Do you have a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) program at your school?

Add music activities to enhance your program!

Get on our Waiting List

Our program is designed to help students of all learning styles stay engaged and learn important skills for a fulfilling life.

Through songs and music activities that supplement the DBT skills lessons in the book "DBT Skills in Schools," students will learn mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. These Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) skills have been modified for use in schools to support students struggling with mental health issues and to help create a more accepting and non-judgmental environment, that is conducive to improving academic performance, interpersonal relationships, and overall well-being.

If you're a teacher or school staff member looking for tools to help students learn how to manage their emotions and interact with others effectively, Consider adding our program to your curriculum!

Why Music?

Music activities are important for helping students

  • with different learning styles so that they enthusiastically stay engaged!
  • to understand and apply SEL skills so they experience a life worth living!
  • to remember the skills (think of the ABC song)

In the same way that songs you know such as the cleanup song, the wash your hands song, and the alphabet song, are designed to help your students know what to do, the songs and activities in this program will help them learn and remember practical life skills to enhance their social and emotional learning (SEL) .

You don't even need to know a thing about music

to use these resources!

Become a member of the DBT Music Resource Library for Schools!

How the DBT Music Resource Library works:



Get access to a library of readymade creative music based experiences, handouts, instructions, session plans, videos, materials specially designed for each DBT skill for each age level of student. 


Instantly Useable

 Clear & concise videos demonstrate songs, activities, and how to apply them to the skills.  Download and print instructions, handouts, etc.


Make a Difference

Teach the DBT skill yourself and use our activities and songs with your students.  Watch the engagement levels and retention levels soar!.

Who are we?

As Board Certified Music Therapists, we are dedicated to enhancing the lives of children through the use of music activities and songs that strengthen their social and emotional learning (SEL).

We have completed Behavioral Tech's DBT Skills Training Program and an in-depth DBT informed Music Therapy Training program that includes 11 months of clinical supervision from a DBT-Linehan Board of Certification Certified PsyD clinician. We have experience facilitating DBT informed music therapy groups and often co-lead skills training groups with psychologists, social workers, and other DBT skills group leaders.

By using music therapy, we provide a safe and engaging way for children to express their feelings, improve communication and social interaction, and build self-esteem and self-awareness. Our ultimate goal is to make a positive impact on children's lives and support their social and emotional development."

Our creative team meets together every week to create original material for school personnel to use to supplement the DBT skills lessons.

While we are creating new material for this new project, YOU, as a FOUNDING MEMBER will get to influence the material that we create with your ideas and input.

We can't wait to show it to you!

This is a work in progress...We are going to be dripping out material skill by skill, module by module starting July 10th, 2023

Deborah  Spiegel MT-BC

Deborah Spiegel MT-BC

Deborah Spiegel MT-BC, a long time music therapist, was first introduced to DBT in 2001 when she worked as a member of a Dialectical Behavior Therapy based treatment team on the adolescent unit at the Colorado Mental Health Institute. She was trained in DBT alongside her treatment team by representatives of Behavioral Tech.

Her 11 years of employment at that DBT facility as the music therapist led to her passion for using music therapy to support patients in strengthening DBT skills.  Since that time she has devoted her career to training other music therapists in the use of DBT in their practice, and in creating resources for clinicians and participants to be able to master DBT skills through music.

Author of Creative DBT Activities Using Music: Interventions for Enhancing Engagement and Effectiveness in Therapy (Jessica Kingsley 2020.)

Deborah is CEO and director of The Spiegel Academy, providing online continuing education for music therapists and allied professionals. This includes a comprehensive DBT informed music therapy training program (in conjunction with Dr. Lauren Bonavitacola PsyD, MT-BC and a team of other DBT clinicians)

Chelsea Steen MT-BC

Chelsea has experience modifying DBT for young children, so is busy creating music interventions for the K-2 level of this DBT in Schools project.

She studied music therapy at Wartburg College in Iowa. After an internship at New Avenues to Independence in Cleveland, OH, Chelsea moved to Wisconsin.  There, in 2012, she developed a new music therapy program at a residential treatment center for children and adolescents.  Since then, her music therapy practice has included work with children, teens, and young adults with a focus to increase appropriate social communication skills, emotion regulation, executive function skills, and independence in self-regulation.   

In 2017, Chelsea joined The Spiegel Academy to complete the DBT informed music therapy program.  Using this information, she has worked to create and adapt music experiences to teach and reinforce DBT skills for children.  

In addition to playing instruments in music therapy, Chelsea plays clarinet and cello in various community groups.  She enjoys watching how music brings people together both in music therapy sessions and in a community setting.  

Hillary Cartner-Ambrose MT-BC

Andra Birdsong

Andra Birdsong has extensive training in social and emotional learning, especially for at-risk students ages 5-12 in urban communities.

Ms. Birdsong  has been a lover of music from a very early age. Born in Germany, the songs and dancing from the original movie “The Jungle Book” were the only American musical experience she had as a toddler. She moved back to the United States at age 4 and began playing the drums at age 9.

Andra attended Duncanville High School and was very active musically during her school years. She traveled with the school band to New York to play at Carnegie Hall, and later became snare captain during her senior year. Her marching band won the state championship in 2002. Andra graduated from DHS in 2005 and enrolled at Cedar Valley College, where she earned her associate's degree before transferring to Texas Woman’s University.

At TWU, Andra participated in jazz band, Gamelan, pep band, and wind ensemble. She also accompanied the choir and flute choir as a percussionist. Andra graduated from TWU with honors, earning her Bachelor’s degree in Music Therapy.

Andra passed her certification exam June 16, 2020 as a board certified music therapist in the United States. Before graduation, she completed 1040 hours of internship in Denton ISD with Sherri Ross, MA, MT-BC. She became a music educator in the summer of 2016. People with autism in on the autism spectrum, pervasive developmental disorder's, intellectual disabilities, Alzheimer's dementia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and people who are deaf or hard of hearing are some of several other populations she has experienced either in three years of practicum or internship. She offers "adaptive lessons" for students or adults with special needs.

Teaching runs in Andra's family (her mother and grandmother are both educators), and she soon found that teaching came naturally to her. She found herself teaching other music students during her undergraduate years, and beginning in 2010, she volunteered at the Denton Juvenile Detention Center, teaching lessons on drum set, snare, and guitar. In 2013, Andra began visiting students' homes for private lessons. She currently offers drum lessons to students of all skill levels, guitar lessons to students at the beginner through intermediate level, and piano to beginners and childen. She also plays in a cover band, The Texas Trail Mixers, that is comprised of Dallas ISD teachers. They perform funk, rock, and other instrumental music throughout the Dallas area. 

Music is Andra’s passion. She loves rhythms and enjoys musical encounters with others. She wants each and every student to thrive in music. Andra is a patient, empathetic, and communicative teacher. If a student is having trouble practicing, Andra seeks creative solutions to help inspire and motivate the student to get back on track. Her goal is success and a positive learning experience for all!


Melody Sylvester MT-BC


Can I play these videos for my students?

Yes! You can play the recording of us for your students, or can download our instructions and facilitate them yourself.

What grade is this for?

We are in the process of creating different music based activities geared for either K-2nd grade, or 3rd-5th grade.

At a later time we will work on materials for 6th-8th grade.

We do feel that our existing DBT Skills Mastery through Music materials will be fitting for adolescents.