What is DCM?

The Developmental Community Music Approach (DCM)

Developmental Community Music (DCM) is a comprehensive approach to facilitating an inclusive group process. DCM makes it fun and easy to present enriching and dynamic experiences for groups of all kinds.

Listen to a PodCast about the DCM Approach.

What Is DCM?

Using the DCM approach helps people:

- get to know and appreciate each other.
- feel comfortable expressing themselves in a group.
- feel confident using their musical abilities.
- learn to listen and respond to others in appropriate ways.
- use the principles of effective teamwork to reach a common goal.
- reconnect with and share their playful and creative spirit.

Key Elements
[pro-player width='480' height='320' type='video']http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwZEm2xT0UY [/pro-player]

DCM is much more than group music making. It's a holistic approach to self-improvement that is rooted in Music Therapy, Orff-Schulwerk (music for children), Recreational Music Making, and unique practices developed by Kalani.

The books, DVD, web-site and training courses offer multiple levels of support that make learning and applying the DCM approach both accessible and effective. Participants may elect to work towards certification as a way to raise their personal skill set and support their work, no matter the field.

Drumming with Children

What does a DCM Leader do?

A DCM leader uses music-based experiences as a platform for reaching developmental goals.

DCM leaders are skilled in several areas including:

  • providing a musical foundation for group experiences such as drumming, playing the ukulele and singing.
  • designing sessions to meet developmental goals and objectives in a variety of areas (physical, cognitive, social, etc.)
  • helping participants find ways to contribute to the experience, regardless of musical knowledge or training.
  • using a variety of modalities (music, movement, singing, laughter, etc.) to meet the group's goals.
  • designing a variety of session plans to meet various goal areas including; recreation, wellness, education, and spirituality.

What will learn at a DCM course?

DCM students learn how to create different types of experiences, including:

  • drum circles (group drumming improvisation)
  • guided interactive drumming (conducted group drumming)
  • group sing-a-longs (folk and popular songs)
  • toning and chanting (vocal improvisation healing)
  • movement and dance (individual, partner and group)
  • laughter exercises and experiences
[pro-player width='480' height='320' type='video']http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-r4k7b4m00[/pro-player]

What kinds of services will DCM help me provide?

Depending on your existing skills and qualifications, DCM will allow you to:

  • design and lead recreational experiences.
  • design and lead educational experiences.
  • design and lead health and wellness experiences.
  • design and lead therapeutic experiences.
  • design and lead corporate learning experiences.
Photo of playing ukuleles and native american flute

Jamming on Ukuleles and flutes

Who comes to a DCM course?

Most people who attend DCM courses are in music-based fields already, but some are looking for accessible ways to enter into music-based fields, such as recreational music making for wellness. DCM students come from a variety of professions and with diverse interests that include:

  • music education
  • music therapy
  • recreational music making
  • corporate training and development
  • coaching and training
  • counseling and personal development

What skills are required to take a DCM course?

DCM welcomes entry-level students; however, it helps to have a basic foundation in music and movement. Reading notation and knowing music theory is not required, but a sense and love of music helps a great deal. A few qualities that will help potential DCM leaders include:

  • being comfortable playing music with and for others.
  • being comfortable when addressing a group.
  • enjoying community settings and connecting with people.
  • being willing to help people when needed.
  • being comfortable with improvisation and alternative approaches.
  • being open-minded and accepting of all types of people.
  • having a deep desire to help others.