Music Therapy social skills / behavior video & song for special needs individuals.
Goal: Client will refrain from staring at people or their body parts.
Domains: Social, Behavior
Many individuals with autism have difficulty making eye contact, so I was more than a little surprised by a parents’ request for their son not look at people so much. Turns out this teenager had found a female peer he was sexually attracted to. He wasn’t really making much eye-to-eye contact, it was mostly eye-to-breast contact. At one point while looking at this girl, he began touching himself… over the pants, but still extremely inappropriate. She reported him to their teacher. This young man lacked the social understanding that staring at a person can make them feel uncomfortable and touching yourself in public can get you in trouble or even arrested.
This client had previously done well answering who questions, what questions, and differentiating between person, place, or thing. So, this was our starting point. The chorus lyrics of the song are “You can stare at things, but not at people.” The parents didn’t want their son to think that masturbation was wrong, just to learn when and where it was appropriate to touch himself. This boy who had previously entertained himself by watching YouTube basketball videos had recently added videos of plus-size female models to his repertoire. His parents encouraged him to watch these on his iPad, alone, in his bedroom. For this reason, the “things” in the video (picture, iPad, and computer) contain images of people. If the difference between actual people and images/videos of people is difficult for your student to understand, there are also included flashcards of a picture, an iPad, and a computer that don’t display people.
The song lyrics begin with a definition: “Staring is looking at something for a long, long time.” The music here is in a major key and the bridge lyrics then list things it is okay to stare at. This is followed by the first chorus which contains a sour sounding diminished chord on the not of “not at people.” The next verse changes to a minor key and gives an alternate definition: “Staring is looking at someone for a long, long time.” The bridge stays in minor and explains not to stare at a person’s bottom, chest, or body. The song wraps up with a repetition of the chorus.
Two videos are included: one for those attracted to females and one for those attracted to males. The lyrics and music are the same; only the visuals are different. A regular song and an instrumental song (for your student to sing independently) are also included. The project contains 24 flashcards of people (or their body parts) and things. These can be placed on printable templates: a green circle with “Yes. You can stare at” and a red prohibited / no / do not sign reading “No. Don’t stare at”.
- 2 videos [mp4 video files]
- Staring (attracted to female)
- Staring (attracted to male)
- 2 songs [mp3 audio files]
- Staring (instrumental)
- lyrics [PDF]
- lyrics & chords [PDF]
- 24 flashcards [PDF]
- 2 answer templates [PDF]