Free the Musician Inside – the Skoog!

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The Skoog is a truly inclusive musical instrument

The Skoog is a groundbreaking electronic instrument that provides all musicians with a new way to play music, including those with disabilities.

The soft, squeezable Skoog and its accompanying software create a level playing field for interaction and integration, and have been widely adopted, both as an accessible instrument in schools and as a tool for professional musicians worldwide.

Roughly hand-sized, the Skoog is a tactile cube that simply plugs into a home computer or laptop via a USB connection. By touching, pressing, squashing, twisting or tapping the Skoog’s five colour-coded sides, users can play a wide range of physically modelled instruments, MIDI, or sounds they have recorded themselves. With the Skoog’s accompanying software, users can easily create unique musical compositions using its sampling, looping and layering features.

Technology emulating conventional musical instruments

The Skoog’s technology mimics the behaviour of conventional musical instruments and creates a direct correlation between the gestures a player makes and the sound that is produced. Playing sensitivity can be adjusted to respond to an individual user’s movements, delivering a powerful and adaptable platform for creating and controlling sound.

Creative tool for musicians of all levels

In addition to being a standalone instrument in its own right, the Skoog links easily with Apple’s music software products, GarageBand and Logic, as well as other compatible applications, providing budding and professional musicians alike with a new controller to inspire their creativity.

Renowned British composer Nigel Osborne, MBE:

“The genius of the Skoog is that it provides a powerful tool for music creation, whilst also being intuitive and easy to use. The Skoog is genuinely expressive, providing you with the same control over musical sounds as a flautist has of a flute or a violinist has over a violin.”

The Skoog extends the possibilities of an iPad in education

Adam Goldberg is an Apple Distinguished Educator and a pioneer in the field of music education. For many years now Adam has been using iPad to provide his special needs students with access to high quality music making opportunities and now he is using Skoog to extend the creative possibilities offered by iPad.

“The very intelligently designed Skoog, in combination with the awesome Skoog musical instrument is a true gift to music makers of all levels! I use Skoog with my Special Needs students to empower them as viable music makers. They love using Skoog. And the app with its powerful yet easy to access Bluetooth and midi implementation, brings great versatility to the very sensory friendly, durable Skoog musical instrument.”

Children on the autistic spectrum and “Lego music therapy”

Craig Smith, Deputy Principal at Autism Spectrum Australia, has been using Skoog with his students to support music making and creative play. As a teaching tool Skoog supports free and more structured activities and building on the success of Skoog in play and improvisation the team has created a unique new teaching framework that they are calling Lego music therapy.

“The focus will be on students composing and performing a piece of music using chance based techniques, with a goal of developing social communication skills throughout. In the education of students on the autism spectrum, there is a necessary time for allowing the space for risk and complete experimental exploration, but there should not also be an accompaniment of guilt when more structured, colour-by-numbers style activities are designed for boundary driven success. There are, as shown through our Lego Therapy and now the use of Skoog to drive Lego Music Therapy situations, significant benefits to employing structured teaching frameworks to initiative new types of creative play.”

Further Resources

You can read more about this new and exciting approach on Craig Smith’s Blog – Autism Pedagogy (it will open in a new browser window)

The Skoog can be purchased through the Apple Store.

We have an area of Independent Living dedicated to disabled children