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Let the Music Play: The Amazing Benefits of Learning a Musical Instrument


Extra-curricular activities – so many options to choose from and so little time to do them all. At the end of the day, it all comes down to what your child likes best and is willing to sacrifice his or her precious time for. However, if you could choose, which extra-curricular activity is best? Obviously the one that gives you the most “bang for your buck”, right?

Most parents know that learning music – or more specifically, learning a musical instrument – has many benefits for their children. Over the years, the research supporting these benefits has begun to mount. If you are looking for an extra-curricular activity that will provide your child additional advantages, you should seriously consider music lessons.

Overall Benefits of Learning To Play a Musical Instrument

A child who studies music and learns how to play an instrument develops more than an appreciation for music and culture. There are many other benefits that children who learn a musical instrument can reap. Here are some of them:

  • Music and brain development – music enhances coordination, concentration and memory, and improves eyesight and hearing. The process of learning to play an instrument refines the development of the brain and the entire neurological system.  
  • Early musical training helps develop brain areas involved in language and reasoning. Studies show that musical training develops the part of the brain responsible for processing language, and that it can wire the brain’s circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information also helps to imprint information on a child’s mind.  
  • Two years of learning piano has shown an increase of 30-40% in Math and Spatial scores.
  • Music develops right brain creativity, which helps children learn to think outside the box.  
  • Children learning music perform better academically in school with higher grades and test scores.  
  • Music improves communication skills and social interaction. Music lessons help children develop empathy and improve their ability to interpret facial expressions and body language.

A Little Bit of Music Training Can Go a Long Way

Learning a musical instrument has been shown to provide significant benefits over the long-term (i.e. 10 years or more). Indeed, most studies on the beneficial effects of music usually examine individuals who have had many years of musical training. However, since many children are unlikely to persist with long-term musical training, parents may wonder about the benefits of learning music at all. A new study reveals that even a little bit of music training in childhood can have beneficial long-term effects on the function of the adult brain. So even children who study a musical instrument for as little as one to five years are better off than children who have no musical training.



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This article originally appeared on Education Destination Malaysia. To read more about the amazing benefits of learning a musical instrument, please click here.