6 Benefits of Learning Music
Learning music has many benefits, but we are going to discuss six important facts that can improve every child’s life. Music education improves academic skills, physical skills, social skills, teaches discipline and practice, boosts self-esteem and introduces children to other cultures. Let’s discuss it more in depth.
Improving Academic Skills
Music and math are connected. Kids who play an instrument understand beat, rhythm and scales which helps them learn math easier. Music teaches them to divide, create fractions and recognize patterns. Children learn songs as they grow older and begin to recite them which triggers their short-term memory, and eventually, long-term memory. Music classes also introduce young kids to basic physics in which they learn about harmonic and sympathetic vibrations and more.
Developing Physical Skills
Percussion helps children develop coordination and motor skills, requiring movement of hands, arms and feet simultaneously and independently. Kids with high energy greatly benefit from percussive instruments. String and keyboard instruments, such as the guitar and piano, also help kids become ambidextrous as they learn different actions from both hands simultaneously. Instruments also encourage children to become comfortable in naturally uncomfortable positions. “It’s like patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time,” states Kristen Regester, Early Childhood Program Manager at Sherwood Community Music School at Columbia College Chicago. Music education can also prep kids to be better at dancing and sports as they learn coordination and timing.
Cultivating Social Skills
Music classes conducted in a group setting require peer to peer interaction and communication. This encourages teamwork as kids learn to crescendo and accelerando together. Kids learn to play at the same volume as their ensemble and understand their individual part in a larger setting. Students who play music together create a common goal which provides group interaction and problem solving.
Redefines Discipline and Patience
Learning an instrument takes discipline and practice which brings delayed gratification. Kids have to learn music in steps. Children need to learn how to position themselves with their instrument before they can begin playing it. Once they start learning, it takes time before they become good. They will spend hours perfecting their craft before they become good. Perhaps they want to take it to a professional level later in life. This will require even more practice and attention, learning beyond the core methods.
Kids learn self-esteem by accepting and giving constructive criticism. By turning negative feedback into positive feedback, kids build self-confidence and understand no one is perfect. This also teaches them that everyone, including professionals, have room for improvement. This skill can translate to public speaking, as well.
Introducing Other Cultures
Learning a variety of instruments allows kids to discover how music plays a critical role in other societies. Percussion instruments, such as bongos and timbales, introduce kids to African and Cuban styles of music while the modern day violin dates to Italy. Violin and piano are also used in a variety of music including classical, jazz, country and even rock. Introducing a variety of styles brings open mindedness about world and traditions beyond the ones they know due their learning of other cultures.
In conclusion, kids who show an interest or appreciation of music will benefit greatly beyond playing. They will do better in school and learn life lessons they’ll be able to pass on to other generations. The next time your child shows an interest in music, encourage them to take it as far as they can.