to take lessons, practice, read music, or even know much about music.
Tips on Elderly Music with Chimes
Here is what our guest writer Jay from Musical Pipes says about using pipe chimes…
…..”If you have ever played handheld pipe chimes you know just how much fun they can be and how easy they are to play. After all, you won’t need to know how to read complicated sheet music and is as simple as hitting your one chime when it’s your turn in the song.
No musical talent required! So it’s perfect for elderly music. Playing pipe chimes is a great group activity where people of all ages can play together without any practice and is a loved holiday tradition for many families.
Enjoy fun songs that you’ll recognize ranging from over 200 Christmas, religious and children’s songs that we all heard while growing up like Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, When The Saints Go Marching In, Old McDonald and On Top Of Old Smoky, just to name a few.
“Elderly music for one, or a group — With the addition of some uniquely designed cradle holders, you can turn your same handheld pipe chime set into a xylophone. This allows just one person to enjoy the same songs without the need of a large group.
You can even dramatically simplify things by removing all the chimes/notes that you don’t need for each song. In some cases, you can play a whole song with only five chimes in front of you. It’s a great learning tool and a fun activity for all ages.
Making your own set can also be fairly easy with the use of some simple tools, time and accuracy. After all, these are just metal pipes cut to the correct length that make such a beautiful sound.
Click here for free instructions on how to make your own pipe chime set and storage bag
Sets — Or, if you’d rather someone else do the work, you can purchase an affordable complete or fully customized set, including 23 pipe chimes, a heavy duty storage bag, metal strikers, cradle holders, wooden mallets and song books from Musical Pipes where everything is hand made.
“Music Books — One more thing, you can get all the pipe chime music for free online…
or you can purchase either a PDF or printed version of each song book with some very useful aids — including how many pipes are used for each song, an index, a list of chimes needed for each song and how often they are used, etc.
The PDF version allows you to print out each song however you’d like (on large posters for example) or even display them on a big screen or TV. In any case, the printed song books and PDFs are well worth it. There are many other helpful hints and tricks on how to play your pipe chime set.
As Musical Pipe’s slogan goes, “It’s chime to start making music!”
…Jay, at Musical Pipes
There is now a nice song book with Familiar Tunes. Perfect for the senior age group. The Familiar Tunes song book has 60 songs in it that seniors will most likely recognize (folk songs, traditional songs, camp fire songs, patriotic songs, etc.). And easy to learn and use.
So see if elderly music with chimes would work with your group or family. I love the idea of having an activity with making chimes yourself. (You would need someone to help who has access to basic tools, and the ability to use them). And having access to a PDF version of the music to print out and display on a large screen is great.
Elderly music activities are wonderful additions to get-togethers, parties (if you need ideas, see our page on party theme ideas), special meals, events, etc. And the use of chimes is an easy way for many to participate and have the satisfaction of creating music of their own (rather than always just listening).
It’s simple enough for children too, and some of the music books Musical Pipes has were written for children originally, but also used extensively for seniors as well. So consider how you might include making music with your group.
Be sure to also read:
Senior Activities – by the Month — Our “Master Page” to help you get loads of senior activities for each of the individual 12 months, plus other General ideas to do throughout the 4 seasons. You’ll never run out of thnigs to do! Some are quite unique.