Music is the universal language of mankind and people generally bond with music. It could be why children respond to music while still in the womb of the mother. Music is also a key component of preschool education. Here are 5 ways music benefits school children.
1. Multiple Skill Set Developed with Playing Music
We may think music is just a melody of sound and tones that gets us - from adults to children grooving together. However, a child learning about music also taps into different skill sets simultaneously. When a schooling child learns to play a musical instrument, s/he learns to use their ears to understand rhythm, eyes to read notes and small muscles to play the instrument.
For example, playing instruments such as drums or other percussion instruments, children learn to coordinate their eyes and hands. Continuous practice improves hand-eye coordination beating the drums and bringing the cymbals together.
2. The Brain Works Harder
Neuroscience research has shown that children involved in learning music have larger growth of neural activity than people who are not in music training. Changes were found in the brain images of children who took 15 months of weekly music instruction and practice. The students who participated in the study had improved sound discrimination and fine motor tasks and brain imaging showed changes to the networks in the brain associated with these abilities according to Dana Foundation, a private philanthropic organization supporting brain research.
3. Improves IQ Scores
A study carried out by the University of Toronto found a small increase in the IQs of six-year-olds who were taught voice and piano lessons. The research split three groups of students up. The first group attended nine months of piano and voice lessons. The second group had drama lessons and the third group had no lessons. The children’s IQ was tested before they entered the first grade and again before entering the second grade.
What the research found was that the group given music lessons tested on average three IQ points higher than the other groups. The drama group had increased benefits in social behaviour though not seen in the musically trained group.
4. Has Calming Effects
Playing soothing tunes to a child before a nap or sleep can help calm the mind down. Music can also be used to help cool children down after physical exercise, or if they are agitated. Music can be used to pause a child’s emotion by paying attention to the soothing sounds. Relaxing music can slow down pulse rate, lower blood pressure, and calm emotions.
5. Language Development
Studies have shown that musical training physically develops the part of the left side of the brain, which processes language. Music can wire the brain’s circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information also helps to imprint information on young minds. Dr. Kyle Pruett, a clinical professor of child psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine said that the development of language over time tends to enhance parts of the brain that processes music. Language competence, he added, is at the root of social competence and musical experience strengthens the capacity to be verbally competent.
Music learning is not only beneficial to the cognitive development of children but it is also really fun. Ritmo Music Studio offers workshops and music lessons to children in Singapore. We also offer customised music programs for schools, get in touch with us.