As back to school rolls around, you are probably thinking about your child’s education and after school activities. Music lessons are an important supplement to your child’s classroom. Here’s why every parent should consider allowing their child to take lessons.
- Learning a musical instrument improves focus
Research has demonstrated that learning a musical instrument can help a child learn to attend to one stimuli without distraction by allowing their brains to discriminate effectively between activities that require steadfast focus (such as listening to a conductor or teacher) instead of reacting to stimuli that are sudden, but non-important (such as a closing door or cough). This helps the musician to be a more polished performer, a skill that transfers to becoming an attentive student.
Besides which, a musician must have sensitive ears, and be able to isolate important melodies and rhythms within a complex musical structure. This may help a child to hear his or her teacher’s voice above the classroom din.
- Music lessons help teach kids to read.
The skills needed to read music and read a book are essentially the same. Music and language are sequenced in much the same way, having a specific syntax, phrasing, and syllables (or rhythmic patterns). Chords within music have important functions and order within a musical phrase, as do adjectives, nouns and verbs within a sentence. Both music and books are read left to right. It is not surprising, therefore that music lessons help children to improve their reading fluency and accuracy.
- Socialization is important to music lessons.
Children who take a musical instrument must learn how to listen to and take turns with other musicians, such as accompanists or other performers in a group. Call and response structures in music mimic dialogue that we use in every day social situations, and teach child how to communicate effectively, take turns and listen to their peers.
- Music teaches self regulation skills.
While learning a musical instrument, children must learn to follow rules about tempo and dynamics, controlling the volume and speed of their playing to match the song. They may also have to pause, or use rests in their songs. In the classroom setting, children must stay seated, resist calling out, and abstain from other disruptive behavior.
- Learning a musical instrument improves sequencing and logic skills.
Sheet music often includes predictable rhythmic and harmonic phrases that help a musician to quickly recognize patterns and interpret them with ease.
- Sheet music has mathematical components
Students must learn fractions to understand a piece’s rhythmic structure, a have an understanding of spatial reasoning in order to see the distance between two notes on a staff.
- Motor coordination improves with instrumental lessons.
Research has demonstrated increased dexterity in the fingers of piano and guitar players, and more ambidextrous hands. This is also important for writing and other fine motor tasks in the classroom.
- Learning a musical instrument gives a child a boast in self confidence and a creative outlet for expression.
I have heard many students being pulled away from the temptation of drugs or truancy because of the pact music has had on their lives. It can be powerful force of positive energy for them. Shy students also become comfortable performing in front of others, and develop more confidence in themselves as their skills grow.
Still in doubt? Get a free trial lesson and see for yourself! Offer expires September 15th.